Berlin’s Alte Nationalgalerie is the original home of the Nationalgalerie, whose collections today are divided between five museums.
The building suffered direct hits on several occasions during the aerial bombardment of the World War II, sustaining heavy damage particularly after 1944: columns and walls remain pock marked by the heavy fighting between the advancing Russians and the rabid Nazi defenders.
During the division of Germany, the 19th-century paintings that had survived the war in Western zones of occupation were housed in the Neue Nationalgalerie, beginning in 1968, and in Schloss Charlottenburg’s Gallery of Romanticism from 1986.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, the growing collections were united in their original building, now called the Alte Nationalgalerie, on Berlin’s Museumsinsel. Without a doubt, the Museum Island in Berlin – northern tip of the Spree Island – is ideal for an autumnal stroll, and if you find yourself in the Alte Nationalgalerie, check out its small café and book shop.