Potsdam’s endless assortment of Prussian palaces, parks and gardens have earned it the nickname ‘Versailles of the North’. Over a million tourists visit Brandenburg’s state capital each year to explore its historic sites and wonderful landscape intertwined with rivers and lakes.
Potsdam is a veritable open-air history exhibition, with its many palaces (known as schlosses) and parks the result of it being a favoured residence of Prussian kings for two centuries. Cecilienhof Palace played a significant part in world history when it was used for the Potsdam Conference of 1945. Here, Churchill, Truman and Stalin set out the plans for post-war peace. Today, the venue hosts an exhibition which recreates the famous summit, compete with the famous round table where the key figures had their meetings. There’s also the rococo masterpiece of Schloss Sanssouci, once the summer palace of Frederick the Great. Surrounded by a gigantic park, it’s a great place to stroll down various meandering paths and explore the magnificent palace interiors. The city is also home to the Glienicke Bridge, connecting Brandenburg to Berlin. As well as marking the previous border between East and West Germany which famously fell in 1989, it’s also known as the ‘Bridge of Spies’ due to its use as a point where captured US and Soviet undercover agents were exchanged. Thanks to the city’s position on the Havel River, you can also take a cruise to take in the UNESCO-listed sights from the water.