Postcards From Berlin: What I Did In 24 Hours

Until recently Berlin hadn’t been a city I’d really thought about visiting.  I was lucky enough to be invited to the city by the Chamäleon Theatre, who were keen to showcase what Berlin had to offer as well as their latest show, Scotch and Soda.  My whirlwind tour of city definitely changed my opinion of Berlin as a city break destination.  It has a lot to offer from fabulous hotels to amazing restaurants and thats before you get to the many interesting sights, intriguing and dark history and progressive culture that has emerged out of this ever developing city.

Brandenburg Gate, Berlin

Brandenburg Gate Berlin

It was a beautiful day in Berlin, and we decided that we would explore a little on foot before seeing the show. It was somewhat fitting to start our sightseeing at the Brandenburg Gate, Berlin’s most famous monument situated in the Mitte area of the city.  It was commissioned by King Frederick William II as a sign of peace and marked the beginning of the road between Berlin and Brandenburg an der Havel.

During our visit to the Brandenburg Gate, we spotted this rather interesting way of getting around Berlin.  I have to admit I was tempted to hitch a ride!

Holocaust Memorial

In contrast, our next stop was the Holocaust Memorial which paints a very different history of the city.  I’ve debated with myself whether I should share a picture of the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe on here, and I’ve reached the conclusion that it is something we should remember.  We should reflect on how a man capable of such evil atrocities rose to power, why so many people followed his orders and why so many people died just because of their religion, colour of their skin or their sexuality.  I’ve read articles about the Holocaust Memorial that criticise it for not going far enough to alert visitors to the history of Nazi Germany, and I feel they could have a point.

holocaust memorial Berlin

The Two Sides Of The Berlin Wall

While exploring the city, you are bound to stumble upon parts of the Berlin Wall.  It’s hard to imaging now the city being divided in two both physically and ideologically, but these sections of wall around the city are a start reminder of the differences that it created.

berlin wall no graffiti

Can you spot the difference?

sections of Berlin Wall covered in graffiti

There are also plaques around the city marking where the Berlin wall once stood.

Berlin Wall Plaque with dates on pavement

Check Point Charlie

I’m a big fan of taking the City Tour Bus when I first visit a city.  For a trip like this it was a great way to see different places and pick up some more about the history of Berlin and Germany.  I was also keen to save my energy as there was lots to see before heading home to Heathrow and driving back to Nottingham.

The Berlin City Bus Tour cost us 14 Euros for one route, which was focused on the West of Berlin.  It’s a shame we didn’t get to spend more time in East Berlin, but time was against us.

Berlin City Tour Bus

We got off the bus at Check Point Charlie, which I can only describe as an interesting experience.  You might have seen my comments on Instagram this week about posing with the ‘American’ guards.  It was all quite surreal to be honest.

Check Point Charlie

It’s a really interesting place to visit, especially if you remember the tensions of the Cold War and the political figures involved at the time.  I was a teenager when the Berlin wall came down and I can remember how significant an event this was to the world.

Berlin Dom

There were a few places I wish I had of explored more, and the Berlin Dom is one of them.  The Cathedral of Berlin is certainly magnificent from the outside, but I hope to see it from the inside on my next visit.

Berlin Dom - Green copper roof and blue sky

The Victory Column

One of the last stops of the Berlin City Tour Bus was to go around the Victory Column at Tiergarten.  This is another of Berlin’s most famous tourist spots and symbolises the Prussian victory in the German-Danish war in 1864.  ‘Golden Lizzie’ as she is know amongst Berliners is certainly a grand gesture on the skyline of the city.

victory column

Before leaving the city, we were committed to trying some local beer and bratwurst.  What we actually ended up with was beer and weisswurst,  which is a slightly different concept and not quite as appealing on the eye. Fortunately it does taste better than it looks but it’s probably not an experience I would repeat in a hurry.

German white sausage and beer

So as you can see, it really was a flying visit but I think we managed to cover a lot of ground in 24 hours.  Berlin is definitely a dynamic city, with a lot to offer the curious traveller.  It’s a rollercoaster ride of history and modernism in a city that is desperately trying to strike the balance between not forgetting the past and creating a more positive and inclusive future.

What things to do in Berlin would you like to see most?

Postcards From Berlin What I Did In 24 Hours

This post was written as a result of a press trip arranged by Chamäleon Theatre. 

Zena's Suitcase
Zena's Suitcase

Zena Goldman is a UK based travel, family & lifestyle blogger who left her 9-5 job behind in the not-for-profit sector to follow her creative dreams and enjoy a more flexible family life. She began writing Zena’s Suitcase in 2011 and shares the holidays and adventures she goes on with (and without) her 2 young daughters. She wishes her son would join them more often but he’s carving out his own dreams now and enjoying university life.

Since beginning Zena’s Suitcase she has worked with a number of brands and also has a regular monthly feature in the ASDA Good Living Magazine feature, ‘Ask The Expert’ where she shares helpful parenting tips. In 2018 she was also a finalist in the prestigious BIBs Awards for Social Media.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. MARGARET gallagher
    April 22, 2017 / 1:55 pm

    It’s a place I’d love to see for myself
    So much of what we take for granted is because of this historic place

  2. Michelle L
    April 23, 2017 / 2:33 am

    Id love to see this in person, what great pictures!

  3. Lorna Ledger
    April 23, 2017 / 12:28 pm

    Wow. You have really captured the spirit! Love the food! Like the bed buggy thing too haha! x

  4. April 24, 2017 / 7:03 am

    Ahh, Berlin, one of the most historic places on Earth. I really love your pictures, they are very well captured. And also the place where the mark of the former Berlin Wall is spectacular! I just read about the Berlin Wall a couple of days ago and seeing this picture somehow gives me a nostalgic feeling…
    Daniel recently posted…Postcards From Berlin: What I Did In 24 HoursMy Profile

  5. Jayne Sullivan
    April 27, 2017 / 9:48 pm

    My favourite city. I have visited the city twice. I would love to visit there again some day !

  6. John Jewett
    May 2, 2017 / 10:38 am

    I have been looking at short breaks in Berlin so might well be going in next few weeks

  7. May 13, 2017 / 4:28 pm

    I went to Berlin as a teenager (so long long time ago ha ha) and I’ve wanted to see it again for ages now. It is ages gorgeous place and many of my friends love visiting it and comment what a fun place it is.

  8. John Jewett
    May 15, 2017 / 12:13 pm

    I think it is the type of cith i would like to visit tbh

More About This UK Travel Blog

Whether you are looking for travel tips to make the most of your next cruise holiday or you need UK travel ideas we’ve got you covered on Zena’s Suitcase UK travel blog.  We started sharing our holiday and travel reviews in 2013, so if you can’t find the travel, family or lifestyle blog above you are after make sure you head over to the search bar to find what you need.  Think of us as one of the best travel blogs brimming with ideas to get you out and about with and without the kids.