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Travel

Flowers galore at the Federal Horticultural Show

More than one million tulips, daffodils and primroses were planted for the 2015 Federal Horticultural Show that opens on April 18. It is located in the Havel region, already a nature lover’s paradise.

This year's horticultural show, the BUGA 2015, is taking place in the Havel region near Berlin.

In the past, individual towns or cities staged the event but this year visitors can enjoy the floral displays and exhibitions in five different locations, including, for the first time, churches. The picturesque Havel region, with the river of the same name and numerous lakes, provides a perfect setting for the show.

Organizers say the 2015 horticultural show will include no less than 1600 events, not just on gardening topics but also art and culture.

The five venues of the Federal Horticultural Show

Copyright: Nestor Bachmann/dpa

The Peter and Paul Cathedral in Brandenburg an der Havel

The town of Brandenburg an der Havel is at the southernmost point of the event. It is home to several tributaries of the Havel, islands, locks and bridges and has a 1000 year old history. The Peter and Paul Cathedral is one of its major landmarks.

This year the town features 16 flower shows in a local church as well as themed gardens beside the river, and magnificent rose displays in the town’s park.

Further north lies the small industrial town of Premnitz. It is mainly known for energy production which is increasingly based on sustainable raw materials. Gardens with summer shrubs and opulent grasses show how energy can be generated in this way.

The town center, with its market square and town hall, will serve as the local backdrop for the flower show. Visitors can stroll through a floral maze and see the local beauty spots from a viewing platform.

Watch video 04:19

The National Garden Show 2015

The optics industry in Rathenow dates back to the 19th century. The local optics museum’s park is part of the flower show with unusual visual perceptions and a water lily display. Visitors can also look forward to a dahlia show and a rhododendron garden.

Stölln/Rhinow airfield is the only venue that isn’t right beside the river. Aviation pioneer Otto Lilienthal made his first flights from the Gollenberg, the highest hill in the region. He died in a glider crash in 1896. In tribute to Lilienthal, a former East German intercontinental passenger plane landed at the world’s oldest airfield almost 100 years later. Today it serves as a register office and exhibition venue. This year the Lady Agnes, as the aircraft is affectionately known, will be surrounded by wild roses and other flowers.

Copyright: BUGA-Zweckverband

The pittoresque city of Havelberg is a must-see in the region

The 80 kilometer horticultural show journey ends in Havelberg. This is where the Havel flows into the Elbe. To mark the flower show, the old monastery garden has been redesigned and the old cemetery reconstructed. Visitors will see floral tapestries and peony growers will present different species from throughout the ages.

Tourism in a Conservation Area

The skyliner will offer visitors a panoramic view of the surrounding area. It is said to be the world’s tallest mobile viewing platform and will move from one venue to the next during the show.

The river landscape in the Havel region is home to 1100 endangered species of animals and plants. Storks and cranes can be found here as well as beavers and otters. Sadly, due to the many boats on the river, the old water meadows are now separated from the river in many places by dams.

Copyright: BUGA-Zweckverband

Various birds like these cranes live nearby the river

A local nature protection initiative has launched a renaturing scheme. The Havel was declared a protected area in 1990. In a long term project, dikes will be removed and old woodlands replanted. The hope is to restore important functions within the eco system.

Havel region campaign

The river and its surrounding natural beauty are the top tourist magnets in the region. Water sports enthusiasts come to the area and it is also popular with cyclists. The Havel has one of the most attractive riverside cycle paths in Germany.

The Federal Horticultural Show hopes to put the Havel region in the spotlight as a major tourist attraction.

Exhibitions in five different places will remain open until the show closes on October 11. It will leave behind 10 renovated parks and the region hopes it will boost tourism for many years to come.

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