Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin
Attractions | 08.10.2019
Checkpoint Charlie is a landmark quite atypical for Berlin. It is not a work of architectural art, on the contrary, it is just an ordinary wooden box. But, if we talk about Checkpoint Charlie, its historical context comes first – from this point of view, it falls among the most historically significant places in Europe of the 20th century.
About Checkpoint Charlie
In 1961, at the peak of the cold war, the Soviet side decided to build the Berlin wall – a concrete fence on the border of the FRG and the GDR. Checkpoint Charlie is the name of the checkpoint at the wall on Friedrichstraße, in the heart of the city. Checkpoint Charlie became a symbol of the German people divided by former allies for almost 30 years, until the fall of the wall in November 1989. The original construction of the checkpoint was removed in 1990, and later replaced with a copy.
Checkpoint Charlie is located in the immediate vicinity of Kochstraße subway station. The Checkpoint neighbor with the Berlin Wall Museum. Museum hours – 9:00 a.m to 10:00 p.m. everyday.
In addition to the Berlin Wall Museum, nearby the checkpoint you can find the Trabi Museum (dedicated to cars popular in the GDR – Trabant) and the 360-panorama of Assisi, illustrating life on both sides of the wall in the 1980s.
Do you know?
  • "Charlie" is not a proper name, but a code word in the NATO phonetic alphabet corresponding to the Latin letter C (the other two checkpoints on the border of the FRG and the GDR were called "Alpha" and "Bravo"). The Soviet side called the checkpoint as "Checkpoint Friedrichstraße".
  • In 1961, during the wall construction, there was one of the key episodes of the cold war, comparable in its intensity to the Caribbean crisis. Soviet and American tanks stood opposite each other for almost a day, ready to attack. Extra negotiations between Kennedy and Khrushchev were successful and the incident was resolved without fire.
  • No wonder that Checkpoint Charlie is a regular contributor to cold war fiction. Events of both Soviet and Western spy novels and movies unfolded in the vicinity of the checkpoint. Agent 007 also visited this place – in the movie of 1983 – "Octopussy", James Bond performed by Roger Moore crosses the border through Checkpoint Charlie.
  • No wonder that Checkpoint Charlie is a regular contributor to cold war fiction. Events of both Soviet and Western spy novels and movies unfolded in the vicinity of the checkpoint. Agent 007 also visited this place – in the movie of 1983 – "Octopussy", James Bond performed by Roger Moore crosses the border through Checkpoint Charlie.
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