If a travel guide says ‘Berlin’, what probably follows is a long write-up about the Berlin Wall, and rightly so. Steeped in heritage yet magnificent with modern graffiti, the technicolour monument is a historical artefact that is anything but boring. Dividing the East and West of the city for nearly 30 years, the wall was erected for socialist East Germany, in attempt to create protection from the ‘fascists’ of the West, and surrounding NATO countries during the Cold War. So strong was the divide that a Visa had to be obtained to travel into East Germany from the West and would only be granted in extreme circumstances. It is argued that between 100-200 deaths occurred from trespassing under guards’ strict shooting orders for defectors.
However, history lesson over, this Tip provides a less sinister approach to visiting the Berlin Wall and instead suggests a way to celebrate the ‘fall’ of the wall as a strict division. Taking a stroll along the East Side Gallery, a memorial section of the wall, the general feeling isn’t one of sadness and mourning but instead a celebration of unity, featuring liberating quotes and controversial artwork. Painted in the 90’s by 105 artists, the gallery is free for all and sure to lift your spirits. The perhaps most famed painting, depicts Soviet leader of the time, Leonid Brezhnev kissing East German counterpart Erich Honecker, and is shown in the featured image of this post.
Once you’re done inspiring yourself and have walked far enough to warrant a reward, Tiplr suggest heading to the nearby Strandgut Beach Bar, it’s hidden well but if you’ve walked the length of the gallery you’re sure to find it. Yep you heard correctly…a man-made beach in the middle of the city on the riverbank, complete with bar, deck chairs, sand and of course it wouldn’t be a Berlin bar without a chic Berlin DJ. Spend a while relaxing here in a perfectly German fashion, with a cold beer before continuing your stroll of the city. Cultural and cool.
Featured Image Photo Credit: www.wtg-global.net