St. Nicholas' Church (St. Nikolaikirche)
Nikolai Kirche

St. Nicholas’ Church at the Old Market (Alten Markt) is one of the most important buildings in downtown Potsdam. The Classicist Evangelical Church with its great dome was originally designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, although neither he nor his successor Ludwig Persius witnessed the completion of the building in 1850.

Several churches dating back to the thirteenth century have been built on the current site of the St. Nicholas’ Church. The church’s predecessor was consecrated in 1724 and borrowed some architectural features of the Schinkel design, including the floor plan that resembled the shape of a Greek cross. A fire destroyed the church in 1795, although restoration work was undertaken.

In 1826, Frederick William III commissioned Karl Friedrich Schinkel to design a new St. Nicholas’ Church in Potsdam. His concept included a large dome, which was inspired in part by Sir Christopher Wren's St. Paul's Cathedral in London. The construction was overseen by Schinkel’s pupil Ludwig Persius from 1830. Due to the cost, the dome was not finished until 1843 and two years after Schinkel's death when Frederick William IV pushed for the completion of the original design. The church’s final design also incorporates structural adjustments made by Persius. After Persius died in 1845, the final stages of construction were overseen by Friedrich August Stüler.

During World War II, the St. Nicholas’ Church was badly damaged during the bombing of Potsdam. In the last days of the war it was also target of Soviet artillery fire, which eventually led to its partial collapse. Reconstruction began a few years after the war, although work lasted for several decades. The St. Nicholas’ Church congregation moved to the nearby Holy Ghost Church during reconstruction. In the seventies, the church was largely restored to its original state again and it was re-consecrated in 1981. The rebuilt dome has a diameter of 24 meters and a height of 13 meters, and the impressive interior is 52 meters high.

Today, St. Nicholas’ Church is the largest church in Potsdam. For the most part, its design brings to life Schinkel's original vision. With adjustments made to improve acoustics throughout the building’s history, however, some original elements are not immediately visible including the original Greek cross layout. At the same time, the church remains one of the most impressive architectural wonders in Potsdam.

opening times
All the year long
  • Monday to Sunday: 10:00 - 18:00 clock
  • Sunday: 11:30 - 18:00 clock
St. Nikolai Church Map

Events in Potsdam

ticket sales

Music 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.


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.


Details about the Night of the Palaces can be found here.

Official Contact

Official Park Sanssouci Contact

The Foundation for Prussian Palaces and Gardens.

Phone : +49 (0)331/9694-0

Fax : +49 (0)331/9694-107