Checkpoint Charlie is a former border crossing point between East and West Berlin during the Cold War. It was the site of many dramatic events, such as the stand-off between Soviet and American tanks in 1961, the escape attempts of East Germans, and the exchange of spies. Today, it is a popular tourist attraction that offers a glimpse into the history of divided Berlin.
The Checkpoint Charlie Museum (Mauermuseum) is open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and displays exhibits related to the Berlin Wall, the Cold War, and the human rights movement. The admission fee is 14.50 euros for adults and 9.50 euros for students and children. You can also book guided tours of the museum and the surrounding area for an additional fee.
To get to Checkpoint Charlie, you can take the U-Bahn (subway) to Kochstrasse or Stadtmitte stations, or the S-Bahn (city train) to Anhalter Bahnhof station. You can also take various buses that stop near the checkpoint.
Some tips for visiting Checkpoint Charlie are:
- Avoid peak hours and weekends if you want to avoid crowds and long queues.
- Bring your own headphones if you want to use the audio guide in the museum, as they charge extra for renting them.
- Beware of fake soldiers who pose for photos with tourists at the checkpoint. They are not affiliated with the museum and will ask for money after taking pictures.
- Don’t forget to explore the nearby attractions, such as the Berlin Wall Memorial, the Topography of Terror, and the Jewish Museum.
Some prohibitions for visiting Checkpoint Charlie are:
- Do not cross the street without looking both ways, as it is a busy traffic area.
- Do not touch or damage any of the exhibits or historical artifacts in the museum.
- Do not bring any weapons, explosives, or drugs to the checkpoint or the museum.
- Do not make any jokes or gestures that could be considered offensive or disrespectful to the history of the place.
Some things to see at Checkpoint Charlie are:
- The replica of the original guardhouse and sign that marked the border crossing point.
- The outdoor exhibition that shows photos and information about the history of Checkpoint Charlie and the Berlin Wall.
- The Haus am Checkpoint Charlie, which is a building that houses part of the museum and a café.
- The Wall panorama, which is a large-scale painting that depicts life on both sides of the wall in 1980s Berlin.