For me, Berlin was a city that I had seen only in films. I could dream of its streets while reading books about it.

Finally, I was in Berlin on a business trip last month.

Berlin is not a place that one thinks of and decides to visit at once; however, I really liked this city…

Berlin, which has lived the war ferociously, reminds this with the exhibition on its modern main street with the remaining parts of the bomb-wrecked church. Berlin lived the cold war most intensely and became the Capital after West and East Germany reunited in 1990. It is a glamorous city.

We have heard and seen many stories in the media concerning the time when the city was divided by a wall. Many people tried to escape from the East to the West… Then the fall of the wall and the reaction of the people… Being somebody from a generation who has lived the anxiety of these times, I have found Berlin extremely mystifying.

They have used glass and steel bravely and aesthetically on the front side and the doomed shaped roofs of the buildings, which are architectural masterpieces. Berlin is a very chic metropolis with its old and new buildings, streets and parks. 

The weather was beautiful. When our colleagues whom we met in Berlin said: “You are lucky as the weather is usually still very cold during early spring days”, we felt much happier. In Berlin, winter is very cold and snowy and the people were preparing for Easter holidays. The rabbits and the egg decorations made of chocolate on the pastry shop windows were very nice.

The shops were ready for the season with the fresh pastel colours of spring. The Quartier 206 has taken its place in the biggest shopping centers of Europe "Kaufhaus des Westens" and also "Galleries Lafayette with its classical decoration and the most famous brands of the world.

The German-American Architect Helmut Jahn, and Café Kranzler created the new enchanting modern shopping center Atrium “Kranzler-Eck” with its steel and glass front and historical architecture surviving from the 1950s and with its legendary glass tower.

One must see the architectural masterpiece, Sony Building, constructed also by Helmut Jahn.

Our fellowmen are all around and they work in all sorts of jobs. They are hard working with smiling faces. However, they have adopted themselves well to the environment. The ones we met have behaved, as if they were our hospitable hosts. Berlin is almost an extension of Turkey. There are Turkish restaurants, hairdressers, coffee shops, markets, butchers and taxis. Turks have created a small İstanbul in Berlin.

We heard Turkish-speaking people more than we did German. While we were shopping, we met Germans who greeted us saying “Hello and welcome” in Turkish. There were German girls telling about their Turkish boyfriends and smiling at us in a friendly way…

We stayed at Regent Hotel. It is a nice classical hotel. Its comfort and service are top class.

Kreuzberg, Mitte, Scheunenviertel, Prenzlauer Berg and Tiergarten are the districts worth seeing in this beautifully planned and constructed metropolis.

Reichstag (the Parliament Building), Brandenburg Gate, Unter den Linden Boulevard, Television Tower at Alexanderplatz are the historical buildings worth seeing.

The Russian Embassy; the University of Humbolt square and the Pergamon Museum that we get confronted after passing the river; Breitscheidplatz; Kaiser Wilhelm Church Monument coming on our way suddenly and Kurfürstendamm; Fasanenstrasse and Bleibtreustrasse with its important historical buildings and finally the impressive Gedenkstatte “Berliner Mauer" (Berlin Wall Monument).

Berlin embraces us with its cosmopolitan structure; extraordinary cultural wealth; Island of Museums, cultural inheritance from Prussia; cultural forum; three operas; one philharmonic orchestra; several theaters; concert halls and libraries. 

It is surrounded with so much water that it can be called ‘Venice of the North’. Berlin can also be seen by waterways as the Spree River runs through the city. There are more than 1700 bridges in the city. The Berliners are proud that there are more bridges here than in Venice.

It must be pleasant to discover Berlin with its waterways in a trip during spring or summer when there is a lot of sunshine.

While writing about Berlin, I have strongly felt that this metropolis is very rich from the architectural point of view and that one should visit it with that eye as well.

Coming to the section of our photos:

Kaiser Wilhelm Church Monument… One lives the moments of bombing in this wrecked church!

We immortalized the memory of the street  with the hamburgers we ate at Hard Rock Café.

Brandenburg Gate – this photo is taken from the original website

to Ceylan

March 2005
Tülin Erkaya





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