The seat of Germany’s Parliament and one of Berlin’s most recognizable landmarks, the Reichstag building is an impressive feat of 19th-century architecture, with a futuristic glass dome and classical columns on its facade. The structure stands proudly on the River Spree’s southern bank, a stoic reminder of Berlin’s turbulent history.
Climb the spiral walkway of the Reichstag’s multi-tiered glass dome to enjoy panoramic views of Berlin from the rooftop terrace and restaurant, take an audio tour, or stroll the vast lawn to admire the building’s striking facade. For an in-depth look at the Reichstag’s pivotal role in German history, visit on a guided walking or bike tour of the Government District. It’s also possible to admire the building’s exterior on a Berlin city tour, pass by on a scenic cruise along the River Spree, or visit on hop-on, hop-off bus tour.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Reichstag building is a must-see for first-time visitors to Berlin.
- Entrance to the Reichstag is free, but visitors must register in advance at the German Bundestag Service Centre.
- All visitors must present a passport or official identification card upon arrival.
- Security checks are carried out on all belongings; large bags are not allowed inside.
- Audio guides are available in 11 different languages.
- The Reichstag is fully wheelchair accessible.
How to Get There
The Reichstag is located on Scheidemannstraße in West Berlin, at the northeastern corner of Tiergarten Park. The closest U-Bahn and S-Bahn station is Brandenburger Tor. The building is also a short walk from neighboring attractions such as Brandenburg Gate, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (the Holocaust Memorial), and Potsdamer Platz.
When to Get There
The Reichstag is open daily until midnight. It can get extremely busy, especially during summer, so it’s best to visit on a weekday or choose an early-morning time slot to avoid crowds. For a picturesque experience, visit the glass dome after nightfall to enjoy a dazzling view of Berlin’s illuminated skyline.
History of the Reichstag Building
The original Reichstag building—a neo-Renaissance design by Paul Wallot—opened its doors in 1894. It was the seat of the German Parliament (the Bundestag) until Hitler took office in 1933, when the building was badly damaged by a fire and abandoned. Further damaged by World War II bombing, the Reichstag served as a museum throughout the Cold War. Finally, it was restored and reopened in 1990 after the German Reunification, complete with its now-iconic glass dome—the creation of acclaimed British architect Norman Foster.