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Berlin is best known for its historical associations as the German capital, for its lively nightlife, for its many cafes, clubs, and bars, and for its numerous museums, palaces, and other sites of historic interest. Berlin's architecture is quite varied and it is now possible to see representatives of many different historic periods in a short time.

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» Oberbaum Bridge

Oberbaum Bridge , Berlin

The Oberbaum Bridge, or Oberbaumbrücke in German, was built in the late 1800s and crosses the River Spree to connect the neighborhoods of Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain in Berlin. The bridge has mock medieval turrets and seven arches. It's a two level bridge with the lower level for cars and the upper level for the U1 U-bahn trains. During the Cold War, this bridge was a landmark dividing East Berlin from West Berlin. Armed guards patrolled the banks of the river …

» Olympic Stadium (Olympiastadion)

Olympic Stadium (Olympiastadion) , Berlin

The Olympic Stadium, which seats over 74,000 people, is best known for hosting the FIFA World Cup soccer championship in 2006. It is the central venue for major events and concerts in Berlin and also serves as home field to the football club Hertha BSC Berlin. The Olympic Stadium was originally built for the 1936 Summer Olympic Games. Hitler took advantage of the opportunity provided by the Games to present a propagandistic image of National Socialist Germany to the world …

» Pergamon Museum (Pergamonmuseum)

Pergamon Museum (Pergamonmuseum), Berlin

Antique art from the Middle East and Turkey is featured at Berlin's important Pergamon Museum. In terms of 'wow factor' the collection is matched only by the British Museum. The highlights are the monumental exhibits from the Roman era, in particular the massive Pergamon Altar from the 2nd century BC and the Market Gate of Miletus. Fabulous examples from the art of the Near East include the famous Ishtar Gate from ancient Babylon, and the lovely tiled lions from the Processional Way …

» Philharmonic Hall

Philharmonic Hall , Berlin

The Berlin Philharmonic is the city's concert hall and home to the city's Philharmonic Orchestra. The facility actually has two venues, one with 2,440 seats for orchestra concerts and a chamber music hall with 1,180 seats. The hall was constructed in the early 1960s, and it replaced one that was destroyed during World War II. The chamber music hall was added in the 1980s. The building is know for its acoustics, its bright yellow color, and its asymmetrical, tent-like shape …

» Potsdamer Platz

Potsdamer Platz, Berlin

The huge Potsdamer Platz has been a major focal point for Berliners since the 19th century, the busy meeting point of half a dozen major thoroughfares. Historically, the square was dominated by the enormous Potsdamer train terminal, and at the turn of the 20th century it was a major dining, hotel, entertainment and shopping hub. Potsdamer Platz was destroyed by Allied raids during World War II. Before reunification the barren area was a militarized no-go zone …

» Potsdam's Gardens

Potsdam's Gardens , Berlin

Havel, 24 kilometers southwest of Berlin's city center. It is a great day trip outside of the city and not to be confused with Potsdamer Platz, which is a square in Berlin. Potsdam acquired some importance when the Great Elector of Brandenburg, Frederick William (1620-88) established his residence there. Potsdam housed a small garrison from 1640 onwards; the site's military function was strengthened by the young Prussian monarchy …

» Prenzlauer Berg

Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin

Prenzlauer Berg is a neighborhood in Berlin west of Mitte and was part of East Berlin while the city was divided. During World War II, relatively few buildings were destroyed in this area compared with other parts of the city, and as a result, there are over 300 buildings are protected as historic monuments. The neighborhood has a wide variety of restaurants, bars and clubs where many people spend their evenings, mostly near the Eberswalder Strasse U-bahn station …

» Reichstag

Reichstag, Berlin

Topped with an acclaimed glass dome designed by British architect Norman Foster, the Reichstag parliamentary building is home to Germany's Parliament, the Bundestag. The classically pedimented and columned building was built in the 1890s, and seriously damaged by fire in 1933 and subsequent air raids. In the 1990s the building was restored to host the parliament of the newly reunified Germany …

» Sachsenhausen

Sachsenhausen, Berlin

Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp was one of the most notorious death camps of the Nazi regime, located just north of Berlin. It was built in the summer of 1936 by prisoners from the Emsland camps and was used to train SS Officers who went on to command other camps. In January 1945, there were more than 65,000 prisoners here including 13,000 women. A total of 105,000 Jews died in this camp. Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg was liberated by the Allies on April 22nd, 1945 …

