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Active Travels: Berlin’s Airport Park

Children ride bicycles on a runway at former Tempelhof airport on September 11, 2011 in Berlin, Germany

by Steve Jermanok

The big news out of Berlin this year is the opening of the $3.4 billion Berlin-Brandenburg International Airport, set to make its debut on June 3rd. However, I’m more excited at what Berlin did with its former airport, Tempelhof, which is now the vast Tempelhofer Freiheit public park. Families come to bike and roller blade on the old runways and picnic on the grounds. Germany has always been at the forefront of reclaiming former industrial spaces and transforming them into parks. Landschaftspark in Duisburg-Nord is a former coal and steel plant that now features a high ropes course. It’s wonderful to see urban designers blurring the line between civilization and nature to create parks from former contaminated sites, landfills, abandoned manufacturing plants, and older airports.

 

 

  Steve Jermanok  As a columnist for National Geographic Adventure, adventure travel expert at Budget Travel, and regular contributor on outdoor recreation for Outside, Men’s Journal, Health, and Sierra, Steve Jermanok has written more than 1,000 articles on the outdoors.He’s also authored or co-authored 11 books, including Outside Magazine’s Adventure Guide to New England and Men’s Journal’s The Great Life. His latest book is Go Now! Put Your Life on Pause and See the World. He’s currently an adventure travel expert at Away.com and blogs daily at Active Travels. Twitter @ActiveTravels

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