The Berlin Wall and a love story

On 13 August 1961, the division of the post-war Berlin takes a new dimension. Overnight barbed wire entanglements are installed and the border with West Berlin is closed. East Germany’s authorities in East Germany would call this measure the “Anti-Fascist Protective Wall”, for the West Berlin city government the Berlin Wall would become the “Wall of Shame”. But this conspicuous fortification would not prevent Wolfgang Müller, a citizen of East Berlin, to join the love of his life on the other side. Continue reading The Berlin Wall and a love story

 

Walking through the Jewish Berlin…

A 14-year-old boy with a slightly bowed back had been walking to Berlin for five days. On arrival at the city gate Hallesches Tor guards didn’t let him through. In the year 1743 Jews could pass Berlin border only through the gate Rosenthaler Thor – to keep a register. Young Moses Mendelssohn didn’t know it . He had to run from gate to gate along the city wall all day… Continue reading Walking through the Jewish Berlin…

 

Guided tour through the origins of Red Berlin

1848 marks a turbulent year for Europe. A spectre is haunting Europe – the spectre of communism, as Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels thoughtfully warn. It would take one century and one year for a version of communism to get materialized on the German soil. The German Democratic Republic would be proclaimed only in 1949 under the motto “Workers of the world, unite!” Continue reading Guided tour through the origins of Red Berlin

 

Cold War in Berlin: the curious case of Otto John

As no other city in the world, Berlin still has many sites of the Cold War for you to discover. Some of these have become a conspicuous tourist attraction, such as the Checkpoint Charlie. Yet other sites are hidden in stories. We’ll tell you a story how Berlin’s Museum Island, today a magnificent must-see area for guided and unguided tours, became a hot spot for a mysterious escape to West-Berlin… Continue reading Cold War in Berlin: the curious case of Otto John

 

Cosmos vs. Capitalism: A story of Berlin TV Tower

Nowadays, the Berlin TV Tower, also known as the Fernsehturm or simply Tower on Alex, is one of the most recognizable symbols of the German capital, along with the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag. This is also the place where the most of Berlin city tours start. This television tower is, in fact, the tallest building in Germany today, and this is no accident … Continue reading Cosmos vs. Capitalism: A story of Berlin TV Tower

 

Guided tour through the Stalin-allee in Berlin

Every tourist knows there are plenty of castles and palaces in Germany, mostly spread somewhere in deep forests. But only Berlin can offer the city-tour through a boulevard full of palaces – the Karl-Marx-Allee. Nowadays, it is merely a GDR leftover, carefully restored and placed under protection as a historical monument. But back in 1950s it was part of a grandiose project to build an ideal socialist state on the ruins of the Third ReichContinue reading Guided tour through the Stalin-allee in Berlin

 

Berlin’s backyards and black-and-white movies

I grew up in Russia. Like all Soviet children I watched the World War II movies on TV. In Russia we call this war the „Great Patriotic War“. More than 24 Million Soviet people had been killed. The parents of my grandma had been among the victims. German officers in Nazi uniforms with horrible accent interrogating „our“ captured soldiers. That was my initial impression of the „evil Germans“ in black-and-white films from the Cold War era… Continue reading Berlin’s backyards and black-and-white movies