Anupam Bansal,
Malini Kochupillai

Architectural Guide


Maholy Nagy

Internationale Zeitschrift
Für Visuelle Kultur

( English, German, French, Czech)


Wilfried Wang,
Dan Sylvester

Hans Scharoun

Berlin 1956-1963



         City Guide

                    Berlin: Hidden Places 

                    Home     Index of Districts     Index of Themes     Index of Persons              About us    Deutsch 

(Ruins of the Franciscan Monastery)


Architectural Centre

Babylon Cinema

Anatomical Theatre

The Deserted Room

Luisenst. Canal Gardens

Franciscan Monastery

Künstlerheim Luise

Lunch Lecture Guggenh.  

Ackerstr. Market Hall

Room of Silence

Tajikistan Tearoom

St. Michael's Church

Nicolai House
Mori-Ogai Memorial
Honigmond Hotels

Berlin Teahouse


The Church of the Franciscan Monastery, dating from the middle of the thirteenth century, is the oldest and most beautiful Gothic building in Berlin. In 1574 the monastery was converted to a grammar school. The school produced its own dynasty of teachers, the Bellermanns, and famous pupils like Friedrich Schleiermacher, Karl Friedrich Schinkel and Otto von Bismarck. 
The school continues to this day, and its legendary reputation is still cultivated elsewhere in the city. In 1945 the church was badly damaged, and after the war it was kept as a ruin. The proximity of Alexanderplatz heightens its dramatic impact even more. You can view the giant shape of the television tower directly through the open roof and the holes in the walls. 
In 1992 the association ‘Church Ruins’ was founded, which campaigns for the highly atmospheric ruins to be utilised by the arts. In the summer months, musical and theatrical performances, plus readings and exhibitions, take place in the open air. One negative effect of this busy cultural programme is that what was once an undefined space you could stumble on and relish as a unique find, now creaks under the weight of the sheer amount of culture it offers. The city stroller will often find the gates closed.
From the monastery church, a pleasant path leads to Waisenstraße along remains of the old city wall, past the historic restaurant “Zur letzen Instanz” and over the cemetery of the Parochialkirche to that other magnificent church ruin.



Address: Klosterstr. 73A, 10179 Berlin, +49 (0)30 28044676,
Hours of opening: daily 12.00-18.00, except Mon
Bus, Tube, Tram: U2 Klosterstr; Bus 248 Berliner Rathaus