Berlin’s bunkers

Berlin certainly has a fascinating history, above and below ground, as a tour of a Second World War bunker revealed. This was an interesting counterpart to the Churchill war rooms in London, which I visited just a couple I weeks ago.

The bunker was built using existing underground structures, nestled between tunnels of the U-Bahn system. It was intended as a temporary air raid shelter, rather than a permanent residence. Several rooms inside would safely house a few dozen people each, in cramped and unsanitary conditions, while bombs rained down from above. Each room would only have about 2 hours air supply, on the assumption that any air raids would be over quickly.

It seems the Nazis were too cocky to provide adequate shelters, believing themselves to be invincible. Hermann Göring went as far as to say that if an enemy bomber reached the Ruhr, his name was Meyer (a Jewish name). Naturally, after the Allies started to bomb Berlin, he received numerous letters beginning, ‘Dear Mr Mayer’!

Unfortunately, photography was not permitted, but official publicity photos can be found here.

In the afternoon, we checked out the Berliner Dom, the city cathedral, and were treated to spectacular views at the top.

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