From Prussia with Love: Visiting Five Potsdam Palaces in One Day

So just how many castles and palaces can you visit in a day? Of course that depends on lots of things, especially whether the places you visit are open or closed to the public. Probably my record for castles actually open to visitors is five. Where I achieved this feat? In Potsdam, a preferred residence of the Prussian kings and the German Kaiser until 1918 just outside of Berlin. And while I managed to squeeze in five in a day, you could actually visit about three times as many palaces if you like in Potsdam.
Pro tip of the day: Get yourself a sanssouci+ ticket that allows entrance to all of the plentiful palaces of Potsdam in a day. With it, you book a fixed admission time slot for viewing Schloss Sanssouci. To be able to better plan the day, I chose mine for shortly after 10am. The private summer residence of King Friedrich the Great of Prussia is always the most crowded of places in Potsdam. While it certainly is one of the most famous palaces in all of Germany, it is actually fairly small compromising of only ten principal rooms. Learn all about Schloss Sanssouci.
Next up on the agenda were the neighbouring Neue Kammern, or New Chambers, in English. While being fairly little known in the grander scheme of things, it is a fascinating place to visit. The palace, formerly an orangery and thus a little nondescript from the outside, includes a succession of elaborately decorated banquet rooms and suites furnished by the leading artists of Rococo era. Built as a guest house for royal visitors, the New Chambers are almost like a more spacious version of Schloss Sanssouci, which they are located right next to. Neglected by many visitors in favour of the more famous palaces, they are perhaps my personal insider's tip for any Potsdam trip. Discover more about the Neue Kammern.
Literally up, up I went to the next palace of the day: The Orangerieschloss or Orangery Palace. Make sure that whenever you visit, you head up all the way to the top of this Italian Renaissance-inspired building as it offers stunning views over the rest of Potsdam, which in itself may just be one of Germany's prettiest towns. Sliding around the Orangerieschloss in the once obligatory but these days much less common slippers, you will also come across perhaps the most beautiful rooms in all of Potsdam's palaces, the Raphael Hall. See and read a lot more of the Orangerieschloss here.
Schloss Charlottenhof is a bit of a rarity among the palaces of Park Sanssouci as it is a lot less elaborate and more of a cozy family home. It is also the perhaps least known of the plentiful palaces of Potsdam - and not to be confused with Schloss Charlottenburg in nearby Berlin. It was built for the "romanticist on the throne", the future King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia, in Neo-Classical style. Who was the architect behind this little treasure? Read more on Schloss Charlottenhof here.
Last but very certainly not least on my visit to Park Sanssouci - and a palace must-see on any trip to Potsdam - is the Neues Palais. Built as a guest house by King Friedrich II, it is the largest palace of all of Potsdam. The King himself described the palace as a bravado to represent Prussia's rise to a major European power under his rule. Of the over 200 rooms, four principal gathering rooms, the Marble Gallery, the Marble Hall, the Grotto Hall and the Upper Gallery, as well as a theatre were available for royal functions, balls and state occasions. To discover more about the New Palace, check out this post.
That wasn't quite enough for you yet? Park Sanssouci includes all kinds of different other smaller sights that are well worth discovering. The Chinese House is just one of the many. Others include the Picture Gallery, the Palace Kitchen, the Historic Windmill, the Norman Tower on Ruinenberg, the Roman Baths, the Belvedere Tower and much more.

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