The GDR watchtower
The Berlin Wall, built around West Berlin, was a reality people had to live with from 1961 to 1989. There were lots of guard towers too, and the guards had orders to shoot to kill everybody who wanted to escape from East to West Berlin. This tower is the last of the round 'mushroom' type towers to remain standing and therefore a sad reminder of the past.
Berlin wall memorial
If you wnat to understand how and why the Wall was built, this memorial and museum is an absolute must. It consists of the Visitor/Documentation Centre and the Open-Air Exhibition and Memorial Grounds. There's also an exhibition caled Border Stations and Ghost Stations in Divided Berlin in the Nordbahnhof S-Bahn station. Interesting guided tours.
Topography of terror
+49 (0)30 2545 0950
The Topography, which used to be the SS police office, is now a documentation centre about all the horrible acts that were committed in the Third Reich. The remaining 200 metres of the Wall at the Niederkirchnerstrasse -which marked the border between East and West- have been preserved and now are part of the Topography of Terror Documentation Center. An absolute must!
+49 (0)341 3555 340
Checkpoint Charlie, the Berlin Wall crossing place that symbolises the Cold War, has degenerated into a seedy tourist trap. The 360° Asisi Panorama is a better option: you'll relive daily life in the vicinity of the BErlin Wall on a fictitious autumn day in the 1980s. Don't miss the fine pictures of the fall of the Wall in the foyer.
Don't expect to find any tourists here. To be honest there's not much to see: no hipster shops, no museums, no bars, no memorials. But there is piece of the Wall here, and it's untouched and genuine - what they call a 'wild Wall'.