Berlin is the capital city and seat of government of united Germany. Reunification in 1990 ensured that Berlin began to emerge from the ravages of post-war Europe as an exciting and dynamic force in the German political and economic arena. 'New Berlin' is at the heart of commercial growth, with many corporations basing their headquarters in this international metropolis. Major construction projects are underway to redevelop areas like Potsdamer Platz, which already has over 120 shops, 20 cinemas (including 1 IMAX) and a musical theatre. Stylish Kurfürstendamm is a 3.5 km (2 mile) boulevard filled with superb hotels, fashionable restaurants, cafés and boutiques.
Although much of Berlin's historical architecture was devastated during the last months of the war, many treasures survived. The Brandenburg Gate, symbol of the city, embraces the reunification of East and West Berlin. The Victory Column, Schloss Charlottenburg and the restored Reichstag building are fascinating examples of Berlin's illustrious past.
A section of the Berlin Wall remains as a monument to the division of the city and the Checkpoint Charlie Museum recounts the story of the wall and the many escape attempts that are associated with it.
Berlin boasts numerous museums, galleries and concert halls. Museum Island, The Hamburger Bahnhof and the Cultural Forum exemplify its cultural diversity. Areas of natural beauty are plentiful, the Tiergarten, Unter den Linden and the Berlin Zoo confirm that Berlin's reputation as a beautiful, energetic and inspiring city is well deserved.
For more information on what to see and do in Berlin, visit our guide to Berlin's landmarks. If you are looking for a tour in Berlin, why not try this walking tour of the famous city?
Click on the links below for a city map of Berlin and a five-day weather forecast.