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As with most cities, Berlin is most photogenic during the magical light of the blue hour. At this time of the day, the residual natural light and the artificial light of street lanterns and buildings are balanced perfectly. Here are Fabian Pfitzinger’s top 5 spots for blue hour photography in Berlin.
1) Brandenburg Gate
No list of photo locations in Berlin would be complete without Berlin’s most famous landmark. If you’re determined to capture a shot of the Brandenburg Gate without a bazillion heads of tourists in your frame, then bite the bullet and get up before sunrise. If you hit this spot early in the morning, chances are you have it all to yourself.
In the evening it’s significantly more crowded, but the sun sets right behind Brandenburg Gate and with a bit of luck, a dramatic sky rounds off the composition.
2) Berlin Cathedral
The Berlin Cathedral is another location worth shooting early in the morning, especially if you’re after some shots from the opposite bank of the river Spree. The water is much calmer in the morning and thus reflections of the cathedral are clearer.
3) Reichstag Dome
To get this shot, you have to plan ahead a little. The impressive glass dome of Reichstag can be visited free of charge, but you will need to register online in advance with a valid passport. Admission tickets for time slots are limited and I recommended booking at least one week in advance (make it two or three weeks if you wanna visit during high season). Once you’re in, you can stay up there until they close at midnight. Tripods are allowed as long as you don’t disturb other visitors.
4) Observation Deck, Park Inn
One of the best cityscape views Berlin has to offer is from the rooftop terrace of the Park Inn Hotel. Located in Alexanderplatz, this is an awesome spot to have a drink, watch the sun go down and snap some images of Berlin’s skyline and TV Tower.
During summertime the terrace is open from 12 noon – 10pm and from 12 noon – 6pm during wintertime. The admission fee is 4€ and you can buy some cold drinks up there.
5) City West
The city centre of former West-Berlin has changed dramatically in recent years. The once notorious area around the train station “Zoologischer Garten” received an architectural update. The result can best be seen and photographed from the rooftop terrace of the Monkey Bar, which is part of the 25hours Hotel.
This is an awesome place to enjoy the sunset. The view from up here is really nice and popular, which means you should arrive early enough if you want to grab one of the prime seats outside on the terrace. If you just want to capture some shots though, then there’s no need to be here early. You might have to wait a little, till other people have finished taking their selfies and the corner spot of the terrace is free.
Fabian Pfitzinger is author of the SNAPP Guide to photographing Berlin. To find precise GPS coordinates and more stunning locations in and around the city download the SNAPP Guides app and view his guide.