Skip to main content

A closer look at Berlin's sights

1 of 6

Checkpoint Charlie at the Mauer Museum remains the largest Wall-related tourist draw.

2 of 6

But the new Berliner Wall Memorial with its renovated length of Wall, is much more evocative.

3 of 6

What some might consider the face of the Cold War, Brandenburg Gate was constructed in the 18th century based on the gateway to the Acropolis. It is the only of the city’s 18 gates to survive both wars. Many famed American presidents – John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and, most recently, Barack Obama – and, likewise, German chancellors have given prominent speeches in this plaza.

4 of 6

One block from the Brandenburg Gate, 2,711 geometric slabs hover ominously in an homage to those who died in the Holocaust. Designed by architect Peter Eisenman, the five-acre Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe forms a forest of pillars that create an optical illusion: They appear to protrude from the earth just high enough to serve as benches, but actually range from eight inches to nearly 16 feet tall, fully engulfing visitors as they delve into the concrete maze.

Story continues below advertisement

5 of 6

The Victory Column, or Siegessäule, was erected in the 19th century to commemorate the military successes of Prussia during the Wars of Unification. In 1938, the Nazis commissioned Adolf Hitler’s favourite architect, Albert Speer, to move the column to its current location in the former Königsplatz (now Platz der Republik) as a focal point for mounting conflict.

Sean Gallup/Getty

6 of 6

Holocaust Memorial: The four-year-old Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe forms an abstract - and slightly haunting - undulating wave pattern out of 2,711 slabs of concrete.

Kristin Luna/The Globe and Mail

Report an error