The Final Days Of Hitler’s City
Discover the drama and tragedy of the Battle of Berlin – the bloody ‘Race to the Reichstag’ – the final reckoning with the Nazi regime and its desperate defenders.
Retrace the route of the Red Army advance into the historic central district – from the arrival of the first Soviet troops on Berlin’s outskirts to the surrender of the city and final Nazi capitulation on May 8th 1945 in the suburb of Karlshorst.
Fought over seventeen days in 1945 the Battle of Berlin would be the largest confrontation between Allied and Axis forces to take place on German soil – with some 2.5 million Soviet troops descending on Hitler’s capital to fight a battle that would bring about the defeat of National Socialism and end of WWII in Europe.
After almost four years of bitter conflict and horrifying loss of life, the forces of the Soviet Union finally reached the ‘Gates of Berlin’ in January 1945 – with over six million men and women in uniform bearing down on central Europe and threatening a final confrontation between the Weltanschauung of National Socialism and Stalinist Soviet Communism.
The battle that would seal the fate of Nazi Germany – dubbed the Berlin Strategic Offensive Operation by the Soviets – would arrive on Berlin’s streets on April 20th, as Soviet long range artillery began pounding the city into a disfigured and crippled mess. Perfectly timed to coincide with Adolf Hitler’s 56th birthday. A further twelve days of brutal urban fighting would take place before the surrender of the city on May 2nd.
The result would be a decisive Soviet victory – the death of Adolf Hitler and the coup de grâce to National Socialism. This bitterly contested battle, however, would leave Berlin almost unrecognisable to visitors fortunate enough to have witnessed the German capital in its pre-war splendour. A city that still today bears the scars of the street-by-street, house-by-house, cellar-by-cellar fighting that would become emblematic of the most symbolic battle of the war.
This tour is an opportunity to discover the story of the Battle of Berlin through the eyes of the defenders, the Soviet personnel tasked with attacking the city, but also the millions of civilians who would share the burden.
Explore what remains of this urban battlefield from the former Nazi government quarter and Defence Sector Zitadelle to the site of Adolf Hitler’s Führerbunker and command centre for the last days of his life. Hear the stories of the reluctant commander of the Berlin Defence Area who narrowly escaped execution for treason, the fanatical resistance from French and Swedish SS fighters, and the tragedy of young boys and old men forced to act as cannon fodder to blunt the Soviet assault.
Visit what remains of the major and minor locations of this epic battle; from the ‘first liberated house in Berlin’ to the former SS/Gestapo headquarters, site of the Rote Burg police station, Tempelhof airport, and the Spittelmarkt that would become chokepoints over the course of the brutal fighting.
Follow the path taken by the remaining members of Hitler’s entourage in escaping through the frontlines, the gauntlet-like frontal assault that Red Army troops carried out while fighting through the current government district and learn about the controversy surrounding the iconic photo of those same Red Army troops raising the Soviet flag over the main Soviet objective – the Reichstag building.
More than 80,000 Soviet soldiers would die before this battle was over.
This tour includes access to two huge Soviet memorials – Treptower Park and the Tiergarten – that were established after the war to commemorate these dead and concludes with a visit to the German Russia Museum in Karlshorst, where less than a week after the end of the Battle of Berlin the instrument of surrender of Nazi Germany was signed.
Beyond visiting the locations where the Battle of Berlin took place we will also discuss the myths and realities of this era-ending engagement, such as:
And much more…
750€ for a 6 hour private van tour – maximum 6 person group
includes 19% VAT, guide fee, booking fee, admin fee, transportation and driver costs, and mandatory German tourism insurances
(*prices in non-Euro currency calculated based on market rate at time of booking)
All vehicles are recent model Mercedes Benz V-class/Volkswagen Caravelle vans suitable for up to six people.
For larger groups we also provide mini-vans and buses (up to 60 people).
Member of the Berlin Guides Association – Bündnis Berliner Stadtführer e.V.
Our payments are securely processed using Stripe/PayPal invoicing – all major credit cards accepted.
All tours conducted in accordance with current German government Covid-19 precautions and guidelines.
All reservations can be cancelled via email up to one month before the first tour date – subject to a 25% cancellation fee.
Our tours can start whenever and wherever is best for you. Whether you’re an early bird or late sleeper.
Whether you prefer to start at your accommodation or elsewhere.
Have questions? We have answers.
Arrange a totally free 30 minute video call (Zoom/Skype/WhatsApp) to discuss your time in Berlin and how we can help make it exceptional.
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