Wanders Here and There

Berlin: Crossing West to East

Berlin is one of the cities in my “Places-to-Visit” list. And this year, I am happy to tick the box. However, one day was not enough to see what the city has to offer. It will definitely be in our list of “Places to Visit Again.”

Berlin as Germany’s Seat of Government

As the country’s capital, the city is home to major government offices, economic and finance institutions, and diplomatic offices.   The moment we got out of the central station,  the panoramic view of the federal government buildings welcomed us. 

Berlin Day Tour
Berlin Central Station

In front of the Central Station is a Place for Budding Artists to Share their Talents

Berlin Day Tour
Office Building Complex of the Ministers and Members of the Parliament

As we walked farther, our eyes feast with amazing architecture of mixed modern and classic buildings. 

Berlin City Tour
Office of the German Chancellery

Berlin Day Tour
The Reichstags Buidling where the Parliament Meets

Remembering the Wall 

Across the Reichstags building is a green fence and white crosses with names, and pictures. This space is a memorial site for the  people who died because they tried to cross the wall. It was also the starting point where I felt the heavy past of the city. 

Berlin history tour
Dedicated Space for the People Who Died Trying to Cross the Wall

On the street are two lines of small rectangular cobblestones. This was the former site of the Berlin wall. As we crossed the street, I felt heavy when I looked back at the names of those who died trying to cross these same lines. 

Berlin Tour
The Two Lines of Rectangular Cobblestones are where the Former Wall was

Not far is the infamous Brandenburg Gate with over 200 years of history. This gate was a symbol of the divided East and West of the city – geographically and politically. In front of the city’s only remaining town gate is the Strasse des 17. Juni (17th of June Street) with the Victory Column at the far end. The name refers to the 17 June 1953 uprising in East Germany.  The gate and the street now serve as the country’s reunification symbol. 

Berlin Day Tour
The Brandenburg Gate

Berlin Day Tour
The 17th of June Street

A few meters away from the Brandenburg Gate is the Holocaust Memorial Site. It is dedicated for the victims of World War 2 genocide. At first glance, the rectangular concrete slabs look like park benches. But as you walk across to the other side, the slabs become taller. There is a feeling as if you are walking inside them. These slabs are arranged in grid pattern similar to those in the cemetery.  

Berlin Day tour holocaust
The Holocaust Memorial

Walking in Between the Holocaust Slabs

The Rich History of the East and Its Vibrant Present

My impression of East Berlin was far different from those I usually see in the old movies compared to  its actual  beautiful architecture. This part of the city is lined up with gorgeous facades, statues, and plazas. 

Exploring the Streets of Berlin

The Gendarmenmarkt with the Concert House in between the German and French Cathedrals

Berlin Cathedral

Inside Berlin Dome

The Former Humboldt University Library now the Faculty of Law

Underneath are Empty Shelves Enough for the 20000 Books which were Burned

The Synagogue

The Old Post Office

Ampelmann Stoplights are Uniquely Berlin

Berlin Stoplights

Inside the Patios of Hackesche Hoefe

Inside Hackesche Hoefe

A Chocolate Paradise

One of my must-try while in Berlin are the chocolate stores at the shopping district near Gendarmenmarkt Plaza. There is the first Ritter Sport flagship store where you can make your own version of their chocolate.

Chocolate History and Process at Ritter Sport

Creating our Own Ritter Sport Chocolate Bar

The Rausch Chocolate House, behind the German Tower of Gendarmenmarkt has displays of the city’s historic buildings in chocolate.

Brandenburg Gate in Chocolate

The Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church also known as the Open Tooth Cathedral

A Bus Ride to the Westside

With a couple of hours still before we head back to Hamm, my husband and I decided to explore the other side of the city. From Bebelplatz, we took the bus going to Zoo Station. Seating on the upper deck of the bus gave us a good perspective of the city’s tourists and historical spots. 

Off to the West Side by Bus

The Victory Column

The Open Tooth Cathedral

The Wasseruhr or Clock of Flowing Time at Berlin Europa-Center

As I mentioned at the beginning of this blog, one day is not enough to enjoy all things city has to offer. On the other hand, spending a day here is just as amazing. 

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