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Discover the fascinating and sometimes turbulent Berlin history

History of Berlin

Discover the fascinating and sometimes turbulent Berlin history

Berlin History

The history of Berlin is a major factor in attracting thousands of visitors each year. Stand on the spot of Checkpoint Charlie, walk along the remnants of the Berlin Wall; Berlin’s history can be found all over the city. From the times of the Prussian Empire to the reign of the Third Reich and the Cold War, The history of Berlin reveals some of humanity’s darkest moments, however visiting modern Berlin will demonstrate that this is now a unified city of hope and possibility.

The Berlin Wall

The Berlin Wall separated East and West Germany for more than a quarter of a century. The fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 represented a turning point in the history of Berlin; the re-unification of Germany.

Very little remains of the Berlin Wall, the landmark that defined one of the most painful periods in the history of Berlin has been chipped away by residents and authorities keen to rid the city of this memory. Small parts that do remain intact can be found near Potsdamer Platz and in the district of Friedrichshain near the former location of Checkpoint Charlie. There are however a range of cobblestones throughout the city which mark the location of the wall. Many visitors to Berlin follow the route of the wall by taking one of a range of Berlin Wall tours which are on offer.

November 2009 will see the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. A range of events are expected across the city which will pay homage to the history of Berlin while, at the same time, looking to the future.

The Reichstag

The Reichstag is one of the most striking buildings in Berlin, it is also one of the most interesting. Built in the late 19th century the Reichstag was the meeting place for the Parliament of the first German Empire. Throughout the history of Berlin the Reichstag has always been a focal point for the city. Damaged by fire during Nazi reign and then by bombings, then later used as a place for many demonstrations during the cold war.

Possibly the most important event to take place at the Reichstag was the ceremony to mark the turning point in the history of Berlin –the re-unification of Germany. Following this the Reichstag was restored to represent its former glory with a modern twist, most notably the large glass dome which provides panoramic views of Berlin.

The Reichstag is located near to the Brandenburg Gate and the line which divided East and West Germany. A very popular Berlin tourist attraction, queues to visit the Reichstag can be very long. To make the most of your visit to this fascinating Berlin Landmark book yourself onto one of a range of Reichstag tours which are offered.

Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie was the name given to the crossing point between East and West Germany during the period in Berlin history which saw a divided Germany and the Berlin Wall. Checkpoint Charlie allowed foreign visitors and the allied forces to pass from one side of Berlin to the other. This was not the only crossing point, however has come to be the most famous.

After the fall of the Berlin Wall the guardhouse of Checkpoint Charlie was torn down. Nothing has been built on the site but a range of placards do testify to the past, both appeasing those visitors who come to discover the fascinating Berlin history and paying quiet remembrance to the past. Checkpoint Charlie is located in the Friedrichshain region of Berlin.

The Brandenburg Gate

Probably Berlin’s most iconic monument, the Brandenburg Gate has been a backdrop during some of the most turbulent periods of Berlin history. Having suffered minor damage during World War II the governments of East and West Germany worked together on restoration work and thus the Brandenburg Gate has come to symbolise peace and a unified Germany.

The Brandenburg Gate is located at the cross roads of Unter den Linden and Ebertstraße. The iconic symbol of Berlin history is beautifully illuminated at night and as the Brandenburg Gate is located close the to the much of Berlin nightlife making an-early evening visit is a must-do in Berlin.

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