As the capital of Germany, the setting of the hard-fought Battle of Berlin, and the home of the Führerbunker underground shelter where Hitler committed suicide, Berlin was the site of many key events in world history. Here are just a few of the places in and around the city that are closely associated with the Third Reich and World War II.
An emblem of the city, Berlin’s Reichstag parliament building dates back to 1894. Though it was severely damaged by a fire in 1933 and remained unused during the Nazi era, it nevertheless remained a big target during World War II. The famous image of the raised Soviet flag on its roof serves as a symbol of the Red Army’s victory at the Battle of Berlin.
Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp
Situated in Oranienburg, just north of Berlin, Sachsenhausen was one of the first concentration camps built by the Nazis. Opened in 1936, it served as a model for later camps. By the time it was liberated in 1945, around 200,000 people had been imprisoned here.
Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (Holocaust Memorial)
Opened in 2005, this somber memorial, designed by American architect Peter Eisenman, consists of thousands of different-size concrete slabs spread across a 4.7-acre (1.9-hectare) site. The memorial is just a few hundred feet away from the site of the Führerbunker—now an nondescript parking lot—where Hitler spent his last days.
Topography of Terror
Set on the site of the former headquarters of the Third Reich and SS Central Command, this museum traces the history of Nazi institutions. A series of indoor and outdoor exhibits collectively recount the plans, atrocities, and crimes hatched by party members at this very location.