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Berlin Wall
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berlin smallgroup third reich and cold war walking tour

Berlin: Small-Group Third Reich and Cold War Walking Tour

Duration: 2 hours
87 Reviews
GetYourGuide Original
87

Discover Berlin’s unique story on a 2-hour walking tour. Enjoy a smaller group experience, starting from Brandenburg Gate and encompassing a long…

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5 historical facts about the Berlin Wall

For 28 years the Berlin Wall symbolized an ideological stalemate and its fall was swiftly followed by that of the Soviet Union. It's shaped the contemporary life of a city and the attitudes of its residents, so here are some things to know before your trip.

It was built in 1961 to cut off access to West Berlin

It was built in 1961 to cut off access to West Berlin

Berlin was the main route for the 3.5 million East Germans emigrating to the West prior to 1961. The 155km wall was intended to stifle a hemorrhaging workforce!

The wall couldn't stop emigration...

The wall couldn't stop emigration...

An estimated 100,000 still escaped East Germany after the wall went up. In the first two years, 1,300 of them were border guards!

...But it could slow it down!

...But it could slow it down!

Crossing wasn't easy, of course. At least 98 people were killed as a result of trying to sneak through, although some counts put the death toll well above 200!

There were plenty of imaginative escapes

There were plenty of imaginative escapes

East Berliners devised many daring ways of entering the West, from tightropes, zip-lines, and hot air balloons to crashing through in a speeding train!

It was torn down in 1989

It was torn down in 1989

Misinformation about relaxed regulations spread across East German news, driving citizens to gather at the wall hoping to cross. Outnumbered, the border guards eventually gave way!

Our insider tips

Where is it now?

Most of the wall has been demolished, but tourists can still visit preserved segments, such as the Eastside Gallery (so-called for its large graffiti murals running along the Spree River's east bank between Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain). A notable section is also visible at the Berlin Wall Memorial on Bernauer Strasse. City tours should cover most of the sites, including Checkpoint Charlie – the famous American checkpoint on Friedrichstrasse.

When to visit?

Berlin is a true summer city and there are few better ways to spend a sun-soaked visit than to tour its sights by foot or by bike! If your visit has been cursed by cold or rainy weather, however, visit the segment at the Berlin Wall Memorial. It can be viewed from the top floor of its Visitors' Center, which also provides fascinating insights into life behind the wall.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Outdoor areas are always open, but the Visitors' Center is open Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00AM to 6:00PM.
  • Is it expensive?
    The open areas and Visitors' Center are free to visit, but the Center does accept donations.
  • Will I need a guide?
    A tour is definitely worth it! Might be worth it to check out our best-selling tours.
  • How to get there
    Depending on the exhibit you wish to see, directions will vary, but the wall is easily reachable!
  • Additional information
    ** Remember to remain respectful during your visit. | Check the weather! Berlin can get windy quickly so plan ahead.*

What people are saying about Berlin Wall

Overall rating
4.7 / 5
based on 24,608 reviews

Tailor-made, inspiring and informative, expertise and subtle details

An excellent introduction and overview for a first-time or returning visitor. Inspiration for further discoveries and valuable tips beyond your average guide(book) or website. Expert knowledge combined with anecdotal local insight, presented in a digestible and engaging manner in impeccable English. The tour makes you reflect upon and appreciate Berlin's defining historical moments and their link with architecture, urban planning and contemporary culture. An ideal balance between serious content and more light-hearted and friendly dialogue with a qualified professional. The personal viewpoints and interpretation provided food for thought. We particularly appreciated the effort to make the tour enjoyable even for children (aged 9-12) who remained engaged throughout and set up with appropriate bikes. When your bike tour is organised and run by a Dutchman, you are in good hands. :-) Also an asset in providing a refreshing and open-minded take on German history and culture.

Berlin: Highlights Cycling Tour Reviewed by

Engrossing, highly informative and good fun at the same time

This was a great tour! I’m a Brit and worked in Berlin for 3.5 years but never really had the chance to explore the city in depth, and my girlfriend is Bulgarian and lived under Communism and wanted to see a little of the former East Berlin. This tour was great for both of us. The groups are deliberately kept small, I think there were 11 people on our tour, a mix of Brits and Americans, very good humoured, some real laughs along the way. Our Guide - Josh, was excellent, he informed but also elicited answers and discussions from the group on places we had just visited. There was no pressure to get involved, but everyone took part anyway because of the thought provoking subject matter of the tour and what we were seeing. This was the best thing we did in Berlin during our 4 day break there and we would recommend it to anyone wanting to see below the ‘surface’ of Berlin. Thanks Josh! Steve and Liya

So worth it! It was an incredibly fun and in-depth look at the city.

Scott was absolutely phenomenal, he shared insights and wisdom into not only the history and the story of the city but into the people, culture and art as well. I absolutely loved and valued how he invited us to explore the deeper meaning of each aspect on our own and allowed us to come to our own informed conclusions from what we felt and the knowledge he shared with us. It takes someone pretty special to make such a heartbreaking story so powerful and beautifully inspiring.

Discover Berlin Walking Tour Reviewed by

Outstanding and excellent value for money.

We joined Mike on his Third Reich and Cold War tour yesterday and it was outstanding. He is a superb tour guide, enthusiastic, energetic and enthralling. We brought our sons to Berlin to help them in their history studies and Mike's tour engaged and inspired them more than anything else that we did during our tour of the city. And it was excellent value for money! Highly recommended.

Wow! This was absolutely information rich and great fun too

Fantastic guide Rhys was both fun and a mine of information. The cycling was easy paced, the bikes were in great condition and ideal for sloping around the centre of Berlin. The sights were terrific and the information was delivered with great humour and thoughtfulness. A real tour de force. Well worth the money. The weather really helped too on a very sunny Saturday morning.

Berlin Highlights: 3-Hour Bike Tour Reviewed by

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