» Sanssouci Palace

Sanssouci Palace, Berlin

Step back to the 17th century with a visit to the lavish rococo palace of Frederick the Great, Sanssouci. A reminder of the days when Potsdam was the royal seat of the Brandenburg-Prussian rulers, this famous palace is known for its voluptuous interiors and manicured gardens. Take a tour of the marble and statue-filled rooms, the colonnaded courtyard, the grand Dining Room, King's bedroom and circular library …

» Schwules Museum (Gay Museum)

Schwules Museum (Gay Museum) , Berlin

The success of the exhibit “Eldorado – the History, Everyday Life and Culture of Homosexual Women and Men 1850-1950” in 1984 at what was then called the Berlin Museum inspired the creation of the Schwules Museum, or the Gay Museum. The three people who initiated the original exhibition, along with a group of activists, founded the Verein der Freunde eines Schwulen Museums in 1985, and in 1986 they had their first exhibit …

» Tempelhof Airport

Tempelhof Airport, Berlin

Tempelhof Airport was designated as an airport in 1923, but it is well known for its significance in post-World War II Berlin. In 1948, Soviet authorities halted all traffic by land and water in and out of West Berlin and because West Berlin was surrounded by East Berlin and East Germany, residents needed another way to get food and other essential supplies. This was the start of the Berlin Airlift …

» The Holocaust Memorial

The Holocaust Memorial , Berlin

The Holocaust Memorial, also known as The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, is an urban tribute to remember and honor up to six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Located within walking distance between the Brandenburg Gate and Potsdamer Platz, the Memorial consists of the Field of Stelae designed by Peter Eisenman and the underground Information Center. Eisenmann set up 2,711 concrete pillars - so-called stelaes - of varying heights …

» Tiergarten Park

Tiergarten Park, Berlin

Berlin's Central Park is Tiergarten, a huge stretch of parkland, formal gardens and leafy walkways in the city's west. Until the 1830s the parkland was used as a hunting ground. Today it houses the home of the German President, an array of public sculptures and memorials, canals and lakes, and a network of lovely shady avenues. The park's avenues merge on the 66 meter (216 foot) Victory Tower, topped with a gilt angel. If you're feeling fit, you can climb the 285 steps …

» Topography of Terror

Topography of Terror , Berlin

The Topography of Terror exhibition and documentation center covers the history of terror during the Nazi era. The centers of this national-socialist terror between 1933 and 1945 were the Gestapo and its prison, the SS headquarters, the SS Security Service (SD) and the Reichssicherheitshauptamt (Main Office for State Security). These institutions were located in the immediate vicinity of the Nazi government district, and the history of the crimes originating there …

» Treptower Park

Treptower Park , Berlin

Treptower Park in Berlin dates back to the end of the 18th century and runs along the Spree – the city's most famous river. Perhaps best known for the Soviet War Memorial located in it, this public park is the perfect place for a leisurely stroll and perhaps a spot of people-watching, particularly alongside the river's promenade. At the end of World War II, three war memorials were built in Berlin to commemorate Soviet deaths – particularly the 80,000 soldiers killed during the Battle of Berlin …

» Unter den Linden

Unter den Linden , Berlin

Named for the lime trees lining its central pedestrianized strip, Unter den Linden is one of Berlin's most famous thoroughfares, and the former hub of historic Berlin. Many of the avenue's once palatial buildings are being restored, and it's a popular location for embassies, shops, outdoor cafes, museums and educational institutions. A walk along the Unter den Linden is especially magical at night, when the trees are lit up, and during the autumn colors of fall …

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Even though Berlin does have a number of impressive buildings from earlier centuries, the city's appearance today is mainly shaped by the key role it played in Germany's history in the 20th century. Each of the governments initiated ambitious construction programs …

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Berlin became the capital of the Federal Republic of Germany after unification in 1990. The historic center of town is a delight for visitors with grand buildings and monuments from the Baroque and Neoclassical periods. Beautiful Tiergarten park occupies 200 lush hectares in the center of the city …

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