An old Russian colony, created in 1826-27 upon the request of Frederick Wilhelm III

TravelCurious Tip

If it’s a cold day, head into the Russian restaurant in Alexandrowka - they serve delicious bowls of piping-hot Borscht.

In the north of Potsdam, near the southern end of the pretty Waldpark, you can find thirteen simple, rustic wooden houses. They were built in 1827 on the specific orders of Prussian king Friedrich Wilhelm III, who wished to demonstrate the depth of his friendship with Czar Alexander of Russia. To this end, he built what became known as “The Russian Colony”, a dedicated space where Russian singers living in Prussia could relax and practise their art at leisure. It was designed in imitation of a village near St. Petersburg, and soon became much beloved of the homesick Russians. In 1999, it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

A Russian Renaissance

These days, a few descendants of the original inhabitants still live in the area, and in recent years there has been a big effort to restore Alexandrowka to its original form. Houses 2 and 8 have been faithfully rebuilt according to their original specifications, and in 2005 the Museum Alexandrowka was opened inside the former. It’s a simple place, but gives a great insight into how people live in the colony.

Local Russian Cuisine

Take a walk around, and you could almost be in Russia. There’s an Orthodox church, and even a restaurant serving traditional Russian fare. It seems remarkable that this place survived 12 years of Nazi rule, even after Germany’s 1941 declaration of war on the Soviet Union. It’s an unusual attraction, but is certainly worth a visit if you’re in the area.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Berlin
Dutch Quarter
The Dutch Quarter is a neighbourhood of 169 beautifully preserved red Dutch brick houses, built from 1733 to 1740
Sanssouci Palace
Often described as the Versailles of Germany. It is the former summer palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia
Sanssouci Palace Gardens
Walk by the terraced gardens and see the magnificence of the park surrounding the Palace.
It is now one of the most-visited cities in Germany, home to magnificent palaces and elegant gardens.
Schloss Cecilienhof Palace
The location of the Potsdam conference. Where Churchill, Truman and Stalin partitioned post-war Europe in 1945
Stasi Prison
A former East German prison, which cruelly remanded political prisoners secretly for decades

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