Berlin 2 — Running in Treptower Park, where History hits you
Second discovery ride, still in Berlin. I’m a Parisian traveller, and my English isn’t perfect. Welcome in that new story !
At the end of Februrary, we were in Berlin with my girlfriend to celebrate her birthday and ours.
It’s a place we both love, and it was a great pleasure to be there for a few days, diving into the local culture and meeting awesome people.
But as I’m a runner, I felt the urge to go for a run or two (It was two ; the first one was in Templhofer Feld, related here.)
We were leaving a wednesday, and I planned to go for a run (in Treptower Park, indeed) on the Tuesday morning.
Bonus : on the monday evening, while we were eating in a cute asian fusion restaurant, it started snowing !
It never really snow in Paris, so I was excited as a kid seing snow for the first time ! (Or, excited as a Labrador, according to my girlfriend.)
And the next morning, the city was covered with several centimers of snow.
Berlin was like frozen in its white mantle, silent.
This particular atmosphere was perfect to go and discover the greatest war memorial I have ever seen in my life.
Treptower Park and the Memorial
This huge park (Berlin has several huge parks) is in the South-East of the city Center (which would be Alexanderplatz), along the Spree.
As we were staying in Neukölln, it was only a few kilometers run to go there, perfect for running my usual 10km.
First, a little bit of history of this Soviet Memorial
740.000 soviet soldiers died during the conquest of Germany between 1944 and 1945.
20.000 only to conquer Berlin.
4.800 of them are buried into this memorial.
It was built between June 1946 and May 1949.
The marble and the stones used for the construction come largely from the new chancellery wanted by Hitler and destroyed in 1945.
“Ewiger Ruhm den Helden, die für Freiheit und Unabhängigkeit der sozialistischen Heimat gefallen sind”
Which means :
“Eternal fame the hero who has fallen for freedom and independence of the socialist homeland”
Welcome in Treptower Park Memorial. The Motherland salutes you.
An incredible path to the heart of the Memorial.
My pictures weren’t that great to capture the greatness of this memorial, so I searched for a few better ones.
Two gigantic lowered flags, of red granite, guarded by kneeling soldiers.
The one on the left is aged, the one on the right is younger. In parade uniform and armed, they pay tribute to their comrades and keep their graves.
The view I had after passing the Guards :
Two rows of eight sarcophagi represent each of the sixteen republics which then constituted the Soviet Union.
At the end of the axis stands the bronze statue of a Red Army soldier (sculptor Yevgeny Voutchetitch) who carries a child on one arm, points the ground with his sword and treads a broken swastika on his foot.
The child symbolizes the innocent people who can hope for a better future in the arms of the rescuer.
(Couldn’t catch this statue properly, so I searched for a good pic)
From the back, with the snow :
The park is 10 hectares in total. Here is an aerial view to realize it :
Needless to say, the solemn atmosphere and gigantism of the place, with the effects of the snow covering everything, calls for reception and silence, remembering the great events of history that took place in Berlin.
End of the run by the Spree
After leaving the park quietly, I headed to the banks of the Spree to admire it frozen and breathe the (quite) fresh air.
And then got back to Neukölln, passing in front of lovely wooden barracks.
At the end, I ran 11km in 1:01:30
Not my best time, not my worst either, knowing that I sometimes got a little lost and that it was less than 0 degrees.
Oh, and my fingers were so cold that sometimes I stopped my GPS by mistake, which made 3 races instead of one :
But I had the chance to take this picture : my favorite of all my stay in Berlin !
Neukölln, Kreuzberg, Friedrichstain. My three favorites neighborhoods in Berlin.
What is yours ? :)
Next discovery run : I don’t know yet, surely in Paris, to uncover my favorite running spots.
If you want to run with me in Paris, please comment :)
If you know a place where I should run, please tell me :)
If you think this story is worth reading, hit that 💚 please !
(And if you think not, sorry for your time)
From one runner to the others,
I’m a Parisian guy, who loves running and travelling.
With two friends, I created Welcom’ to Paris, a platform to help travellers to meet Parisians and explore the real Paris with them.
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