Krampnitz: Nazi and Soviet military complex

Filed 20/10/2010 |
A worn soldier's jacket still hangs on the back of a rusty chair, a lapel fallen to the floor, all covered in dust. Colours can barely muster themselves from the gloom of dilapidation.
The wooden floorboards creak when stepped on, quivering with the excitement of something new after almost 20 years. All around the otherwise bare room sheets of Russian newspapers sag limply or hang from the ceiling, wallpaper reincarnation redundant now in the monotony. All quiet, all still – but for the wind outside brushing branches lightly against the window, trees’ limbs craning for a peek through the opaque panes.
Suddenly a bang! Clanking! Creaking from below. What the fuck?! I freeze. Listen. Dare not breathe. It must be a Russian soldier coming up the stairs to reclaim his jacket! A door slams. Carefully, I inch my way back out of the room, back into the hall. I nudge open the offending door across the hall. Creeeeeaaakk!!! I peer in. An empty room. A vodka bottle the sole inhabitant. Open windows swing gently in the breeze. Glass miraculously intact all these years. I assure myself I’m still alone, physically anyway. There may or may not be someone downstairs, but at least nobody’s coming up the stairs. I hope, at least. I continue on, heart in my mouth.
It was actually much easier to get into Krampnitz than I thought when looking at it from the outside. The old ‘Kaserne’ was abandoned by the Russians in 1992, and was surrounded by a high unfriendly wall which doesn’t exactly encourage unannounced guests. The Nazis who used this old military training compound before them weren’t too fond of visitors either – it wasn’t that kind of riding school – so I was quite happy none of them were around to tell me Betreten und Befahren verboten!
The site had been used by the German army since 1937 when the cavalry moved its school here from Hannover. It was also used as a driving training centre until the Russians put an end to the Nazis’ little gallop, taking over a day after they abandoned it April 26th, 1945.
Krampnitz is absolutely huge. In a state of nervous excitement I hurried from one run-down building to the next, happy as a drunk pig in shit, taking in as much as I could. Paint flaking off the walls, bathtubs pulled out of their homes, strange Russian graffiti in the attic. I scurried down dark corridors of power where first Nazis then Russians once stomped about in their boots thinking they were big and important. Offices, toilets, kitchens, dormitories – I opened every door, peered in every dark recess, everything catching my eye, entranced. Not even Adolf himself could have dissuaded me.
What must have been the clubhouse or pub still had signs on the wall outside. Huge bay windows inside must have been impressive in their day. Dammit, they were impressive now. A theatre stood beside it empty and silent. Behind another high wall there was an underground bunker. Deep, dark, absolutely huge, facing an immense industrial-looking building. Fuck knows what used to go on there.
Another building looked like it hadn’t been touched since the end of WWII; shiny wooden floors, wooden panels on the walls, destroyed Nazi eagles over fireplaces, chandeliers brought down from their lofty heights and one still hanging majestically, absolutely magnificent.
But still I hadn’t found what I was looking for. My frantic search had yielded nichts. Just as light was failing however, I found it. The tour de force. Absolutely incredible. The Eagle. Imperious in the middle of a huge cross, clutching a swastika in its claws, surrounded by four more, one in each corner. These were painted over in red paint, supposedly by the Russians who destroyed all the Nazi imagery. Apart from the Naziest Nazi image of them all that is – the flippin’ eagle.
Some people swear the eagle is real. It certainly looks the part – the attention to detail is frightening. Others point out that ‘Enemy at the Gates’ and ‘Inglourious Basterds’ were filmed here, while others again will tell you it doesn’t appear in either. I don’t know. Some of the mosaics are missing and such attention to detail for a film is extraordinary.
You’ll have to make your own minds up about that. One thing’s for sure – Krampnitz itself is very real. Einfach toll.

What
Former military training school, once used by the Nazis and Russians, now abandoned and awaiting exploration.


Where

Krampnitz, 14476 Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany.


How to get there

The RE1 regional train from Friedrichstraβe, Alexanderplatz or Hauptbahnhof will take you to Potsdam Hauptbahnhof from where you hop on a 639 bus to Krampnitzsee. Allow an hour altogether. The 639 bus goes to S+U Bahnhof Rathaus Spandau, so if you’re coming from that direction you could get the bus the opposite way. Krampnitz is about half-way between Spandau and Potsdam. I recommend cycling though. There’s a good cycle path from Spandau, although it’s a good way and you don’t want to be knackered by the time you arrive. Here it is on a map so ye can figure it out for yourselves.

Getting in
Just off the main road there’s a line of run down-looking holiday homes for rent.
These are actually former officers' houses. You can wander in past the sign which says “Betreten und Befahren verboten!” and, if anyone asks, pretend you’re thinking of renting one. Anyway, go past the last one, follow the worn path – watch out for brambles – and you’re in! Those who favour the more direct approach can simply hop over the front gate. It looks easy enough once you don’t mind barbed wire.

When to go

Preferably when the sun is shining. Daylight is best for exploring.


