Teufelsberg (“Devil's Mountain,”) is a hill composed of an estimated 40 million cubic feet (12 million cubic meters) of war rubble–around 400,000 bombed houses–north of Berlin’s Grunewald forest. Reaching 394 feet (120 meters) above sea level, the manmade hill is still home to the abandoned listening station used by the Americans and British during the Cold War to gather intelligence in Russian-controlled East Germany.
Three bulbous globes–two radomes perched atop three-story-high buildings and a third on a building six stories higher–remain, though they are covered with street art and in a questionable state of repair. Eintritt Verboten (“Entrance Forbidden”) signs and fencing keep the curious visitor out of the former spy station, but it is possible to take a tour of parts of the interior for a small cost.
The view over the Grunewald, across Berlin and up to the Havel is one of the best in the city. After looking past the green forest in all directions, visitors will see the Fernsehturm and Berliner Dom gleaming in the east, and sailing boats on the Havel river in the west. Though the area has been described as looking like “a post-apocalyptic movie set,” locals meet at the Teufelsberg in the summer for picnics and in the winter for sledding and snowball fights.
Insider’s Tip: Weekends are quite busy, so it’s best to opt for a tour of the Teufelsberg during the week if you’d like to bypass the crowds.
To reach the Teufelsberg, take the S-Bahn (S9 or S75) to Heerstraße; or the S1 to Grunewald and walk or cycle from there. By car, park in the on-site lot and then walk along the paved ‘Dragonfly Street’ path until you come to the fence. Daytime is best for observation purposes — Teufelsberg provides great city views, as you’d expect from Berlin’s highest ‘mountain.’