When Berlin was divided, Checkpoint Charlie was the most famous of the border crossings between the eastern and western halves of the city. It was here that Allied soldiers registered before crossing over into the Soviet-controlled sectors. Thanks to its appearances in Cold War thrillers from Bond movies to John Le Carré novels, it has become a symbol of that era in the city’s, and world’s, history. A small museum nearby includes a replica of the guardhouse that once stood here.
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Probably one of the most "touristy" things you can do in Berlin, Checkpoint Charlie is still a must-see if you are in Berlin to understand the history of the Cold War.
The checkpoint itself is nothing to write home about. It is manned by two actors and certainly is not authentic. But, the area around Checkpoint Charlie is worth exploring. There are pieces of the Berlin Wall to touch and feel, an easy to navigate exhibition on the history of the checkpoint and is across the street from one of the must-try Currywurst stands (I recommend getting your currywurst spicy and with fries).
Walk just a few blocks beyond Checkpoint Charlie and you'll find yourself at the site of what once was the HQ for the SS and where you can walk along a large portion of the Berlin Wall.