• Visitors at the Futurium at the LNDM Berlin 2022.

    10 tips for the summer

Do you get bored during the holidays? The Brain City Berlin offers a whole load of variety! Whether it’s the Long Night of Museums, experiments in the laboratory, guided tours or science slams – in summer, inquisitive people and hobby researchers can explore new things everywhere. Many offers are free of charge. Here are our holiday favourites.

  1. Dinosaurs, bees and flowers
    Not only the famous T-Rex Tristan Otto, who returned to Berlin from Copenhagen at the beginning of 2023, can be marvelled at on the family tour “Dinosaurs!” in Berlin’s Natural History Museum. You can also see the 1.4 by 2 metre original skull of a Triceratops, which has been competing with it as the main attraction since April. Or the approximately 13 metre high Giraffatitan. The tour, which is mainly offered at weekends, leads through the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. On the other hand, if you want to learn more about pollinator insects and bee-friendly gardens, you can do so by walking through the garden work of art Pollinator Pathmaker. It was designed and created by the British artist Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg.

    Family tour “Dinosaurs!”, Berlin Natural History Museum, Invalidenstrasse 43, 10115 Berlin, Friday to Sunday, varying times, tickets 5 EUR, reduced. 2 EUR
    “Pollinator Pathmaker: Live speaker in the garden”, Tuesday, 25 July 2023, 10:00 to 12:00, free of charge 
    “Nature Journalling in the Pollinator Pathmaker Garden”, drawing course, Monday, 24 July 2023, 17:00 to 20:00, free of charge, max. 15 people

  2. Save trees with an APP
    On hot summer days, the trees get thirsty. With “Giess den Kiez” (“Water the district”) the CityLAB invites all Berliners to water endangered city trees. Whether lime, elm or beech – the app shows exactly where the 801,195 street and park trees are in Berlin on an interactive map. It also provides information on the species and age, how much water the trees currently need and when they were last watered. If you want to water a tree regularly, you can also adopt it.

    giessdenkiez.de (German only)
  3.  Research at the bathing lake
    Summer time means swimming season! But science is even there when sunbathing, splashing around and swimming: Various citizen science projects deal with the topics of water, bathing and water quality. In the “Bäderleben” (“Bathing experience”) project, for example, spending time in your favourite pool can be used to collect information for a nationwide pool wiki. And “Coastwards” is about assessing the risks of the sea level rise using “coastal selfies” from around the world.

    More citizen science projects for the summer at buergerwissenschaften.de (German only)
  4. Learn more about the brain
    Our brain is a book with seven seals – its structures and functions are still not understood in many respects. The special exhibition “Das Gehirn in Wissenschaft und Kunst” (“The brain in science and art”) in the Berlin Museum of Medical History (BMM) of the Charité, which only reopened in mid-June, reveals more about the state of research. It shows where perception, feeling, memory and thinking are located and how the individual brain regions are networked to form higher functional units. Consciously, it also asks about the I and the self. The permanent exhibition of the BMM “On the trail of life” is also worth seeing: Around 750 exhibits tell the story of 300 years of medical history.

    Berlin Museum of Medical History, Charitépl. 1, 10117 Berlin, Tue/Thu/Fri/Sun: 10:00 to 17:00; Wed/Sat: 10:00 to 19:00. Entry 9 EUR, reduced 4 EUR
  5. Student experiments in the glass laboratory
    The “Gläsernes Labor (“Glass Laboratory”) on the grounds of the Science and Biotechnology Park Campus Berlin-Buch offers secondary school students interesting insights into laboratory work. The laboratory schedule includes experimental courses on molecular biology, cell biology, neurobiology, chemistry, radioactivity and ecology. Project weeks take place here during the summer holidays. The courses offered deal, for example, with computer-assisted image recognition in cell biology, the cloning of human genes or DNA barcoding. At the end of each course, participants receive a certificate.

    Gläsernes Labor, Robert-Rössle-Str. 10 13125 Berlin, the number of participants is limited, see website for dates and participation fee
  6. Exciting facts about plants
    Which wild seeds in the forest and meadow can you eat without hesitation? What other culinary delights does the forest offer? And what did the famous painter and polymath Leonardo da Vinci learn from nature? You can learn a lot about the flora during the tours of the Berlin Botanic Garden. And of course the garden itself and the Botanical Museum nestled in it are always worth a visit. Even if it’s just to relax on a bench in the shade. With around 20,000 plant species, the Berlin Botanic Garden is the largest in Germany and one of the most important in the world. 

    Botanic Garden Berlin, Königin-Luise-Platz, 14195 Berlin, participation fee for the tours: 8 EUR, reduced 3 EUR, registration see website; opening hours botanical garden: 9:00 to 20:00; 6 EUR, reduced 3 EUR
  7. Exploring embodiment and identity in transition
    The art and research platform Art Laboratory Berlin operates at the interface of art, science and technology. It presents art that relates to current issues on current research topics (Art & Science). Currently on the ALB program: the event series “Permeable bodies”:
    Reading groups, lectures, workshops and podcasts deal with the human body. Artistically and feministically, they explore embodiment and identity in transition. And they explore our connection and interaction with the environment.

    Art Laboratory Berlin, Prinzenallee 34, 13359 Berlin, dates see website, some events take place online
  8. Science slam in the planetarium
    Science slams prove time and again that science can also be entertaining. In the “Zeiss Großplantarium (“Zeiss major planetarium”), scientists slam “under the starry sky”. They each present their research topics, questions, facts and theses for ten minutes. Creative aids such as performance inserts, props or visualisations are expressly permitted. The audience chooses the winner. A star show with a journey to distant galaxies is the sparkling finale every time. 

    Zeiss Großplanetarium, Prenzlauer Allee 80,10405 Berlin, the shows start at 20:00, Tickets: 12 EUR, reduced 10 EUR, dates see website
  9. “Future Food” and “Sounds of Berlin”
    Those who are inquisitive as well as art enthusiasts will get their money’s worth on the night from 26-27 August. More than 70 museums are taking part in the Long Night of Museums with around 750 events. The motto this year is: “Sounds of Berlin”. Visitors embark on an acoustic journey through Berlin’s museums. The Berlin Natural History Museum will also be there again, as will the German Museum of Technology – and of course the Futurium: As a midnight snack, there is “Future Food Impulse to try and to listen to”, i.e.: Short talks on the food of the future and music. The full program will be available on the Long Night of Museums website from 26 July.

    Long Night of Museums, 26 August, 18:00 to 02:00, tickets: 31 July to 13 August: 12 EUR, reduced 10 EUR, 14 to 26 August: 18 EUR, reduced 12 EUR, Children up to the age of 12 free
  10. Holiday workshops in the spirit of Humboldt
    Programming holograms, learning more about the history of masks, communicating with nature: The Humboldt Forum’s holiday program is colourful, instructive and entertaining. Plus: The participating children and adolescents can give free rein to their creativity. The workshops are mostly linked thematically to exhibitions in the building. Practical: While the children take part in the workshops, parents can stroll through the Humboldt Forum at their leisure. Or have a snack at the Forum Café. (vdo)

    Holiday courses at the Humboldt Forum, Schlossplatz, 10178 Berlin, see website for ticket prices and dates  

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