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My friend Amanda recommended the Sandemans’ New Berlin Free Walking Tours which turned out to be a fabulous opportunity to get a lay of the land, so to speak. You can register for the free walk on-line or in person at Brandenburg Tor (in front of the Starbucks). My tour guide was Rob McCracken and proved to be insightful, funny and entertaining.
Brandenburg Tor

Highlights on the tour included:

Brandenburg Tor

(where President Reagan made his famous “Tear Down This Wall!” speech)
Tear Down this Wall” © Wikipedia

Hotel Adlon at Brandenburg Tor

(where Michael Jackson infamously dangled his baby out of the window)

U.S. Embassy at Brandenburg Tor

Holocaust Memorial to the Murdered Jews

Site of Hitler’s Bunker

Luffwaffe HQ (now the Ministry of Finance)

Humboldt University

(Site of the infamous Nazi book burning)
Book Burning Memorial – Empty bookshelves can be seen underneath


All in all, it was a very entertaining tour of Berlin. I would highly recommend a walking tour on your first or second day in town. The crowd at the New Berlin Free Walking Tour was definitely young (under 30) and there was a general expectation that we (the audience) knew very little about Berlin’s history.
New Berlin Walking Tour w/ Rob McCracken

Free Tour of Berlin:

The Joyous Living: Review of Sandeman's Berlin Free Walking Tour

Where: Starbucks, Brandenburg Gate
Languages: English, German, Spanish
Price: Free (Tip Based)
Duration: Approximately 3 hours
Tour Times: 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m.