Tempelhof Airport

Berlin, Germany

Tempelhof was designated as an airport by the Ministry of Transport on 8 October 1923. The old terminal was originally constructed in 1927. In anticipation of increasing air traffic, the Nazi government began a massive reconstruction in the mid-1930s. While it was occasionally cited as the world's oldest operating commercial airport, the title was disputed by several other airports, and is no longer an issue since its closure.

Tempelhof was one of Europe's three iconic pre-World War II airports, the others being London's now defunct Croydon Airport and the old Paris – Le Bourget Airport. It acquired a further iconic status as the centre of the Berlin Airlift of 1948-49. One of the airport's most distinctive features is its large, canopy-style roof, which was able to accommodate most contemporary airliners in the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s, protecting passengers from the elements. Tempelhof Airport's main building was once among the top 20 largest buildings on earth; in contrast, it formerly had the world's smallest duty-free shop.

Tempelhof Airport closed all operations on 30 October 2008, despite the efforts of some protesters to prevent the closure. A non-binding referendum was held on 27 April 2008 against the impending closure but failed due to low voter turnout.

Tempelhof has been used since closing to host numerous fairs and events. The fields will be used as a park indefinitely.



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09L/27R, Berlin, Germany
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Founded: 1923
Category: Miscellaneous historic sites in Germany
Historical period: Weimar Republic (Germany)


4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Mike Malone (2 months ago)
Quick visit into this historical place. Unfortunately we were at the time when no tours were available. However it was nice to get into tower (free) and experience the huge field and view.
Irma Zandl (2 months ago)
FASCINATING tour of this former airport. It's only accessible by guided tour but if you are at all interested in history and architecture, it's absolutely worthwhile.
Christine Morrison (3 months ago)
We took a 2 hour guided tour in English, and it was a fascinating insight into the building and its use. Christine, our guide was excellent and gave a lot of information about the place. Would thoroughly recommend it as a place to visit!
Matthew Morgan (4 months ago)
Booked a tour a month in advance and never could have imagined how informative and inspiring the experience would be. So much history in the walls of this building and even in the surrounding areas. With so many rooms and so many stories, you simply must make the time to participate in one of the tours. Just make sure to use the bathroom first and wear some comfy shoes!
Ernie Tech (4 months ago)
I really have to hand to the city of Berlin. That they have resisted push of developers and have maintained this as a public use space is not only impressive, but very forward looking as this is a place that will always be unique and important and all set Berlin aside as a true champion of history. Now I have read some people complain that it's just a big empty lawn, and it first glance it might seem that way. And that the people on their bikes go too fast and that frankly it's not the cleanest place in the world. But that is up to the people of Berlin to change. They know what they want and they will make the changes they see fit. I think it is a very iconic space and I would come back here in a heartbeat just to sit and look at the world around me and realize how much pain Germany has suffered his history. We have to keep places like this to remind us not to do stuff like was done in Berlin again.
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