Difficulty rating
6/10. Tricky enough to get to but easy to get in. (Just look for the big tower, now a [hopefully abandoned] saw mill or something.)


Who to bring
Like-minded explorers. If you’re mean, people who are easily scared.

What to bring
Camera. You’d be pissed off if you made it out that far and couldn’t take photos. Bring a few snacks too – there ain’t no shops in Krampnitz – and a few Sternis for the road. You can drink them en route. Don’t forget to bring a torch for exploring those dark underground bunkers.

Dangers

As always, watch out for nosy neighbours or passing outdoor-types who can’t resist sticking their noses in places they don’t belong and getting involved when it’s none of their business. Also watch out for ticks and things like that. One of the fuckers bit me. There are mozzies too, but it’s cold enough now; they should be long gone. I didn’t spot any security guards or anything like that but again, keep your eyes peeled.

Now is the time to go to Krampnitz before it's lost to history forever, consumed by apartments, another fucking hotel or razed to the ground to make way for a golf course. Berlin seems determined to ruin all of its beautiful ruins. Don't wait any longer! Again, this guide was prepared so others can get the same enjoyment from Krampnitz I did*. Don't be greedy.

*Not admissible in a court of law. I don't care who you are.

WWII 4343869251457000601

105 comments

I'm here and I'll be lookout...
email me and let's ride! (with our cameras of course! ali@acadiacreative.com

Couldn't find the eagle, but it was awesome.

Wow really cool article. Enjoyed reading it and great shots. Been there twice now, but I have not seen the entire area. Keep up the good work.

Forgot to say that the only thing I don't completely agree with is giving out such detailed information on where your locations are. Many people are only interested in destroying these places.

Robin - not sure there are any actual plans to tear it down just yet. Only a matter of time I'm sure.

Jolman - Yes. It is.

Uexplorer - Thanks for the kind words! I checked out your blog and it's great!

Have to disagree with you about giving out detailed information though. I do it so others can go check them out too. These places are generally in pretty bad condition anyway, and I don't think vandals are going to go to too much trouble to travel just to smash up already-smashed up places. As far as I can see, it's better for people to enjoy them now before they are destroyed when they are converted to apartments, a far more scary prospect than vandals in my view.

I've been in Krampnitz two weeks ago. Here are some of the photos I took: http://informationsschaum.de/2011/02/21/kaserne-krampnitz/
I liked that place. It's a realy huge area with a lot of interesting buildings to explore.

Hello there,

I've just discovered your blog and really love it. Such a great idea to go out and explore these places before they make way for flats and hotels. Sadly I have too nervous a disposition to explore places like the Spreepark and the Iraqi embassy but ones like Teufelsberg and this look amazing and i'm tempted to ignore those "Verboten signs". Keep up the good work.

great blog! thank you very much for the info...now I have some activities for the nexts weekends!

Hi Irish B.

I want to thank you for the information, it has been a great day to go there and explore the place. it seems that there has been some kind of event going on in the big building as there were plenty of empty wine cases and loads of feathers in the floor. i was impress by the mosaics, the rhino head ant the white room was extremely ramdom...
but one thing that i was to ask you, where it was the eagle??? look for it in the fancy building everywhere, fin the mosaic in one of the rooms, the russian frescos in the wall...but couldnt find the eagle (was there a white room with a rhino head on it when you went there??...)
the bunker and the little "mine factory" was amazing. and yes, doors and windows have the tendency to open and close when they feel like it.
i also have to get in the building were all the windows are intact!!!
anyway, thank you for the detailed info and sharing your experiences with us!!!

Thanks Taran!
But if I told you where the eagle is, it would spoil all the fun of exploring! Now you have the perfect excuse to go back. A hint though - it isn't in the fancy building (although you might have suspected that by now).
I also have to go back. Krampnitz is HUGE and there's loads of exploring to be done. I certainly don't remember any rhino heads or white rooms...

thank You, Irish B.

Bufffff, Glad that the eagle is not in the fancy building. My fear was that the white room with the rhino head was the room with the eagle and some gang of artist decided to paint the whole room white. Iam planing to go back in my next visit to Berlin...this one was too short for having enough time to visit the place more than twice. Also i did not explore the building that has all the windows intact so i am really curious about that one( and this is where i suspect the big nest is hidden).

Thank you Again for sharing!!!

PS- although i did not see security or ear anyone i can tell there must be someone watching the place and they do it by car. in the little road of the complex the path of the car is well marked by fresh broken branches.

I put this, alsong with all the other places on your blog on my to-do list for this summer!

Wie wäre vielleicht nächstes Mal mit einem Artikel auf Deutsch? :D

Viel Spaß im Sommer! Ich würde gern einen Artikel auf Deutsch schreiben aber es dauert schon Ewig auf Englisch. Eigentlich wollte ich alles auf beide Sprachen machen am Anfang aber wenn ich das getan hätte, hätte ich kein Zeit zum erkunden gehabt!

