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Igor
Rio Grande, Rio Grande do Sul

Igor from Rio Grande, Rio Grande do Sul asked

5 places to go to really know German history?

Hi! 

I'll be a solo 23yo traveler to Berlin this october and plan to stay a year, working in a startup, learning german and hopefully traveling to other cities once in a while.

Before that, I intend to spend a week or two getting to know the culture that I'll insert myself into.

My budget is like half-$. :)

Berlin

3 Answers
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answered by
Janelle from Charleston

In Berlin, the DDR Museum Berlin.  It's touristy, yes, but if you get past all the kitsch it's a fascinating insight into what life in the former East Germany was like.  I remember getting a kick out of it when I was a kid.  Berlin also has a compelling Holocaust Memorial.

No trip to Germany would be complete without visiting a Holocaust/concentration camp memorial.  Dachau (in Munich) is by far the best presented and most compelling, but it might be a bit too far out of your way.  Buchenwald Memorial is only a few hours outside Berlin and makes a compelling and educational experience.  Dresden is another former GDR city with an interesting and well-restored historical centre (restored after the Allies bombed the crap out of it).  It can be reached by frequent trains from Berlin.


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Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. DDR Museum Berlin (restaurant)
  2. Holocaust Memorial (attraction)
  3. Buchenwald Memorial (attraction)
  4. Dresden (attraction)
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answered by
Lorraine

I'd suggest a free walking tour-alternative-berlin-tours.com do an alternative tour (graffiti, bars, places off the usual tourist beat) or www.newberlintours.com takes you to historical places- free but a contribution to guide. Sachsenhausen concentration camp-get train RE5 from Berlin Staim Berlin Hauptbahnhof GmbH to Oranienburger Straße (about 25 mins) can get bus 804 from station or 20 mins walk. Free entry but a charge for tours. A day trip to Potsdam- so much to see-summer residences of Prussian kings, but also a lot of WW2 history. All major Berlin stations go to Potsdam-about 25 mins. Get a day travel pass and that will cover public transport in Potsdam if you want to self guide. freetoursbyfoot.com offers a free guided walk. You can do hop on/hop off bus tours from station if you have limited time. Quality varies so ask a few of them their rates and where they go before you use them. Wander the Freiderichstrasse, go to Museum Island, the Holocaust Memorial, Brandenburg Gate, Tiergarten. You won't run out of things to see-the street market along the river close to Museum Island is interesting for all the old war bits and pieces on sale.


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Mentioned in this answer:

map
VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Sachsenhausen (attraction)
  2. Staim Berlin Hauptbahnhof GmbH (attraction)
  3. Oranienburger Straße (attraction)
  4. Potsdam (city)
  5. Museum Island (attraction)
  6. Brandenburg Gate (attraction)
  7. Tiergarten (attraction)
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answered first by
Maria from Dublin

Hi Igor,

I LOVE Berlin, it's probably the only city in Europe where you feel like you're living the history! I would suggest a visit to the Holocaust Memorial and the museum underneath. It is so emotionally moving. There are old videos of jewish families who lived in Berlin. I'm not Jewish but I spent half a day in the museum and shed a few tears there!Visit Checkpoint Charlie Brandenburg Gate  Deutsches Historisches MuseumSoviet War Memorial Treptow Reichstagsgebäude and Charlottenburg palace (visit the gardens too ) Most of Germany was bombed during the war and has since been rebuilt but there are a few small areas like Nicholas quarter that are old Berlin. Be sure to visit the Tiergarten and read a little before you go, you'll be glad you did. 


Comments (1)

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Igor
Thanks, Maria, I'll definitely check these places!
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

map
VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Holocaust Memorial (attraction)
  2. Checkpoint Charlie (attraction)
  3. Brandenburg Gate (attraction)
  4. Deutsches Historisches Museum (attraction)
  5. Soviet War Memorial Treptow (attraction)
  6. Reichstagsgebäude (attraction)
  7. Charlottenburg (attraction)
  8. Tiergarten (attraction)
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likes (1) thanks


   
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