Berlin is the capital city of Germany and maybe one of the best value cities in Europe. With its summer roof terraces, beach bars, winter Christmas markets, shopping, sightseeing, dynamic entertainment, museums and classic architecture, - there is always something going on in Berlin!
TOP 8 PLACES TO VISIT
Located near Brandenburger Tor the haunting memorial commemorates the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust. This hugely controversial memorial by Peter Eisenman consists of 2711 concrete slaps spread across 200 000 square feet. To give visitors a sense of disorientation and confusion the slaps was deliberately built at various heights. The audible whispers and footsteps of other walking through leave an unsettling atmosphere.
2.THE BRANDENBURG GATE
Built in 1791 by King Frederic Wilhem II the gate is the city's most defining monument. The 26 meter high sandstone monument was Berlin’s first Neoclassical structure and is notable for its four-horse chariot, its six large columns on each side, and the two buildings used by toll-collectors and guards. In 1999 German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Russia's Mikhail Gorbachev, and Poland's Lech Walesa walked through the gate to commemorate the tearing down of the Berlin Wall 20 years earlier.
3.THE BERLIN WALL MEMORIAL
In 1961 a wall between East and West Germany was built by Eastern Germany to stem the flood of refugees from the west. When the wall was torn down in 1989 the four-meter high wall extended 155 kilometers, dissected 55 streets, and possessed 293 observation towers and 57 bunkers. Today only a 1.4 kilometer stretch is preserved as part of the memorial, a reminder of the animosity divided the east from the west. Highlights include the Marienfelde Refugee Center Museum, the Monument in Memory of the Divided City and the Victims of Communist Tyranny and the Window of Remembrance. The remains of the wall is on exhibit at the Visitors Centre and at the Museum Haus am Checkpoint Charlie displays of artifacts tracing the history of human rights is on exhibit.
4.KAISER WILHELM MEMORIAL CHURCH
The original church was competed in 1895 in honor of Emperor Wilhelm I, most of the church and tower was destroyed in 1943. The remains of the destroyed church was incorporated into the new church built in 1961, resulting a major Berlin landmark that also serves as a war memorial with mosaic remains installed in the hall, architectural remnants, and photos. A figure of Christ from the old church is the centerpiece and from the Coventry Cathedral a Cross of Nails. Regular weekday services, Sunday services and Evening Music Services – all visitors are welcome!
The 368 meter TV Tower is the tallest structure in Germany and was built between 1965 and 1969. It was praised as a symbol of socialism by the East German government, but today the Tower is a unique mark of the new unified Berlin. From the observation deck 203 meters up you are offered magnificent views of the entire city and surrounding area up to 42 kilometer far.
6.EAST SIDE GALLERY
Many famous artists immortalized themselves after the fall of the wall, and the wall has become a piece of art never seen before. With over 100 painting such as the famous kiss of Erich Honecker and Leonid Brezhnev, the gallery is the world’s longest open air gallery on a still intact original section of the Berlin Wall.
The oldest German Zoo is housed in a corner of the Tiergarten Park. The zoo is home to more than 15 000 animals including giant pandas and Europe's most modern birdhouse, with more than 550 species. In 1913 a aquarium was added, with 9 000 species of fish, amphibians, creepy crawlies and other fascinating creatures.
The 32 square kilometers of forest takes it name from the Hunting Lodge built in 1542 by Elector Joachim II. The forest is filled with mixed oak, beech, pine, birch, acacia, and poplar trees providing shelter to wildlife and birds.Highlights include small and large lakes: Pechsee, Barssee, Teufelssee, Hundekehlesee, Grunewaldsee, Schlachtensee, and Krumme Lanke. The lakes offer a variety of watersports and bathing. Other features are the 80-meter-high artificial hill, the Teufelsberg, the Grunewald Tower, a 19th-century memorial to Emperor Wilhelm I; and the original Hunting Lodge. The museum housed an impressive collection of artworks from the 15th to 19th centuries.
OTHER PLACES TO SEE
The best way to get around in Berlin is by public transport – subway, underground, the S-Bahn, car, motorcycle, taxi, bus and tram.
The best time to visit Berlin is from May to September when the weather is ideal for cafe sitting, park lazing and leisurely city strolling.