Hi, love the blog, and as i have just here (Berlin), i have checked out almost all of your recommendations! I command you, sir, with your help, advice and instructions, where most of us would be lost without. Can you tell me where exactly is the building complex? It isn't marked on the map you provided, and i'm sure i'll be able to see it when we get there. We are planning to go tomorrow, if the weather is better than today. Any more help would be great!

Keep up the good work!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/hiro-protagonist/

Cheers Anteater! I checked out the link to the map and it seems to be working fine - Krampnitz ain't a big village and consists of little more than the complex. Find the houses, delve in behind them and you're there. Alternatively, look for the big long prohibitive wall and it's behind that.

Nice post... I can't say that it's entirely un-hypocritical though, after reading your comment: "watch out for ... passing outdoor-types who can’t resist sticking their noses in places they don’t belong and getting involved when it’s none of their business." Remember, many of those outdoors types who can't resist getting involved are actual Berliners who really lived here in GDR times. They arguably have much more right than you do to stick their noses into Stasi buildings when a foreigner is doing the same! ;)

Interesting point, but I think you miss mine, unless you're simply writing to cause mischief.
The passing outdoor-types I was referring to are people with no interest in abandoned buildings, or their history, but who ring the Polizei from an uncontrollable urge to inform as soon as they feel someone is doing something verboten. I'm not talking about Berliners in particular, but your average old biddy walking her dog through the forest who sees a guy taking pictures of an empty, abandoned building, and who straightaway rings the police, her sense of well-being assuaged by the notion she has fulfilled her patriotic duty in reporting to the authorities. There are quite a lot of people like this in Germany, for some reason.
As far as I'm concerned EVERYONE has a right to explore these buildings - foreigner or not. I do not think Germans have more right to explore Stasi buildings than others, simply because they were controlled and spied on for so long. It's people like that biddy in the woods who rings the police at the drop of a hat who made the Stasi possible, and who probably hark back for the good all days when everyone was kontrolliert. THESE are the people to watch out for, now as it was then.

Hey again Just thought you should uodate its the bus 638 und 639 der ist keine 629 mehr.

I went there today, amazing place have to go back soon.
Thanks again for your blog and for sharing.

Thanks for a great post.

Another easy entry: The south-east corner of the compound has a big hole in the wall right next to a bus-stop. The first building you find is the officer's mess (Kasino in German). The building across is the one that has the mosaic Eagle.

The place IS guarded. I know because I got caught. The guard drives slowly around and also walks. When he saw I was only taking photos he was quite friendly. I don't know if I would have been fined if his mood had been different. I talked with him for a while about the place. He continually complained about vandals.

See the book "The German law of torts: a comparative treatise" by Markesinis et al., page 88, for additional insight as to why they guard these places: (Use google books)

"... anyone who exercises a sufficient degree of control over a particular thing (moveable or immovable) which is likely to cause danger is under a duty to take reasonable care to ensure that this danger does not materialise (...) it is, therefore, for the defendant to exculpate himself and not - as is normal - for the plaintiff to prove the formers fault."

Translation: If you get hurt in an abandoned site it is for the owner to prove that he did everything he could to prevent you from getting hurt there. Otherwise he is automatically liable for your injuries.

You might be able to get permission from the owner if you sign a waiver of liability. Of course, that takes a lot of fun out of exploring.

Oh, by the way, the guard said the Nazi Mosaic is genuine from WW2. Of course, he's a guard and not an art expert, historian or anything, so take it for what it's worth.

Wow, thanks for the comment and for the explanation of German law. I think it's the same in most countries. Surely they'd avoid all the hassle if they just put up signs saying "tresspass at your own risk"?

Robin - thanks for the heads up on the bus situation. Good work!

Found the eagle while scouting the last building we were looking in. It was fantastic, so thanks for the tip! I reckon it to be genuine, though I'm no expert either. I simply looking at the state and craftsmanship that went in building that building. Because it was one of the best build I guess. Checked out the gym, which was obviously built by Russians; Russian boards were used to make the walls :O But that part of the building was falling apart much more rapidly than other (German built) buildings.

We also saw the security car near the fence where we parked our car, but didn't see him anywhere on the terrain. Maybe because it's a lot of ground to cover. Did saw another photographer who spotted us and ducked behind a tree :)

Alistair, thanks for the comment. I'm very sorry but I removed it as I feel it's against the point of urban exploration to provide detailed instructions on EXACTLY where the eagle is located. Surely the whole point of urban exploration is the "exploration", the feeling you don't know what's around the corner, what you will find around the next wall you look, at the bottom of the next hole you look in?
It's not hard to find the eagle if you just look for the damn thing, and looking for it is most of the fun. If you just want to see it and nothing else, then there's a picture of it published on the blog for those who are so inclined.
Yes, I know there's a hypocrisy of providing detailed instructions on how to get to these places, but I think once you find the places it's up to you to explore.
Again, I apologise for removing the comment - I've never done that before - but I think in the interest of exploration it's better to leave certain things unsaid.

