Photo Essay: A Bohemian Village Garden in Berlin

by Ekua on July 14, 2012 in captured on memory card,Germany

When you’re caught up in the bustle of a modern city, it’s hard to imagine that it may have once been a collection of villages or a settlement; that before there were apartment complexes and buses, there were farmhouses and horse drawn carts. Cities swallow up places beyond their original reach and change so rapidly that you can quickly forget very recent eras and beyond significant historical events, the everyday life of the far past doesn’t even cross many people’s minds.

Cities are often all about the moment and the immediate future, and this is especially true for the constantly changing Berlin. But in Neukölln there’s a neighborhood called Rixdorf, a former village that charmingly remains stuck in the past. Rixdorf was established around 1360, and the center of the village became known as Bohemian Rixdorf after Bohemian refugees settled there in 1737.

When I stayed in Neukölln, on my way to and from the main street, I would walk through Richardplatz, the historical center of Rixdorf where there are old farmhouses, cobblestone streets, and a blacksmith’s workshop. One day I came across a great little place called the Comenius Garden. A beautiful public garden never fails to bring out my inner Anne of Green Gables, and it gets bonus points when I find it in a city.

The garden opened in 1995 and it’s dedicated to John Amos Comenius, a 17th century Bohemian educator and writer who helped bring the world public education. The garden was built along the philosophies of Comenius and each section of the park has a deeper meaning based on his ideas and theories. In the summertime with the fruits ripening and the flowers blooming, it made for a gorgeous place to spend a sunny afternoon:

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

Comenius garden in the Rixdorf neighborhood of Neukolln, Berlin

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Jonathan Look, Jr. July 15, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Berlin seems so amazing! Can’t wait to see for myself!

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Naomi July 15, 2012 at 8:54 pm

How cute! I had no idea this place existed!!

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Ekua July 16, 2012 at 11:57 pm

@John & Naomi – Staying in Berlin for a decent amount of time and staying with a friend in an out of the way part of town helped me discover some cool spots I wouldn’t have otherwise come across!

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hannahinhanoi July 17, 2012 at 11:10 am

Ekua, these photographs are beautiful. You had your very own secret garden in Berlin. Isn’t that one of the most exciting things about cities-discovering the hidden spots and histories that go along with them?

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Ekua July 17, 2012 at 3:24 pm

Thanks, Hannah! This is how I love to travel… stumbling upon unexpected things and picking up tidbits of knowledge I wasn’t looking for!

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Andi of My Beautiful Adventures July 17, 2012 at 8:02 pm

Oh my goodness what lovely photos!

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Sunee July 20, 2012 at 11:24 am

I say this every time but it stays true: I love seeing these sights through your eyes. You take pictures of things I would never think about photographing, and it just opens my eyes to all sorts of interesting things. I especially like the pink flowers and the red creeper this time – the colours are just beautiful.

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Ekua July 22, 2012 at 7:47 pm

Thanks so much, Sunee! I really do love to find unique ways of capturing things and I’m glad you appreciate it! The colors in the garden were stunning and I really liked the mid-late afternoon lighting.

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