Possibly nowhere else in Germany will you find a more lavish testament to the diverse architectural styles and gorgeous palaces as that of Park Sanssouci in the former Prussian residence city of Potsdam.
The name Potsdam is derived from the originally Slavic name Poztupimi which meant “beneath the oaks”. For lengthy periods of time the region was dominated by mighty oak trees. William I, also known as the “Soldier King”, had the oaks felled as a measure of ground stabilization during the extension of the city of Potsdam. By 1744 the Bornstedt terrain amounted to little more than a "desolate hill", so Frederick the Great had the idea of adorning its slopes with a terraced vineyard.
Thus had the park of Sanssouci been founded, and nearly every monarch up to William II would leave some trace or other in it over the ensuing decades. You can enter the park via the main entrance – the Green Gate – in the immediate proximity of Potsdam’s city centre. The 290 ha of park area are open all year round from 6am to nightfall, and entrance is free. Next to the Green Gate you’ll find the Church of Peace, located within the so-called Marlygarten (a reference to its French counterpart Marly-le-Roi).
Next, you’ll arrive at the magnificent Palace Sanssouci (French: carefree) at the top of the aforementioned vineyard. Frederick the Great commissioned the architect Georg Wenzelaus von Knobelsdorff to create a Rococo-style building in 1745 – 1747. The main path from the Palace to the New Palace, as well as the parking area by the Historic Mill are currently undergoing restoration, but are expected to be completed in time for the grand anniversary “Friederisiko” in April of 2012. Other highly recommended sites are the classicist Schloss Charlottenhof to the south-east, and the Italian renaissance-styled Orangery in the north. Evidence of 18th century chinoiserie can be found at the Chinese Teahouse and the garden pavilion, known by the name of Dragon House.
Since 1990, Potsdam is proud to have its Park Sanssouci listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. So if you’re planning a trip to Potsdam in the near future, you really shouldn’t miss an excursion to the glorious park area.
- The park is generally open all year round from 6am until nightfall. Entrance is free of charge. Voluntary donations which go towards maintaining the gardens are welcome. Valid for all parks run by the Prussian Palaces and Gardens Foundation.
Events in Potsdam
ticket salesMusic Festival in Potsdam
The Music Festival in Potsdam will be held again in June. This year's theme "Music and gardens" ubiquitous. So even on the opening day in June. Interesting and unique you can take guided tours and visits to many different places. For those interested there is an Opera Workshop.TICKETS
Details about the Music Festival in Potsdam can be found here.The concert on the eve and Night of the Palaces in Potsdam
The Park of Sanssouci and Sanssouci Palace with its terraced vineyards and the New Palace are undisputedly the most important monuments in Potsdam, therefore provides the Night of the Palaces as an excellent temporal orientation, to learn more about the state capital of Brandenburg.TICKETS
Details about the Night of the Palaces can be found here.