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30 Years fall of the Wall

2019: Berlin celebrates 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall: The Wall fell on 9 November 1989. And that marks the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall - if that is no reason to celebrate, but also to commemorate. Numerous events and exhibitions are taking place in Berlin around the anniversary, for which it is definitely worth coming to Berlin.

As early as 2014, the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall was duly celebrated with a light border on the former Wall strip. This year Berlin has planned a big festival, which will take place from 4th to 10th November 2019. An open-air exhibition and event area will thus be created at seven locations in the city. These locations were important scenes of the 1989/90 events - follow the Berlin Route of the Revolution. The highlight of the festival week will be a concert on the evening of 9 November, during which national and international artists will perform. Their stories and music are closely linked to the fall of the Berlin Wall.

All events during the fall of the Wall anniversary

9 November 1989: The Berlin Wall comes down

On 9 November 1989 the Berlin Wall came down after more than 28 years. Follow the events that ultimately led to the fall of the Wall in our timeline. To mark the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, Berlin is celebrating for seven days in seven symbolic places around the city with an open-air festival.

How did the people feel the night the Berlin wall fell?

It was my first big party and the best party of my life - never have I celebrated more relaxed, boundless. Squeezed among strangers who were as close to me that night as my parents were. It was November 9, 1989. We heard about the party of the decade from the news. I was only 10 years old at that time, but I remember these pictures of people dancing in the neon light of the border fortress (Berlin Lichtenrade) as if it had been yesterday. That night everything was unique. Unforgettable.

Sophia, 39 years old

On November 9th I visited my grandparents in Berlin (I lived with my parents outside Berlin at that time). In the early evening my grandmother took me to the cinema (Arielle the Mermaid). After that we went straight home. My grandmother had been surprised that so many people are in the city, but since we neither listened to the radio nor watched television, we didn't notice the opening of the borders. But the next morning, of course, we did. I immediately called my mother. She told me that my brother had called her in the middle of the night. She - totally sleepy - answered the phone: "Mummy, Mummy, guess where I am", Kay asked. My mother: "Kay, I don't care where you are! It's the middle of the night and we were asleep!" Kay: "Man, mum, I'm on the Ku'damm!" My mother: "Kay, how many times have I told you not to drink so much beer!!!" Well, the rest of the night she couldn't sleep anymore. My parents hung spellbound in front of the television.

Joyce, 40 years old

We had to work till just before midnight. But my wife and I had already received the unbelievably good news in the course of the evening: The wall was open. East Berlin was now empty. So you could get a taxi. We drove to the station Friedrichstraße: the divided station with the huge so far almost insurmountable steel plate between the platforms. We go into the palace of tears. A border guard takes a look at our identity cards. The path leads through an unadorned tunnel. Neon light flickers. Goose bumps. An ambience like the way to Stasi hell. But the opposite is the case. We can hardly believe it. The suburban train leaves. Experienced a thousand times; but this time in a different direction. Shortly before entering the Lehrter Bahnhof (today the main station): pure emotions and lots of tears of joy, the most beautiful day of our lives.

Kerstin, 51 years old & Oliver, 54 years old

Discover the history of the Berlin Wall

The East Side Gallery is the longest surviving section of the Berlin Wall. In 1990, more than 100 artists from over 20 countries decorated this stretch of the hinterland wall with their art works. The most famous is undoubtedly the work known as the “Fraternal Kiss”, depicting a kiss between Russian leader Leonid Brezhnev and East Germany’s SED Party Chairman Erich Honecker.

But Potsdamer Platz, Checkpoint Charlie and the Brandenburg Gate are also key sites in the history of the Berlin Wall.

Traces of the Berlin Wall

Berlin was a divided city for nearly thirty years – a city with a wall running through its very heart. From 13 August 1961 until 9 November 1989, the Berlin Wall divided the city into East and West Berlin.

Today, all across the city you can find traces of the Wall, its remains and memorial sites – the East Side Gallery, the Berlin Wall Memorial in Bernauer Strasse, the Berlin-Hohenschönhausen Memorial, a former Stasi remand prison, and the green Mauerpark.

The route of the Berlin Wall is even marked along some of Berlin’s streets by a double row of cobblestones.

The Berlin Wall Cycle Route also offers a great way to trace the route of the Wall by bike. The route crosses the city following the path of the Berlin Wall. The entire cycle route covers over 160 kilometres along the former GDR border encircling West Berlin.
 

Where the Wall once stood

From Potsdamer Platz to East Side Gallery

Berlin Wall
Palace of Tears Berlin at night
© Stiftung Haus der Geschichte, Foto: Axel Thünker

Tränenpalast

Parting tears. This is what the partition of Germany meant for many Berliners and their personal stories can be found in the Tränenpalast (Palace of Tears).

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Berlin Mauerpark by bike
© visitBerlin, Foto: Carsten Rasmus/KlaRas-Verlag

Mauerpark

Amble through the flea market, a drink from the off licence on the lawn and singing along to open air karaoke – your Sunday afternoon in Mauerpark.

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East Side Gallery

The East Side Gallery is the longest surviving section of the Berlin Wall. In 1990, more than 100 artists from over 20 countries decorated this stretch of the hinterland wall with their art works.

The most famous is undoubtedly the work known as the “Fraternal Kiss”, depicting a kiss between Russian leader Leonid Brezhnev and East Germany’s SED Party Chairman Erich Honecker.

But Potsdamer Platz, Checkpoint Charlie and the Brandenburg Gate are also key sites in the history of the Berlin Wall.

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The sights and attractions our visitors love

Discover the greatest places to visit from other visitors! Here, you can find tickets for the sights and attractions that our Berlin visitors love!

Our travel service offers the ideal way to enjoy a stress-free holiday in Berlin. Buy your tickets for the Berlin Wall tour, the GDR Museum and the Brandenburg Gate Museum easily and conveniently online here.

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The fall of the Berlin Wall

On the evening of 9 November 1989, the Berlin Wall fell. It was a night when innumerable East and West Berliners made history.

They climbed over the concrete walls, crowded through the narrow border crossing points, went at the Berlin Wall with hammers, and retook their city in its entirety. The images of this historical event were shown around the world.

 

Today, almost 30 years on, Berlin is no longer a walled city, but a world city. Since those days, millions of visitors have come to Berlin, Germany’s capital city, to see this change for themselves.

What have the Berliners made of their city since 1989? A creative location, a lifestyle metropolis and a place where history happened.

The fall of the Wall left unused spaces in the urban landscape. Residents and visitors adopted these abandoned areas as creative spaces – from the art scene in Brunnenstraße to the Berlin start-ups at Moritzplatz – or simply enjoyed the new access to the River Spree.

The Berlin Wall: Museums, sites and memorials

In the night from 12 to 13 August 1961, the East German army began sealing off the streets and railway lines providing access to West Berlin. Then the East German regime erected a wall along the sector border.

The border encircling West Berlin was 167.8 kilometres long. In the years of the Berlin Wall, present research shows that between 136 and 206 people died trying to cross from East to West.

The Berlin Wall finally fell on 9 November 1989. The city recalls the victims of the division of Germany at many Berlin Wall sites, museums and memorial sites, such as the Tränenpalast (Palace of Tears), the Berlin Wall Memorial in Bernauer Strasse, and the Berlin-Hohenschönhausen Memorial, a former Stasi remand prison.

Fahrradtour an der East Side Gallery

Mauerradtour

Cycling along the remains of the Wall

See bike tour

Editorial tips for the anniversary of the fall of the Wall

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