You're right about the mozzies: "bring long pant or mosquito repellent!! im from africa and I have never experienced such a feeding frenzy! i look like i have been shot with a shotgun."

ich war heute in krampnitz ... der zutritt ist inzwischen sehr leicht, da ein loch in der mauer ist und der draht runtergetreten. die gebäude sind allerdings vielfach verrammelt und man sollte sehr sportlich sein, um mit hilfsmitteln einstieg in die hochliegenden fenster zu finden ;) ... leider sieht man aber auch den vandalismus der letzten jahre :(

Hi guys, very thanks for this site, that's fuckin unbelievable what u can find in berlin neighbourhood.
we'll be in berlin from 18 to 25 of july and we are looking for someone who would like to come with us.
if interested email us at shari_vari@hotmail.it

kingrat & Lillimouse July 19, 2011 at 9:31 AM

This is our 3rd trip to Berlin thanks to you !! It's costing me a fortune in Diesel :) Just wanted to say thanks. You've saved us from return trips to Severalls. Krampnitz really is the gift that keeps on giving everytime we come we discover more. We spent 8 hours there yesterday and were still coming accross stuff as we were leaving ! The cinema/gym/canteen building was mental ! How noisy would it have been in there at chow time. Always feel very comfortable wandering round the buildings although one of the 'dorms' left us with a very uneasy feeling to the point we got out quick for no apparent reason.
Thanks again and we feel as if we owe you a beer or 10. Today is Doeberitz Day

Kingrat and Lillimouse

This nazi base is going down. On August We will tare this place apart and destroy the nazi eagle. Nothing will survive. Time is ticking...

Thanks again for all the comments, musings, advice and attempts to be funny (I hope). I presume senseless vandals would not have the wherewithal to signal their intentions in advance, so I sincerely hope the last comment was a misguided attempt at humour.
Kingrat and Lillimouse - you're very welcome. Maybe some day we'll have a beer or ten.
Shari - I wasn't in Berlin for much of July, but hope you had a good time.
Tuennelef - Ja, das Vandalismus ist Scheisse, aber was kann man tun? Leider gibt's Idioten überall. Wichtig ist, diesen Orten zu genießen so lang man kann.

This is an excellent site with the WW2 and Soviet artwork that still remains.

Status: Many trees are marked with red paint and others with numbers. I wonder if they're planning to cut them down soon? There were clear signs of the guard's vehicle but I was there for 4 hours on a Sunday and I didn't hear or see him. There was also a fresh Securitas barcode on the back of the Offizier Kasino. In the gym I saw tracks of a moped and in a house I saw bicycle-tracks on the 1st floor. Some of these explorers are bold! If you prefer to go incognito and if you go while the trees have leaves you can stay out of the guard's sight except when crossing the roads as the place is quite overgrown. You should be able to hear him coming in his car. Although, when I was there it was one of those days where you can hear cars a mile away so it was difficult to say if it was the guard. I also heard sirens 3 times and dogs on occasion. But I don't think it was related to the site and I believe the guard mostly just drives slowly around the site.
I can understand they guard it well, though, as a garage had had a couple of manmade fires in it and many buildings are in very poor condition and dangerous to enter, there are open manholes in the undergrowth that can be hard to see, etc.

The ticks and mosquitoes are huge and hungry as our dear blogger has noted. There are many animal paths and I wonder if there are wild boar as it looks like they have been digging in the soil many places.

A theory as to why the Russians have not destroyed the nazi mosaic could be that it has either been concealed - which they did with much nazi artwork in the buildings they took - or perhaps they considered it a trophy to show guests. To this day it remains an impressive sight.

Thanks for the update and the advice. Those bicycle tracks might have been my own. It IS a big site! I heard about the red paint and that it's on the buildings too. They are literally numbered and their days are too. I assume they want to knock down the site much like they're doing with Vogelsang. I feel another visit coming on...

Hey, went in the weekend and it was great, cold but great and very much not teared down. Opposite actually with one building looking more like it was being fixed. Found the eagle, in the last building we looked in and it was well worth the search. My favourite was the theatre though. With the coloured glass and holes where the projectors sat. Amazing!
Thanks for posting information like this, its making my weekends most exciting :)

You know, I haven't been in the theatre - I don't think I've been anyway - I really have to get out there again soon, but there are so many places and so little time!

Hi Berliner!!!
I pay another visit and finally i found what i was looking for...i knew it had to be in the only building i did not have time to search in my last two visits...thus, i must come back there with my super 8 and when days are a bit brighter.
Regarding security, Yes they are around. i saw them today in the left site outside of the compound(were there is a man selling apples and honey and yummy stuff). but my guess is that they are not working there full time and they do not care much about the unexpected visitors.

Having never done any urban exploration I was a bit concerned about going in but I managed to pluck up the courage and visit during my short trip to Berlin. Managed to meet another explorer going in so that helped with the nerves. He'd been there before but still not found the eagle or the theatre. Had a very successful day and found them both + the 'Inglourious Basterds' room. I personally don't think the Eagle and Swastika are totally authentic. There are four painted over swastikas - one in each corner. Why would the russians do this and leave the central mosaic? There were also signs of recent filming and more worrying recent vandalism. If you'd like to see my pics they are here

http://www.flickr.com/photos/16531669@N07/sets/72157628502435147/

Glad you finally found it Taran - best it was worth the wait!

