Visiting the TV tower of Berlin: the Fernsehturm

Berlin is the capital of Germany and a popular destination for a city trip. This is because of the historical sights, museums and a free and open-minded atmosphere. Once in the city, Berlin's Fernsehturm will soon be noticed. With a height of 368 meters (1207 feet) this is by far the tallest building in the city. As with all the impressive buildings in the German capital, there is also a unique story here. Today, the TV tower of Berlin is a public attraction.

 


Berlin TV tower

From almost everywhere in Berlin you can see the monumental Berlin TV tower or Fernsehturm.

History

The history of the TV tower started in the former GDR (DDR) district of Berlin, the east side of the city. The city would get a television tower outside the city center. Due to financial problems and time pressure from the board, Alexanderplatz was chosen as a location. The installation was led by German architect Hermann Henselmann, who invented its characteristic form. It took four years before the huge tower was finally finished but the result was and still is amazing.

In 1969 the GDR existed for twenty years and this could be celebrated with the opening of Berlin’s newly built television tower: the Fernsehturm.
The Head of State -Walter Ulbricht-, the most important man of the GDR, saw his dream come true. The sphere on top of the tower symbolizes the Sputnik 1, the first satellite to be swept into a orbit around the Earth. Architect Henselmann also took into account the positioning of the Fernsehturm during construction. This has made it possible for the sphere and mast to be seen from all major streets in Berlin.

TV tower Berlin : Fernsehturm

The famous spehere on top of the TV tower of Berlin or the Fernsehturm, as it’s called by the Germans.

View

To say the least, the view from the Fernsehturm is impressive. The TV tower’s ‘globe’ is located 203 meters (666 feet) from the ground, an elevator takes you there in only forty seconds. Once you walk out of the elevator, you get to the viewing platform where a panoramic scene of Berlin is awaiting you. If you’re lucky it’s clear weather and you can watch miles ahead of you. Take your time and try to recognize other Berlin sights from the tower, such as the Reichstag and the Tiergarten with the zoo.

If you have the opportunity, the best time to visit the Fernsehturm is on a clear sunny day. That gives a wide view and the light drop on the buildings in the area just adds that little extra. The TV tower of Berlin is an ideal location for taking pictures, even though the windows of the Fernsehturm are sometimes a bit dirty. To get a nice view of the tower you can go to one of Berlin’s other sights, or just stare at it from the Alexanderplatz.

On the viewing floor, you can walk around the complete sphere. But if you have booked a ticket for the restaurant, you don’t even need to do that! The tower turns (very slowly) around automatically. In about half an hour, you’ll have made a full tour. If you keep dining an drinking, Berlin will have no more secrets for you!

view from the Fernsehturm Berlin

In about half an hour, the globe turns around completely. When you’re having an extensive lunch or dinner you’ll see Berlin flash by a couple of times!

TV tower Berlin view sundown

Once the sun starts to go down, the view even gets better!

view from TV tower Berlin in the evening

I personally liked the view the most when the evening fell. Too bad that my phone couldn’t capture the beauty of Berlin as much…

Fernsehturm restaurant.

The Fernsehturm restaurant.

Restaurant in the Fernsehturm

You’ll notice that there is a restaurant in the Fernsehturm. Here you can go for a simple drink or a luxury dinner while enjoying a glass of wine (try the German wines, by the way. You’ll be amazed by their quality!). Whoever visits the TV tower in the morning can wake up with a tasty breakfast. In the afternoon, the menu offers a variety of lunch dishes. For the ultimate experience, you can enjoy an evening meal in the Fernsehturm. Enjoy a romantic dinner with your partner during a setting sun.
At certain times, live piano is also played for you.

The menu includes countless dishes with meat, fish or vegetarian ingredients. This means that everyone has something to choose from. This also applies to the menu of the bar. Pamper yourself for a simple beer or coffee. Something more luxurious? Then go for a cocktail or buy a bottle of the finest champagne. The bar or restaurant also offers special menus on a regular basis. For example a seasonal dish or a Sunday breakfast. One thing is certian: a visit to the Fernsehturm restaurant makes a visit to the tower even more amazing.

tv tower berlin restaurant appetizer

Our appetizer don’t look bad, huh? Not only the plate was beautiful, the food also tasted excellent!

fernsehturm berlin restaurant

A yummy steak that melted on my tongue! Yep, for me an excursion to the TV tower of Berlin was definitely worth the money!

fernsehturm restaurant dessert

And if everything has already been amazing, what do you do? You order a dessert, of course! But eat it fast, because someone else might try and steal it!

Cost of the Fernsehturm restaurant

The Fernsehturm restaurant is a tad more expensive than the other restaurants in Berlin. But, as you may already know, it’s not very expensive to go out for dinner in the German capital. As a result, prices are actually quite alright here.
Remember that, in addition to the cost of food and drinks, you have to buy an access ticket for the Fernsehturm TV tower of Berlin.
For a table at the window you pay €23.50 ($26,50) per person. For a table a bit further away you pay €17.50 ($20).
In addition to these two possibilities, there are also a lot of VIP packages with bubbles and other extras.

The cost of this ticket also includes access to the viewing platform, one floor lower than the restaurant.

In any case, I was impressed! The prices are affordable and the view is phe-no-me-nal! Wondering what’s on the menu? I took these pictures from the menu:
Would you like to see the full menu? You can see that here.

tv tower berlin menu appetizers

Some of the soups and appetizers you can order in the TV tower of Berlin.

main courses fernsehturm berlin tv tower

Some of the more expensive main courses you can order in the Fernsehturm.

Special events

The Fernsehturm often is the place to be for special events in the city. For example, the sphere of the tower was transformed into a football during the 2006 World Cup. The normal evening lighting already impresses, while the annual Festival Of Lights goes wild with decorations! Red, blue, green, yellow, … All colors of the rainbow are projected on the TV tower of Berlin to give it a even better look. The Festival Of Lights takes place in October each year. In addition to the Fernsehturm, other buildings in the city, such as the Brandenburger Tor and the Berliner Siegessäule, are also illuminated. A nice event to visit if you have the chance.

Wedding party in the Fernsehturm?
Are you getting married, have your parents (or yourself) been married 25 years or more, or do you have something else to celebrate? It’s also possible to rent the Fernsehturm for a private party. In addition, the catering provides snacks, drinks, cakes and everything you need. It’s also possible to dress up your party with live music or other entertainment.

tv tower berlin evening lights

The Fernsehturm gets lit up every night!

Nearby

During your city trip to Berlin there is of course more to experience than just a visit to the Fernsehturm. The location of the tower, Alexanderplatz is already a good base for exploring everything. In addition to large retail chains, there are several museums within walking distance, such as the DDR Museum, the Altes Museum and the Deutsches Historisches Museum (German History Museum). The U-Bahn has a stop so you can travel to other locations in the city in no time.

alexanderplatz tv tower

The TV-tower of Berlin is located on the Alexanderplatz. A cosy square where there is always something to do or see!

Book tickets online for the Fernsehturm

In order to improve the visitor experience, only a certain number of people are allowed upstairs every hour and the restaurant has to be booked in advance for at least a couple of days. Fortunately, you can book your tickets in advance. Below is a list of the most frequently purchased tickets:

 

» All tickets for the Fernsehturm

 

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Hi, I'm Sam Van den Haute. The last three years I've been traveling the world almost constantly. Heading out for an adventure and visiting the most beautiful places are what I love to do! Let me inspire you with great stories, beautiful pictures and handy tips from my adventures and travels. On my facebook page and instagram account you'll get to see the latest updates and photos to inspire you for your next vacation.
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