Berlin, Europe, Germany

Berlin’s My New Home And I Need To Write About It More.

September 8, 2011
Brandenburg Gate

From Toronto to Berlin, Here I Am

September 1, 2011 marked my three month anniversary of moving to Berlin all the way from Toronto, Canada. The longer I’m here, the more that I love it and I hope to make it my home for the foreseeable future.

It was then I realized that I haven’t featured a lot of content about Berlin on my blog nor discussed my reasons for moving here. I want to change this and will start with today’s post for “Travel Photo Thursdays.”

One of the city’s most famous landmarks is that of the Brandenburg Gate (Brandenburger Tor in German).

Berlin's Brandenburg Gate

Brandenburg Gate

Brandenburg Gate
Even though I was living in Berlin, the city was entirely new to me. A perfect opportunity to explore the city arrived when some people I knew from Toronto were in town. We took a free New Europe city tour that started at Brandenburg Gate where we learned about it’s history.

This beautiful and impressive gate was heavily damaged during WWII and only restored to it’s former grandeur in 2002. A symbol of “division and reunification”, the Soviets closed the Eastern side of the checkpoint from 1961 until 1989 when they lost power. It was here that John F Kennedy gave his famous speech and where musicians like Michael Jackson, Genesis and David Bowie performed concerts that incited the politics of the time.

Check out this article about the file the Stasi (East German secret police) kept on Michael Jackson and for the full low-down of the gate’s history, read all about it on the Wikepedia and Berlin.de web sites.

One of the great things about living in Berlin is getting to learn more about it’s history and really get a feel for how recent events have shaped the city. Looking at the gate and knowing all it represents is a really powerful experience.

Travel Photo Thursday. This post was submitted to the Budget Travelers Sandbox weekly “Travel Photo Thursday” series where bloggers are provided opportunity to showcase their travel photos.

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22 Comments

  • Reply Sophie September 8, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    Cool photos of Brandenburger Tor. I actually remember having to cross an international border to see the gate from other side :)

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 8, 2011 at 3:28 pm

      Thanks so much! It’s hard to believe how recent some of the history is … crazy, really!

  • Reply Muza-chan September 8, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    Interesting article, I love Berlin too :)

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 8, 2011 at 3:27 pm

      Thanks! I think it’s one of the best cities in the world but … I may be just a little biased.

  • Reply Cheryl Howard September 8, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    Thanks. Definitely come! It’s such an amazing and very bizarre city.

  • Reply Leigh September 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm

    Exploring a new city through the lens of a camera is a great way to notice the detail. I plan to do the same thing in my new city – Calgary. It doesn’t have quite the same allure as Berlin.
    Love the top shot.

    • Reply Cheryl September 9, 2011 at 12:26 am

      Thanks! I love Calgary. Lived there for 4 months to do my final semester of college!

  • Reply Laurel September 8, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    The Brandenburg Gate is just one of many reasons why I really need to get to Berlin this year. I really like the perspective of the last shot.

  • Reply Cathy Sweeney September 8, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    I was disappointed that I didn’t visit Berlin on my trip to Germany this summer. Hope do get there soon. Love your photos of the Brandenburg Gate — such history!

    • Reply Cheryl September 9, 2011 at 12:27 am

      Thank you Cathy! Please visit soon … its a wonderful city … weird but wonderful!

  • Reply InsideJourneys September 9, 2011 at 1:30 am

    I love ‘old’ buildings – they have character.

  • Reply Michael Figueiredo September 9, 2011 at 1:35 am

    Nice shots, Cheryl. I remember seeing the Gate when I was in Berlin in 1995!

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 9, 2011 at 9:37 am

      Thanks Michael. So you seen it before the restoration … cool!! :)

  • Reply Nancie September 9, 2011 at 1:44 am

    Great shots Cheryl. Berlin looks like a great city to call home. I was there many years ago, but don’t remember that much about it.

    Thanks for joining another great week of Travel Photo Thursday.

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 9, 2011 at 9:36 am

      Thank you Nancie! It’s quite the city … hope you make it back for a visit someday. Thanks as always for hosting Travel Photo Thursday.

  • Reply fotoeins | Henry September 10, 2011 at 2:37 am

    Cheryl, the gate really is a standout, and is very much an enduring symbol for both city and country. I hope you make your way via S-Bahn to Potsdam, where there’s a smaller but older Brandenburg Gate in town at Luisenplatz (near the Dutch Quarter and Sanssouci park).

    I’m hoping to make my European base to be centred in Berlin for 3 months next year in the fall in time for the many Christmas markets (Weihnachtsmärkte). I’ll look forward to reading about your impressions of living in the German Hauptstadt.

    Thanks for the great photos and your post!

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 10, 2011 at 9:11 am

      I have not been to Potsdam yet but plan to make a day trip there this month sometime. I’ve heard it’s really pretty! I love Berlin so far and I also cannot wait until Christmas.

  • Reply Jim September 10, 2011 at 6:50 am

    It will be great to see pics and read more about Berlin while you’re there Cheryl. I know there’s more to Germany than Wurst and sauerkraut but I want to see it, smell it and gorge on that whenever I come here!

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 10, 2011 at 9:10 am

      Thanks Jim! You can’t forget the beer and the German purity law either. I’ll definitely keep writing as I’ve had a busy summer experiencing tourist attractions and also just every day life. Hope you visit soon … it’s a beautiful country. :)

  • Reply Sabrina September 15, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    The third shot of the Brandenburger Tor is my favorite. So pretty! I’m from Germany and once spent almost two months in Berlin. Unfortunately, I was working way too much and didn’t know anybody, so I got to see way too little of the city. Would love to return for sightseeing one day.

    • Reply Cheryl Howard September 15, 2011 at 5:12 pm

      Thanks! Let me know if you´re ever back to visit. We should meetup.

  • Reply The Stones Of Berlin's Holocaust Memorial. | cherylhoward.com September 16, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    […] built to commemorate the Jewish people lost in WWII. In keeping with my promise to write more about my new home of Berlin, here’s a photo of the city’s Holocaust Memorial (or Holocaust-Mahnmal in […]

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