Anon - who knows what those crazy Russians were thinking. Maybe they went off to get more paint and then forgot what they were doing.

That vandalism is a problem though. I don't really know what anyone can do about it. I suppose we could ask the Russians to come back...

Hey IrishBerliner!

Your blog is amazing. Me and my girlfriend are new to this but so excited. After visiting the Tempelhof airport when it was just closed down and visiting Teufelsberg three times last year we went to Krampnitz to test our luck there. First we ended up at the wrong site, an elderly-home just two miles down the road, where some interesting stuff was lying around (parts of old military trucks). We soon enough found out that we were not at the site you mentioned as Krampnitz Kaserne, so we tested our luck and followed the road further away from Berlin. We soon enough found that Krampnitz is hard to miss.

We only had two hours of daylight left so we gathered our confidence and snuck over a fence next to the main road. There are people living at the houses down the road so it is hard to sneak around them, but we managed to get in just behind the tower in the southwest corner of the site. We walked around the plattbau blocks and checked the big yellow two-family villa's. We didn't have enough time to get to the officer's mess or anything else but the housing area, but we sure want to go back. We didn't encounter any guards, but the tire tracks were fresh and we heard a dog barking in the distance (turned out to be living at one of the houses at the street).

We saw a lot of resemblance when we passed the Olympic village the day after. The same sovjet housing flats were build there. Would you recommend visiting that too? Oh and we tried to get into the Spreepark four days ago, but some guy with a dog chased us away in angry German (luckily we understood what he was saying and could save us some police-crap). I hope we can still visit that some other time!

Anyway, thanks for your blogs! Looking forward to see some updates. :)

Had a great day out there today, but unfortunately only got into a few of the larger buildings (theater/officer's mess and a couple of others) before being spotted by the guard. Thankfully it seemed like his job was simply to point tourists back to the hole in the fence from whence they came rather than try to 'scare' them off with fists and batons. I'd love to go back some time for further exploration.

At least you got to see something before being caught! Good to know the guard isn't a nutcase. Next time you're out, you'll know what to look out for. Sneaky does it!

Freeekie, the Olympic village is definitely worth a visit, although I see they're trying to restore it and charge people/take the fun out of it. Nowhere's safe.

Oh man, the link you give for the map is way wrong. I was stupid enough to not double check - and it added 10km onto my journey overall (by bike). Guess I got some extra exercise tho ;)

I checked the link again and it checks out. Where'd you end up?! At least you picked a good day for it, albeit cold. Hope you were wrapped up.

OK, now it works. You sure you didn't change it? ;) Before it went to the address that's still showing - "PP Pension Potsdam, Tieckstraße 4, 14469 Potsdam, Germany" - not sure what that's about but it's quite far from the actual site of course. Yeah, I chose the day carefully, gotta make the most of these rare sunny days. Couldn't find the eagle sadly and also missed the casino, but like you said it's so bit it requires multiple visits. Will head back soon...thanks again for the posts, keep 'em coming!

Hello there~

Went recently to Krampnitz twice and had a nice exploration. Though I'd like to point a few things out. First of all, our worst idea was trying to carry on with the bikes. We got out at Potsdam Hbf station and couldn't get on the bus with our bicycles. The way towards Krampnitz is quite long and very tiring, so by the time we got there, we were already too tired and with legs on pain. Also, reaching the bus station Krampnitzsee by bike we got into the place that you show in the pictures, the white houses and the red star, but couldn't get in from there. The advice is: DON'T GO BY RIDING. Get the bus that's really easier and by the 639 bus you get into the right Krampnitzsee bus station, having a big hole in the wall making it really easy to get in (the bike can't get through)and close enough to the "Inglorious bastard" building.

Also, found the "mess/casino" but couldn't find the eagle and the theater. We have a good guess of in which building they are, but they were total and completely locked, with wooden walls covering the doors, the windows and the holes in the ground possibly leading to the bunkers. There's also a lot of vandalism, broken glasses and creepy stuff (like a swastika carved on the wall with a stake in the middle and something really gross and red that we don't want to know what it is), so gotta be a bit careful about the people showing up in there. Always go with lots of sunlight and a nice group of people.

It's a great place,we wish we could go back there again =) Thank you for sharing

Pablo - I'm very sure I didn't change it! Maybe it was the Russians/Nazis trying to throw you off the scent...

Mittsu - thanks to the hilarious image of a group of you trying to get into a bus with all your bikes! Personally I'd recommend making a day of it and cycling from Potsdam Bahnhof but of course the bus is another option - without the bikes. ;-)

These posts you make are wonderful. I plan an adventure soon with some friends, but I'm wondering (maybe you already have, but I skimmed the comments... sorry) if you could give me a better idea of how to find the building with the eagle in it. It's unbelievable it still exists. I must see with my own eyes!!!

D.

I was there yesterday and it was great thanks. The rhino head is not in very good shape any more vandals! The bus comes at 13 and 45 past on every hour and on sundays every hour at 13 past 638 and 639.

