Destination Berlin: Checkpoint Charlie

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The scene of one of the hottest moments of the Cold War, Checkpoint Charlie was one of the places of passage between East Berlin and West Berlin, armored and controlled by the US military, built in the section of wall at the confluence of two of the main arteries of the city: between Friedrichstraße and Zimmerstraße.

source: flickr.com

It was here that on October 25, 1961, armed Soviet and American tanks lined up in front of the other ones, in an act of force ended in favor of American troops who secured the right to move freely around Berlin. With the split of the city in two, it was necessary to ensure that no inhabitant of the GDR tried to go to the West, therefore different checkpoints were installed which are named after the NATO phonetic alphabet: Checkpoint Alpha separated East Germany from West Germany; Checkpoint Bravo separated East Germany from West Berlin and Checkpoint Charlie, the third in the order, had the daunting task of monitoring the border between Americans and Soviets.

source: flickr.com

With the wall, it was dismantled also the Checkpoint Charlie, and what we see today is a reproduction made in 2000, with the suggestive posters of two soldiers: an American with an eye toward a Soviet East Berlin and looking towards the West zone, and the famous sign announcing “you’re leaving the American sector.”

source: flickr.com

You can also visit the museum “House at Checkpoint Charlie”, where is set up a permanent exhibition on the history of the Wall and are exposed to the weirdest objects used for the most amazing escape attempts of the inhabitants of East Berlin.

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USEFUL INFO

Opening hours: open air

Admission: free

How to reach: Metro Kochstraße (U6)

Address: Friedrichstraße 43-45, 10117 Berlin

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