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

Why was the Soviet Cenotaph built in Treptow, Berlin?

by | Mar 7, 2024 | Walking Tour

The Soviet Cenotaph in Treptow Park, Berlin, stands as a powerful symbol of remembrance and respect for the Soviet Union’s soldiers who lost their lives during World War II. This monumental structure, completed in 1949, serves as a memorial not only to honor the fallen but also as a testament to the lasting partnership between Germany and the Soviet Union in the face of Nazi aggression.

A Symbol of Gratitude and Brotherhood

The Soviet Cenotaph, also known as the Memorial to the Soviet Army, occupies an area of approximately 100,000 square meters within Treptow Park. Its central feature is a large statue of a Soviet soldier holding a child and crushing a broken swastika under his boot.

This powerful imagery serves to symbolize the triumph of good over evil and the liberation of Germany from the grips of fascism. The statue itself stands at an impressive 13 meters tall, mounted on a granite pedestal adorned with sculptures and reliefs representing various facets of the war.

Sculptures and Reliefs

Walking around the Cenotaph, visitors can view a series of sculptural elements and reliefs that enhance the overall narrative of the memorial. These artistic pieces depict scenes of bravery, sacrifice, and resilience during the war.

  • One of the reliefs portrays a Soviet soldier carrying an injured comrade, highlighting the compassion and unity among soldiers in the face of adversity.
  • Another relief showcases a Soviet soldier wielding a sword, signifying the determination to defend justice against tyranny.
  • A sculpture titled “The Motherland” stands tall at the entrance, representing a grieving female figure, symbolizing the motherland mourning the loss of her sons.

The Crypt and Eternal Flame

Beneath the central statue lies a crypt containing the remains of approximately 7,000 Soviet soldiers. This somber space is a place of reflection and remembrance.

In front of the crypt, an eternal flame burns as a symbol of undying gratitude and honor to the fallen soldiers. This flame, constantly lit, serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made to secure freedom and peace.

Preserving History and Memory

Visiting the Soviet Cenotaph in Treptow is not only an opportunity to pay respects but also to learn about the historical context and significance of World War II. The memorial serves as a reminder of the atrocities committed during the war and the importance of preserving peace.

Educational Significance

Within the grounds of the memorial, there is a museum dedicated to educating visitors about the Soviet Union’s role in defeating Nazi Germany. The museum displays artifacts, photographs, and documents that offer valuable insights into the war and the experiences of both soldiers and civilians.

By exploring this museum, visitors can gain a deeper understanding of the sacrifices made and the extraordinary bravery exhibited by the Soviet soldiers and their allies.

The Annual Memorial Ceremony

Each year on May 9th, the memorial hosts a solemn memorial ceremony on Victory Day. The ceremony attracts thousands of attendees who come to pay their respects and commemorate the end of World War II.

During the ceremony, wreaths are laid at the foot of the central statue, and speeches are given to honor the fallen soldiers. The event is a poignant reminder of the importance of remembering history and fostering international unity.

Visiting the Soviet Cenotaph

The Soviet Cenotaph is located in Treptow Park, in the eastern part of Berlin, Germany. It is easily accessible by public transportation, and entry is free for all visitors.

When planning your visit, it’s important to show respect and behave in a solemn manner while within the memorial grounds. Photography is permitted, but always be mindful of the atmosphere and the significance of the site.

Remember, the Soviet Cenotaph is not just a collection of statues and sculptures; it is a place that embodies the collective memory and demonstrates the enduring gratitude for the sacrifices made during World War II.

By visiting this memorial and learning about the history it represents, we can ensure that the memory of those who fought and died for our freedom lives on.

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.

WHAT TO EXPECT

  • 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