Was there today, mosquitos are still a nuisance! Definitely bring spray or a hoodie, couldn't find the Eagle but wandered around the housing complex/theatre/vehicle storage place. Entered near Kremnitzsee, was easy enough.Seems that the latter may have been used for a film, recently constructed structures inside of the garage had comments written on drawers e.g. torture room/stunts etc.

I'll upload a picture so you guys can decide for yourself.

Word of warning though, we were about 20 seconds from being caught by the guard, we dropped our guard enough to walk around by the roads away from the midges, luckily for us he didn't check his mirrors!

So there is still someone there, but, as others have commented definitely big enough to escape capture without too much hassle though.

Did anyone else find the weed plant on the roof? It's got about 3/4 weeks left until it'll be ready i think. I won't say where so it can add to the fun alongside the eagle haha!

http://img845.imageshack.us/img845/4299/hmmmpl.jpg

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/13/film1bt.jpg/

Thank you Irish berliner for your tips and your discoveries.
We went today to Krampnitz, got wet feet, saw the guard driving his car but did not get spotted, visited around 20 different buildings, found the rhino, the factory, the gym, some bullets, etc, but not the eagle :(.
Anyway, it was a great trip!
We're looking forward to the next sunny day so that we can tick another site on our list.
Thanks again!
Vozduh

Hi guys, very thanks for this site.
i live in berlin and i'm looking for someone who would like to come with me. first time.
if interested email at gusik24@gmail.com

I went back there for the second time a few weeks ago (first visit was early 2011). Still great, but I have to say I could have cried upon discovering that some pizduk (this is an unfriendly Russian word) has spray-painted the interior walls of the Casino. You could see the same idiot's 'tag' in various other buildings of lesser consequence as well.

Otherwise the place seemed the same. No sign of a guard, but I generally kept well away from the main drag.

I disagree with those who take issue with biking there. If you take a ferry to Katow then bike towards Potsdam it's a really pleasant trip and a basic level of fitness should be enough. We actually went for a stroll in Sans Souci after the Kaserne.

Btw I love this site.

Unfortunately there are pizduks everywhere. It's the main reason I consider not publicizing locations and so on but I figure they'll find and destroy these places anyway. And if they don't, the developers or the local authorities will. They're pizduks too.

I ran across this via a pin on Pinterest and was simply amazed. How awesome! I run a site called Abandoned Gulf Coast in the USA and have nothing that measures up to this. What a great job and I enjoyed all of the history behind it.

Hi everybody,
Nice article about abandoned Krampnitz. I lived there in 1975-1978 when i was a child (9-12 years old). You know it's most sweety childhood age, so i have very fond memories with Krampnitz. And now it looks so sadly.

If you're interesting a history of Krampnitz you can see many photos in the albums of Krampnitz group of our social network odnoklassniki.ru (direct link: http://www.odnoklassniki.ru/krampnits/albums ). There are photos of people who lived or be on duty in Krampnitz, photos of alive Krampnitz and even photos of pre-WW2 Krampnitz.

Hey Alexander, thanks for your comment!
I'd love to see those pictures and read more but unfortunately it seems you need to be a member to be able to log in to see them. My Russian isn't as good as it should be! ;-)
Is there anywhere else people can check out the photos?
Thanks again,
IB

Ops, i forgot about registration... sorry

The easiest way is try yandex search engine - use this url: http://yandex.ru/yandsearch?text=%D0%BA%D1%80%D0%B0%D0%BC%D0%BF%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%86&lr=191 (search text is Крампниц meaning Krampnitz in russian). There also are some video shooted by ex-soldiers when them vizited Krampnitz.

About odnoklassniki - i can make some fake account for you can get access to photos.

Made it to Kampnitzsee yesterday, almost to easy to get inside. Went straight for the Eagle and found very easy. Is it real and autentic?
regards Tina

Tina,
You don't have to give away the exact location (because i know Irish Berliner won't like that too much!) but could you just confirm if its in the building with all the windows intact?! Cheers, Perinne

I was just wondering.. from all your experience do security guards tend to work 24/7 or just 9-5 on weekdays?

Hi Saz. 24/7 security is very rare because it's quite costly. So unless there's gold or something valuable to protect they generally don't bother!

Alexander, I don't know how I missed your reply, but I've just seen it now. Thanks! I'll check out that link. And if you can create an account for odnoklassniki that would be great too!
Many thanks,
IB

Was there during the week, some vans are parked during the day infront of the gates so just stay off the main road to avoid being seen I'd say. Managed to get in to all the buldings but not to the ground floor of the Officer's Mess unfortunately which is pretty well boarded up.

The mosquitos are very much alive and well.

I was here with my boyfriend last week. It has unfortunately changed quite a bit for the worse in the years since these pictures were taken, though it's still definitely worth seeing. Unfortunately security spotted us maybe two hours into our visit and sternly told us to leave after demanding to take down our information from our Ausweis. Can they do that? It scared the boyfriend away from this place, but I plan to return this weekend because I still have a date with the eagle. After all, it may not have much more time before the stupid vandals destroy it too.

