Free Walking Tour Berlin

When: Every day 10am & 12pm every day
Where: The meeting point is in front of the ehemaliges Kaiserliches Postfuhramt Berlin, Oranienburger Straße, 10117 Berlin, Germany, next to the entrance.
Price: Free

The Legacy of the Berlin Wall: A Historical Monument Dividing a City

by | Mar 7, 2024 | Original Berlin


The Berlin Wall, once a symbol of division and political strife, now holds a unique place in history. Created in the wake of World War II, the wall functioned as a physical and ideological barrier between East and West Germany for nearly three decades. Today, despite its demolition in 1989, fragments of the Berlin Wall continue to exist as powerful reminders of the city’s turbulent past.

Origins of the Berlin Wall

After World War II, Germany was divided into four zones controlled by the Allies: the United States, the Soviet Union, Britain, and France. In 1949, the Soviet-controlled zone became the German Democratic Republic (GDR), also known as East Germany, while the Western zones formed the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), or West Germany. Over time, the political and economic differences between the two Germanys grew, leading to a massive wave of emigration from East to West.

The Construction

On the night of August 13, 1961, construction of the Berlin Wall began. Barbed wire fences were rapidly erected to divide the city, preventing East Germans from fleeing to the West. This initial makeshift barrier was later replaced by a massive concrete wall that stood at around 12 feet high, fortified with watchtowers, guard dogs, and armed patrols. The wall extended for a length of approximately 96 miles, effectively sealing off West Berlin from East Germany.

The Impact

The Berlin Wall had a profound impact on the lives of those living in both East and West Germany. Families were separated, communities were torn apart, and countless individuals lost their lives attempting to escape to the West. However, the wall also served as a stark symbol of the ideological divide between the communist Eastern Bloc and the democratic Western world.

The Fall of the Wall

The fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, 1989, marked a momentous occasion in world history. Peaceful protests in East Germany led to the eventual opening of the checkpoints, allowing East Germans to freely cross into West Berlin. The demolition of the wall soon followed, as people from both sides chipped away at its concrete structure. This event not only signaled the end of the Cold War but also paved the way for German reunification.

What Remains Today

Despite most of the wall being demolished, several sections and fragments of the Berlin Wall still exist today, serving as important historical landmarks. These remnants can be found at various locations, each offering a glimpse into the city’s past and the division that once defined it.

East Side Gallery

The East Side Gallery, located along the Berlin Wall’s former path in Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, is one of the most famous sections that still remains. After the fall of the wall, more than 100 international artists were invited to create murals on the remaining stretch of concrete. This open-air gallery has since become a symbol of celebration, showcasing artworks that depict the hopes, dreams, and struggles of the German people during this transformative period.

Checkpoint Charlie

Another important site is Checkpoint Charlie, one of the most well-known and iconic border crossings during the Cold War. Although the original guardhouse was removed, a replica was erected in its place to preserve the historical significance of the location. The nearby museum offers a fascinating insight into the lives of those affected by the wall, displaying artifacts, photographs, and personal stories.

Memorial to the Wall

The Memorial to the Wall, situated near Bernauer Strasse, is a poignant reminder of the wall’s impact on Berlin’s landscape. Stretching for approximately 1.4 kilometers, the memorial features a preserved section of the wall along with a documentation center highlighting the stories of those affected. Visitors can explore an outdoor exhibition and gain further understanding of the division’s consequences.

Preserving History

Efforts have been made to ensure the preservation of these remaining sections of the Berlin Wall. Conservationists work tirelessly to protect the artwork and monumental sections from decay, vandalism, and graffiti. Educational programs and guided tours are also available to provide visitors with a comprehensive understanding of the historical context surrounding the wall and its impact on the lives of countless individuals.


The remnants of the Berlin Wall continue to capture the imagination of people worldwide. They stand as a testament to the resilience and determination of those affected by the division. Whether it is the colorful murals of the East Side Gallery or the solemn Memorial to the Wall, these fragments preserve the memory of a significant era in history and serve as a reminder of the importance of unity and freedom.

Thank you for reading. If you're inspired by the stories of Berlin and want to delve deeper, why not join us on our Free Berlin Walking Tour? It's a wonderful way to immerse yourself in the city's rich history and vibrant culture. We look forward to welcoming you soon.


  • 3.5 hours walking tour
  • Berlin’s major highlights
  • Brandenburg Gate
  • Reichstag and Berlin Wall
  • Historical sites

Free Walking Tour Berlin

When: Every day 10am & 12pm every day
Where: The meeting point is in front of the ehemaliges Kaiserliches Postfuhramt Berlin, Oranienburger Straße, 10117 Berlin, Germany, next to the entrance.
Price: Free