Berlin’s Olympic Stadium is a 74,000 seater domed stadium home to dozens of international sports competitions, concerts, exhibitions and events. However, it’s history hasn’t always been one of international acceptance and encouragement.
Built for the 1936 Olympic Games, the stadium was commissioned by the Nazi’s, and the construction was heavily watched over by Hitler himself. In fact, you can still see the grey, spartan-style Nazi influences on the exterior architecture, which is reminiscent of the Colosseum in Rome.
Following the Olympic Games the stadium has become an important footnote in post WWII history, being only minutely damaged during the air strikes. Once Berlin was taken by the allies the British moved into the grounds and made the headquarters of their operations in the city. On the May Field (Maifield) just behind the main stadium, each year tens of thousands of soldiers and civilians would gather to celebrate the Queen’s official birthday.
Fast forward to the present and the stadium is now a vibrant hive of international prestige. Berlin based football team Hertha Berlin have made it home, as well as games from two separate Fifa World Cup competitions being held here throughout the years. (In fact, it was in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium that Zinedine Zidane delivered his famous head-butt in the 2006 Fifa World Cup final). Renowned international music acts have also played here, ranging from AC:DC, Madonna and the Rolling Stones, with Depeche Mode and Bon Jovi set to return in 2013.
Experiencing this iconic landmark is an important part of any trip to Berlin and it’s sheer size means planning is advised.
To read the whole article, visit the Oh-Berlin blog where we give you more information about tours and sightseeing options, as well as further information and interesting fact’s about Berlin’s Olympic Stadium.