It would be impossible to explore the vast exhibits in Berlin’s Deutsches Technikmuseum in just one visit. The largest exhibits of the Berlin Technology Museum cover the museum’s transport collection. You will also find every aspect of industrial technology over a massive exhibition complex.
The museum is located not far from Potzdamer Place and conveniently located near Gleisdreieck U-Bahn. An historical industrial site, once the goods yard of the former Anhalter Guterbahnhof railway station now houses the collection.
Covering an area of 26,500 square metres it is one of the largest technology museums in Europe, with exhibits displayed over a number of separate buildings.
Explore the Berlin Technology Museum
The museum explores technology from the earliest industrial age machines, through to internet and space technology.
Transport is the museum’s largest collection- planes, trains, automobiles and shipping. The museum also covers a wide spectrum of industrial technology. Remnants of the former industrial site includes two windmills, a water mill, a smithy and a brewery.
Exhibits also cover the technology of weaving and looms, jewellery making, photography, printing, radios and even the latest internet technology.
You will find not only static displays but a range of interactive activities. These include paper making, grain shredding and a production line using the workings of numerous historical machines.
The science centre provides the opportunity to engage in a number of experiments involving electricity, magnets and lighting.
When visiting the Deutsches Technikmuseum, you really need to identify the few areas which really interest you to explore.
During our visit we chose the transport exhibits, with a look at the former brewery.
The history of Craft Brewing.
Old Brewery, German Technology Museum
Craft brewing is an art which seemed lost during the 20th century, when machinery took over the work of manual brewers.
The craft is making a resurgence in Berlin and the rest of the world. The historic brewery gives an insight into the methods used in the past.
Set over four levels, the brewery exhibition shows the developments of brewing from the manual craft brewers of the 19th century, before industry and science changed the art of brewing.
The copper vats in the brewing room date back to 1909, with shining hand wheels and pipes which were used as part of the manual brewing methods.
Tiled wash rooms show where the grain was hand washed prior to brewing. Numerous displays exhibit brewing artifacts from a bygone era.
200 years of aviation history
The massive aviation halls display covers 200 years of German aviation. From the earliest aviation developments, through to space technology.
The display spans from the first balloon flights in the 18th century, to more modern aviation history. It includes the German contributions to modern space technology.
A number of the displays explain not only the technology, but also the ways in which the planes were used and the fates of those who flew them.
Some of the war time relics may be confronting, but they also give a very human aspect to world history.
Here you can explore static displays at floor level, or planes suspended from the rafters to simulate their flight mode.
History of German rail transport.
Walking through the archways of the old Anhalter Bahnhof station, we entered the original engine shed. Here the Museum houses over 40 historical rail vehicles. Among the exhibits are steam engines, luxury diner carriages and former royal trains, to the very latest in locomotive technology.
One of the most poignant exhibits was a carriage from one of the freight trains used to transport Jews during the Holocaust
Like most museums, they rely heavily on the volunteer efforts of rail enthusiasts to restore and maintain the exhibits. Some are still driven out onto the tracks for interactive displays.
The collection also exhibits a range of rail parephernalia, from uniforms to tickets and dining car menus.
In the marine hall, “Lifeworld Ship” you can explore everything from submarines and freight ships to sailing boats. Set over three floors, over 1,000 exhibits tell the tale of seafaring life.
Exhibits cover both inland and marine navigation. From wooden ships to iron and the transition from sailing boats to steam.
Displays include technological developments in navigation, as well as the ancillary industries of rope making, sail making and the manufacture of nautical instruments.
River barge exploring inland navigation at Deutsches Technikmuseum
Only a small selection of the museum’s car collection is on display at the museum, by far the smallest in the museum.
Exhibits include high-wheeled bicycles, horse drawn carriages and a selection of electric vehicles. This was one of the many halls we had insufficient time to explore – a very good reason to return.
Visiting the Deutsches Technikmuseum
The Deutsches Technikmuseum is open Tuesday to Friday 9-5.30 and 10-6 on weekends. All the display information is exclusively in German, so we were pleased to have a German speaking guide with us on the day of our visit. An English audio guide is also available.