Slow Tours around the corners of Berlin you won’t find in the guide books.
Berlin has more to offer than the Rough Guide or Lonely Planet can tell you about, and these tours show you some of the other sides of the city. Visiting the scenes from the book Stealing the Future opens up new perspectives, giving you a taste of the divided Berlin of a quarter-century ago.
The Berlin of the 1990s plays as much of a role in Stealing the Future as any of the human characters: dark, brooding, sometimes sinister, at other times colourful, chaotic and delightful. With these tours you too can visit the squats, factories, military bases and secret police headquarters that the protagonist of the book went to in his search for answers.
Tour 1 – Martin’s Neighbourhood: a short walking tour through the Kiez in Lichtenberg that Martin lived and worked in.
1.5 miles walking, allow at least 1 hour
Tour 2 – Prisons, Factories, Russians and the Stasi: a longer tour (perfect for an afternoon of exploring) involving either cycling or walking plus trams. Visit a few more of the sites that Martin is taken to in his attempts to solve the Maier case.
2 miles walking plus tram rides, or 13 Miles cycling. Allow 4 – 6 hours
2.5 miles walking, allow at least 2 hours
Tour 4 – Tram through the Forest: ride on the tram through the deep forests of Berlin, see where Martin had his secret rendezvous with the KGB major. If you need to escape from the hectic city, want to explore a small Brandenburg town, fancy some watersports or walks in the forest then this is the trip for you.
Variable walking (you choose!), allow at least 2 hours, or make an all day trip of it.
No time for a tour? Have a look at one of my favourite GDR-themed museums
Berlin tour suggestions by other people/sites
- Traces of a border – thoughtful travelogue around where the Berlin Wall once stood.
- Slow Travel Berlin – lots of walking tours around odd corners of the Berlin.
- Digital Cosmonaut – exploring Berlin’s abandoned locations.
- History of the Berlin Wall – various tours (with videos) of historically significant places by RBB (Berlin-Brandenburg public broadcasting service)
- On The Trail of Leipzig’s Communist Past – an audio walking tour of Leipzig (via phone app) by Fiona Rintoul, author of the excellent Leipzig Affair (audio tour cost: $3.99 at time of posting)