I'm not sure they can do that. The might be within their rights to keep you there until the police arrive, but that's about it. Only the police can demand shit like that. It depends how far you want to push the security guards though... I guess if you're nice to them and show you know your rights, they may just leave you off.

I have seen a lot of abandoned places, but Krampnitzsee is one of the most interesting places. Regards from Tina, Denmark.

was there before a week,the swastikas on eagle not exist anymore,probably the workers slipped them,with gypsum.

First of all, thanks for a great website!

I went there on Friday 19 June. The hole in the fence by the bus stop is still there and there was no security around. The "fancy" building has been closed up though, there is a padlock on the main door and wooden panels on the windows. One window was broken, it might be possible to climb through it if you are a small person but we didn't try it. The only window we could kind of see through was one of the windows in the casino room (where the window was broken). Despite being there in the middle of the day in strong sunlight, the place was eerie. Will definitely go back another time, we only had about an hour or two there and that was definitely too short.

Thanks for the update! Yep, an hour or two isn't enough. I don't think even a day is enough. I'll have to go back too.

Visited this about two weeks ago and man, it was great.
Just as a previous commenter mentioned, the main "fancy building" is well boarded up but it was possible to climb in thru two broken windows. Amazing place. But very, very vandalized.

Grafitti tags everywhere. But its big, god how big it is! If you continue to walk among the wall you will reach apartment complexes built by the soviets, they look almost exactly like the aparments in Pripyat. Very cool.

Thanks for this great blog, it inspired me to travel to Germany and explore. :)

Thanks for the very kind words Per! A shame to hear it's so vandalized. People can be idiots.

Happened to pass by there last weekend, so couldn't resist dropping in again to see how things are progressing (if that's the right word).

First thing I noticed was a mountain of razor wire blocking the hole I had always used in the past, so that wasn't very friendly. There are workarounds, but it suggested that a bit more effort is being made to keep people out.

Inside, the casino is boarded up indeed (although again there are workarounds). Sadly, as mentioned above, the vandalism inside has only increased, which is a dagger in the heart of anyone who saw it in its pomp.

Perhaps the biggest surprise: the swastikas on the eagle have been plastered over with great precision. The rest of the eagle remains in view, just the symbols in the corners and centre are gone (wie vom lustigen Gesetzgeber bestimmt). This is a very professional job, and may or may not answer the ongoing speculation about whether it is the real thing.

Otherwise it's the same as it ever was really. Still worth visiting if in the neighbourhood - the friend I was with had never been there and she loved it - but I'll never understand why some see the need to spray their paint around like so many territorial dogs.

Went there for the second time today, the hole in the fence by the bus stop is still there. The fancy building is locked up but there were lots of broken windows so easy to climb in. The building where the eagle is was slightly harder to get into but still ok. No security. The great stuff is still there but very, very vandalised.

Andrea

Krampnitz is going through its last days as a viable place to be visited/explored. There are plans to develop the site and it looks like they're going to go through soon.

because of this post, i ended up spending two days there and there is no more eagle.

http://ftrc.me/17Of3R4

above you can see how it looks right now.
=[

been there on 3.10.2013.

the casino is sealed, huge massive bricks and beton blocks blocking everything.
in the remaining houses the same process is underway, they are blocking the sections of the floors inside the houses.
lots of building stuff lying around (bricks etc.) suggesting some very recent developments.

so i'd say - if you want to go, go now.
but on the week-end, as there might be some workers around during the week.

Thanks for the update. Seems Krampnitz's days are indeed numbered. I still plan on getting out there soon - definitely before it's too late.

i just got back from krampnitz and everything is bicked and sealed up. including the theater/cinema
http://www.flickr.com/photos/gastaum/sets/72157637523724234/

Why would they even bother? It's all going to be developed anyway...

You still managed to get some really great pictures though! Kudos!

It seems like the fairytale of Krampnitz is about to end forever. According to german newspapers the Krampnitz areas has been sold off and will be re developed into housing for 3200 people. It began in october last year (just months after my visit, what luck i had) and will last until 2023.

Very very sad but maybe its the right thing to do considering how trashed the area has become. But still, sad.

Any news? Plan to go there and heilstätten in a few days.

According to this report:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJ7Md8DnWzg

Work will soon begin to transform Krampnitz. For thoose of you that know of the Hitler-project "Prora", that is also beeing turned into apartments. Nothing is safe anymore..

Yeah, it's a shame. Telling that there was very little mention of the site's history.
I suppose apartments are better than a golf course but still, the last thing Berlin needs right now are more fucking "luxus" homes. It's all they're building nowadays. A concrete gold rush.
Thanks for posting the clip.

