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17 sensational observation towers that aren't in Paris

By: Matt Hickman on Aug. 5, 2016, 10:39 a.m.
The Fernsehturm Berlin

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

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Fernsehturm Berlin

Observation/TV tower fanciers all have their favorite German examples: the trendsetting (Fernsehturm Stuttgart, 1956), the time-telling (Dusseldorf's Rheinturm, 1981), the super-futuristic (Hamburg's Heinrich-Hertz-Turm, 1968), the closed-to-the-public (Frankfurt's Europaturm, 1979) and the historically significant (Munich's Olympiaturm, 1972). After a while, these pointy concrete monoliths all start to look the same.

The most enduring — and endearing — is Berliner Fernsehturm, a uniting symbol of a city once divided. Looming over Alexanderplatz at 1,207 feet (a new antenna installed in the 1990s added a few extra feet), this multipurpose telecommunications tower built in 1969 is the tallest structure in all of Germany. And in Berlin, a city so jam-packed with must-see sights, there's really no easier way for time-strapped visitors to claim that they truly "saw it all" than ascending to the tower's panoramic observation deck for knockout views followed by a quick currywurst lunch.

Locals and those with more time to kill can be found soaking in the sky-high atmosphere within the tower's rotating restaurant where the perfect sunset meal concludes with a generous slice of Sacher torte.