My stay in Berlin was short due to flight cancellations and delays, but the time I spent in Berlin was certainly memorable.
Here are a few of our favourite things to see and do whilst in Berlin!
Number 5: Reichstag
The beautiful Reichstag building has undergone many transformations due to both war and fire. The current building was renovated in the early 90’s and includes the iconic transparent dome. Perched on top of the Reichstag is a completely glass dome, from which you can see into parliament. I’ve heard that the transparent dome is meant to represent the strive for government to be transparent in their affairs. The dome is lined by a stairway/rampway from which you can see the surrounding city, and take some amazing photographs.
I’ve heard that it’s more difficult to get entrance to the Reichstag now, and that booking your ticket in advance might be necessary, however, when I visited I waited only a few minutes to enter. I did have to pass through airport like security, and was required to present my passport in order to enter.
Number 4: Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church
The remnants of Kaiser Wilhelm church loom over the western portion of Berlin. The original church was badly damaged in 1943, but the structure remains as a symbol of resurrection and unity. There is a new modern church built beside the old, and the contrast between the two structures is powerful. You can go inside the old church, and see the original tile work. It is interesting to see the building from the inside, and how it is completely exposed to the outside elements.
Number 3: Brandenburg Gate
You can not visit Berlin without visiting the Brandenburg gate! Within view of the Reichstag and almost straddling the now invisible line of east verse west, the gate is certainly an icon of Germany. The plaza surrounding the gate is interesting too. You can see the window where Michael Jackson infamously dangled his baby from.
Number 2: Berlin Wall Remnants and Check Point Charlie
Whilst there are certainly larger and more visually appealing sections of the Berlin Wall, I was only able to visit the section that remains in the city centre. There are a few places where you can visit bits of the Berlin Wall that remain, most covered in protest murals and artwork. There is even a section where you can peer through one wall to see the no-mans-land between the two wall segments.
I include checkpoint Charlie in this because it interesting to see, albeit a bit touristy and tacky.
Number 1: Holocaust Memorial “Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe.”
A powerful monument to the loss of Jewish life during the atrocities of World War 2. The monument speaks for itself. Wandering the ever changing alleys of the memorial is moving and eerie.
If you visit, be sure to show this monument the respect it whole heart-idly deserves.
Honourable Mention: Wandering around East Berlin and looking for amazing graffiti