The Majakowskiring is one of the strangest areas of Berlin. It is a posh neighborhood with large villas and at the same time the weeds crawl out of the concrete. When the GDR still existed and you entered Majakowskiring, you would see a large wall and an entrance boot.
GDR Leaders at Majakowskiring
In the fifties it was not easy to access Majakowskiring. It was not only a place where the famous writers of the GDR lived close by. Majakowskiring was more famous for it’s other inhabitants: the leaders of the GDR.
Communism tries to give people the same opportunities and payment and the idea is to treat people equally. But that’s the ideal theory. At Majakowskiring you will see what communism meant practically. Although you might expect something else in a street named after the wild, mad Russian poet Wladimir Majakowski, the GDR leaders led a secluded live in their villas away from Berlin’s city centre.
If you will visit the Majakowskiring you can still see where GDR leader Otto Grotewohl and Johannes Becher lived.The house of GDR leader ‘pointy beard’ Walter Ulbricht doesn’t exist anymore. When he died, all his properties were demolished. He had to be eradicated from history, it seems. So don’t bother looking for the villa he lived in because only the foundation of his house remains.
The GDR leaders lived here comfortably and secluded, until the uprisings in 1953. When the laborers of Karl Marx Allee put down their work and organized a strike with the other hard working people of Berlin, the GDR leaders at Majakowskiring became pretty nervous.
The Pankow neighborhood where Majakowskiring is situated is quite a long walk from Berlin’s city centre. But still they were afraid an angry Berlin mob would walk an extra mile and knock on the door of their Majakowskiring villa’s. Berlin’s city centre felt too close and they went looking for a place further away from their own people in Berlin.
They finally found this place and packed their bags to build up a new, even more secluded life at the walls of the Waldsiedlung in Wandlitz, just outside Berlin. Further away from angry mobs, in the quit bushes and under the tall trees of Brandenburg.
We show the hidden gems of Berlin, like an abandoned amusement park near the city centre of Berlin with headless dino’s and a ferris wheel that still spins in the wind. At RAW in Friedrichshain you will find great graffiti with pink fish and mad captains with large moustaches. And what about Berlin’s bathing culture! At the Badeschiff in Treptow you can swim in a swimming pool that floats in the river Spree. Imagine the view! At Stadtbad Prenzlauer Berg in the Oderberger Strasse you can see the fallen angels and fat bellied watergods of the ruined swimming pool that is being renovated right now.
After the 1953 uprising the GDR leaders felt very uncomfortable living to close to the centre of Berlin. They took off to Wandlitz, just outside Berlin, where they lived with a large wall around the premises. The people of the GDR all thought the GDR leaders lived in Wandlitz, surrounded by gold and luxury. We will show you what life really was like for the leaders of the GDR at this weird, walled sector just outside Berlin.
Near the river Spree is East Germany’s biggest amusement park. In ruins. Back in the seventies children screamed and had a lot of fun in the theme park. But now, it is awfully quiet. The whitewater course is covered in a layer of crumbled autumn leaves. The dinosaurs are daubed with graffiti and some missing a head or leg. The Ferris wheel moves slowly in the wind.
Watergods with big bellies, turtles, octopusses and big fish all swim over the facade of Stadtbad Prenzlauer Berg. But the stone angels are turning green because they have been lying on the wet ground for so long. The swimmingpool Stadtbad Prenzlauer Berg at Oderbergerstrasse used to be loved, but now it is in ruins.
Friedrichshain is RAW. Raw because the district is rough and full of ragged buildings and alternative people. But also Raw because of the R.A.W. gelande, an area near the river Spree. The former factory is in ruins. But that doesn’t mean nothing is happening anymore. You will find great graffiti here and Berlin’s creative people.
The river Spree doesn’t look very attractive to go swimming. But in Treptow you will see people near the Spree shore. Not to dive in the brown river water. But to visit the Badeschiff in Treptow. A large swimming pool that is situated in the river Spree. Imagine the views you have on the river. Even in the wintertime it is great to go here to poodle or go as fast as you can in this pool.