I have visited the place today with 2 of my friends. Though it wasn't really a problem to find a spot in the fence where we could enter, after about 5 minutes we ran into a security guy driving a white car. he told us to leave the area, that's it. i guess rebuilding the area will soon start there because we saw several cars and trucks drive in and out of the place. i'd say it's no longer safe to go there because there's no real chance to take pictures when there are securities driving up an down the roads and probably those trucks already were construction workes. greetings

I went there this weekend. We were walking around for about 2-3 hours before the security found us. There was a lot of them outthere, but one of them told us to come back in two weeks. So it is possible to be there for some time. But avoid the big roads and look out for cars - we saw one an ran into a house. It is easy to hide from them:)

It's better to wait until end of June/early July, when shooting of "The Hunger Games" (german "Tribute von Panem") is over there at Krampnitz. At the moment, you'll have to avoid *two* security services: The usual one and those of the film crew, who are very much interested in keeping unwanted witnesses of coulisses, stars and shooting off. The same applies to Rüdersdorf chemical factory "Rükana"! Who hasen't been to Krampnitz for a longer time: Trees have been cut down in large extent, so it became more difficult to hide in the bushes, when security car comes...

Today we went to Krampnitz for the third time in 4 years, just had to see it one more time before it's end. We saw that the front gate (Potsdammer Chaussee) was open, maybe because of security? We drove to Gellerstrasse, parked the car en went under the fence. The buildings on that side were not boarded up and everything was accessible. We went on visiting the west side of Krampnitz and no security to be seen. That side is very badly accessible by car so maybe that's te reason the security was absent (they hate walking ;-) Very nice to see the old garages on big open spaces with nice views.
Thank you for this wonderfull website. We read it a lot before coming to Berlin. I'll soon be posting about our visits to de Iraqi Ambassy, Gutterbahnhof Pankow, Siemensbahn, the Bowling and our visit to Lenin in Waldstadt. Keep up to good work!!

We were there 2 weeks ago and walked into the movie security guys indeed. They put us outside (by 4x4, no walking needed) and that was it. They wanted to see our pictures, just to make sure we didn't take pictures of the film set.

Can anybody confirm and/or deny that the most interesting buildings (casino etc) are inaccessible now? We want to go back in august (we only saw regular barracks last time), but no point in that if everything is closed.

Update from ~May 2014:
The place is huge and it is tricky to go around and find the interesting places. There are actually only a few interesting buildings/places, but you can spend a lot of time going around in the whole site, including to check out paintings somewhere on the right side of the site, close to the site wall.
Otherwise the building with the eagle is still there (amazing!).
The building with the casino is completely sealed up and damn hard to enter into. The only way involved escalating, getting on a roof and entering - but perhaps it is already too late for this way.
There is definitely some security on the site. A car goes around the site; the man in the car seems also to walk a bit around. Avoid large roads and hide in bushes.

I went there just yesterday and was unable to find the eagle :(
We did enjoy exploring some of the buildings and saw a lot of cool old ballrooms and other such things but we were very disappointed to not find the eagle. Which building was it in??

Hello, I went there today. It is difficult to get because almost all the exits are blocked. To the right of the building you have to climb on the roof of the entrance and then drag the window on the first floor. Or there is an open above stairs leading to the basement window.
There are currently no security.

To the person who left all the coordinates, I deleted your comments.
I'm sorry, but people already have the address. You've got to leave the some exploring to do! Please see my response to Alistair Vlok's comment above.
I also deleted your comment in Russian (at least I presume it was yours) giving the location of the gas station.
Appreciate your willingness to help, really, but to be brutally honest, half the fun of finding these places is looking for them in the first place.

So, please remove link to my Vogelsang map also as that might to be too much of information for your taste.

Maps are fine, even useful. They're not foolproof - you can still get lost with a map and there's still an element of exploration involved.
But coordinates pinpoint a location, removing the element of stumbling across something else when you're looking for your primary goal. Most of the stuff I've found has been in the process of looking for something else. I hope you understand.
I won't remove your very useful Vogelsang map unless you're still adamant you want it removed...

entered the area today from the most southern part of ketziner str. where the hole in the wall is right in front of the big concrete buildings. i managed to discover nearly every southern and western part of the area. and saw the kia suv of the guard parking at the outta western part where the fields begin. i think he saw me but i gave a sh*t and made my way to the more eastern part, because i had the same feeling as you had. the crave to find something real cool and surprising. as i made it to the big wall where i guess the so called bunker is behind i heard the security car and hid into bushes. he didnt see me, but at this point i got a little bit scared, as i didnt really recognized the car as "the" sec car at the first time i saw it on the western side. i followed the car to avoid getting caught and left the area through the hole i came from. sad that i didnt experienced the really cool things you guys talk about here. but i will come back soon in the next days certainly. maybe its also interesting for you that i saw a blue t4 parking in the same western area as the beige-metallic kia suv did but more central at one end of the main roads. when i left i also recognized two vans parking in front of the gellertstr. entry which were obviously from a service who were adviced to spot left and hidden ammo. there is definetely work in action atm so maybe better visit on sunday. maybe we will meet their next sunday ;P

I went today (sunday) all of the juicy spots were accessible without force. there WAS security patrouling the area by car, but they were not too hard to avoid. we also heard voices and noises sometimes inside the buildings, but maybe those were other explorers.

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