Travel back in time and experience life behind the Iron Curtain on a 3-hour guided tour of East Berlin. Explore some of the monuments still standing from before the fall of the Berlin Wall, such as the “Palace of Tears” and the former HQ of the Stasi.
What to Expect
Take an historical 3-hour tour behind the Iron Curtain and learn about life in East Berlin before the fall of the Berlin Wall.
In the company of an historian guide, you will explore surviving monuments of the East German regime, including the infamous Berlin Wall and Stasi headquarters. Your guide will reveal the links between modern Berlin’s built environment and its dark and hidden history, now shrouded in mystery and nostalgia.
Start at the Brandenburg Gate, near the grandiose monument of the former Soviet Embassy, built from the rubble of World War II as a bold declaration of Stalin’s ambition to control all Berlin. Continue to Friedrichstrasse train station, a key crossing point between East and West Berlin. When families were torn apart by East Germany’s iron¬fisted immigration laws, they said their sad goodbyes in the office known as the “Palace of Tears.”
Farther along, the Berlin Wall memorial allows you to experience the notorious Death Strip, and hear stories of East Berliners whose attempts to escape led to their tragic deaths. At the former Stasi headquarters, you will learn how its feared leader, Eric Mielke, recruited a massive network of spies and created innovative surveillance techniques.
Finally, visit Alexanderplatz, the center of public life in East Berlin, rebuilt in the 1960s. This symbol of East German pride was the setting for the demonstrations that led to the regime’s downfall in 1989, and brought 40 years of Communist rule to an end.
Know Before You Go
• Tour guides are all professors, doctoral students, historians, journalists, art critics or published authors