the berlin sachsenhausen walking tour

Know Before You Go: Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp

The Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp is situated a short train journey from Berlin. No matter how sobering the experience is, we believe it is one of the must-visit sites when visiting Berlin.

Perhaps not as ingrained in the world’s consciousness as Auschwitz or Dachau camp. It was an extremely important site and integral to the concentration camp system.

There are a number of reasons and circumstances that make Sachsenhausen unique. Not only was it the first purpose-built concentration camp within Nazi Germany. It was also the closest Concentration Camp to Berlin. Located on the outskirts of Oranienburg, just 32km to the north of German capital. To visit the official English-language page of the Sachsenhausen Concentration camp click here.

Know Before You Go Sachsenhausen Tips

Food and drinks at the camp?

A normal tour to the Scahsenhausen concentration camp usually takes about 6 hours, including the journey there and back and the 3 hours or so at the camp. If you were going there on your own steam and wanted to go into every structure and exhibition you would be at the camp all day.
Either way, it is advisable to bring some food and drink to sustain oneself.
Germany is not short of is food outlets/bakeries at train stations. So it is possible to get your provisions for the day before you even leave for Oranienburg. If not there are numerous options in Oranienburg, in the train station and beyond as well as a supermarket along the way.
There is a small café within the camp as well but this is passed quite early once you enter the camp.

Walking, and What To Wear?

Though most visits and tours are focussed on the main camp compound there is a considerable amount of walking, especially if you are walking to the camp from the station at Oranienburg. Dress for the weather and take appropriate footwear. Berlin and this part of Germany can experience extremely hot summers and cold winters and everything in between!

And naturally, dress respectfully.

When is the Camps Opening Hours?

15 March to 14 October: daily 8:30 am to 6:00 pm
15 October to 14 March: daily 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
During the winter opening times, the museums are closed on Mondays.

What is the Best way to explore the camp?

The best way to learn about the Sachsenhausen memorial is with a licensed tour guide. We think we have the best! Click here to check out a one of a kind tour of the camp.

Getting to Sachsenhausen

Getting to Oranienburg with public transport?

Getting to Sachsenhausen with public transportation from Berlin

There are thankfully a number of ways to get to Sachsenhausen/ Oranienburg with public transport. The slow-and-steady way would be to get on the S1 S-Bahn line which passes through a number of the major stations in central Berlin including Potsdamer Platz, Brandenburg Tor, Friedrichstrasse, and Gesundbrunnen. From Friedrichstrasse the journey to Oranienburg takes 45mins.

It is sobering to think that the vast majority of the 6000 Jewish citizens arrested following the Kristalnacht in November 1938 actually made their way to the camp in this manner.

The speedy option to get to Oranienburg would be to catch one of the Regional Trains, specifically the RE05. This particular line runs through the Südkreuz, Central (Hauptbahnhof) and Gesundbrunnen Stations. From Gesundbrunnen the train journey to Oranienburg takes 22mins.

What Train tickets to buy?

As previously stated the Camp is located on the outskirts of Oranienburg. Like Potsdam, it is situated in Berlin Travel Zone C, or an ABC ticket. From Central Berlin, it would cost 3.40€ each way. However, for slightly more, it is recommended to buy an A-B-C Day Pass. This currently costs 7.70€ and covers buses, trams, and trains up until 3 am.

If you are already in possession of an A-B Day pass it is possible to purchase an extension ticket for Zone C (anschlussfahrausweis) which costs currently 1.60€ each way.

Driving To Sachsenhausen from Berlin

Driving From Berlin To Sachsenhausen

There are a number of ways to drive to Sachsenhausen, weather renting a car, hiring a driver, or even taking a Birchy’s Berlin Tour. Driving there is pretty straight forward once you get out of the city. However, depending on where you leave from it may not save much time. From Alexanderplatz it can save around 20 Minutes.

Getting to the Sachsenhausen Camp from Oranienburg Station

Once at the Oranienburg Station the camp is then 2.2km/ 1.6 miles away. The 804 Bus to Malz, Anker leaves from the bus-stop opposite the train station entrance. It stops just by the entrance to the camp on Strasse der Nationen (Street of Nations). This bus is relatively infrequent, surprisingly, and depending on the time of day and year it can potentially be very, very crowded. The bus journey is also included in the ABC Travel Pass.

To walk to the camp only takes around 20 minutes. Due to the infrequent bus service, it is actually usually quicker to walk than to use public transportation.

What to look for at the Camp

For the standard tour, it really is a matter of cherry-picking the key areas of interest at the camp. Giving a siscinct overview of the camp, it’s development, and how the camp and those within it changed over time.

Must-see areas of the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp:

Tower A: entrance into the main camp compound

Infirmary, pathology and mortuary buildings: the original buildings where medical care, crime, and experimentation were undertaken.

Station Z: the remains of the purpose built execution facility

Camp kitchen: Contains a very informative exhibition on the camp between 1936 -1945. Includes some of the original artifacts from that period.

SS and Gestapo Prison: a prison within a Concentration Camp.

Barack Blocks 37 and 38: reconstructed from original components.

2 thoughts on “Know Before You Go: Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp”

  1. Pingback: Berlin Tours: Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Memorial Tour - Birchys Berlin Tours

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