The area covered in this post is located between Saint Michael’s Church and Oranienplatz, on the border between Kreuzberg and Berlin Mitte.
It spans over the area of a former water canal, Luisenstadt Canal, from which it takes its name, as well as its prolonged shape.
Luisenstadt Canal was originally built in 1850’s to provide water connection between the Spree River to the north and a large Landwehr Canal to the south. It, as well as the surrounding neighborhood, Luisenstadt, was named after Queen Luise, the wife of Kaiser Friedrich Wilhelm III.
The Canal however never achieved popularity nor practical usability and in 1926 it was filled up and the gardens were created in its place, with ground level remaining approximately at the original water level. Only the Engelbacken, or Angel’s Pool, was left in front of the Saint Michael’s Church as a recreational feature for the locals, where 16 fountains were added.
The Canal Garden spans from Engelbacken further south, with the original bridges, once over water, still serving to cross above the below-city-level park.
Especially in spring and summer, the area blossoms with various kinds of trees and flowers.
The park was badly damaged during World War II and was not properly restored until the 1990’s due to it’s unfortunate location right at the border between East and West Berlin, where from 1961 stood the Berlin Wall
In the middle of the Canal Park stays an eastern-style fountain called the Hindu Springs (Indische Brunnen).
The fountain-sculpture arose as a compromise between the architect of the park – Erwin Barth, who wanted to rebuild the Luisenstadt Canal area into an oriental garden, as it was fashionable at the time, and the parishioners of the nearby catholic Saint Michael’s Church, who considered the oriental fashion blasphemous. After the negotiations, Barth agreed to forgo the original idea and build a swimming pool, a playground and a small Hindu garden, the centerpiece of which was the fountain.