|Zoo Station – officially called Bahnhof Berlin Zoologischer Garten – was West Berlin’s most important traffic hub throughout the Cold War period. Located right next to the city’s Zoo (Zoologischer Garten), from which it takes its name, the station pulls together the underground (U-Bahn), metro (S-Bahn) and mainline railway networks.
Berlin’s largest bus terminal is also located in front of the station on Hardenbergplatz. However, it is only local buses that stop here. The main terminal for regional and long distance buses is adjacent to the city’s trade fair centre (Messe), near the radio tower (Funkturm) and just a mile or so from the Olympic Stadium.
Soon to be subbed
The fact that with only two main rail tracks Bahnhof Zoo nevertheless became West Berlin’s most important long distance railway station is one of the curious phenomena of the Cold War period. When construction of the city’s new main station with the very wordy name ‘Berlin Hauptbahnhof – Lehrter Bahnhof’ (Berlin Main Station – Lehrter Station) is completed and the station is fully opened (scheduled for 2006), ‘Zoo Station’ – the inspiration for U2’s song of the same name - is likely to loose some of its former significance.
Zoologischer Garten is in former West Berlin. The station is very near to the Kaiser Wilhelm Gedächtniskirche (Memorial Church) and Kurfürstendamm, a glizty shopping street in its heyday.
Map - Area around Zoo Station
|"Zoo Station" - one of Berlin's transport hubs|
Until the new station is opened, Zoologischer Garten will remain the main arrival point into Berlin for trains from many other areas of Germany and Europe. These include direct trains to/from 7 other World Cup venues as follows:
- Frankfurt am Main (Frankfurt, Basel or Zurich trains), c. 4 hrs
- Hamburg (Hamburg or Amsterdam trains), c. 2 hrs 30 mins
- Cologne, c. 4 hrs 20 mins
- Hanover (Amsterdam or Cologne/Bonn airport trains), c. 1 hrs 30 mins
- Leipzig, c. 2 hrs
- Munich, c. 7 hrs
- Nuremberg, (Munich trains), c. 5 hrs
Metro (S-Bahn) lines S3, S5, S9 and S75 all run through Zoo Station. Just outside the main station building you'll also find the Zoo underground (U-Bahn) station, served by the U2, U9 and U12. Click here for directions from Zoologischer Garten to the Olympic Stadium.
Lots. As mentioned above, the famous half-bombed out Memorial Church and the Ku'damm are just around the corner. If it's a nice day and you fancy a 30 minute walk through the Tiergarten park, the Victory Column, Societ War Memorial, Reichstag and Brandenburg Gate are also all within reach. Several walking tours of the city - in English - also start from here, such as those run by Insider Tours and Berlin Walks.