About The DDR Museum
One of Berlin’s newest sites, the DDR Museum examines what life was like within the former German Democratic Republic, and provides an incredibly vivid look into this 40-year period. The museum is a wholly interactive experience, wherein visitors enter a model of a GDR estate.
Through impressive interactive exhibitions, the DDR Museum throws visitors into the years of the German Democratic Republic, which existed primarily between 1949 and 1990.
Life in the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War was vastly different to the rest of Germany. The West in particular was heavily occupied by the US military, and the Soviet forces felt it necessary to counter this with a state-owned and run country of their own.
Surrounded by wall of security – both metaphoric and sometimes real – the GDR and its inhabitants were cut off from the rest of the world. This allowed the Stasi to watch over its citizens without interruption. This spying went on throughout the Eastern Bloc’s reign, until its economic collapse and the democratic mass movement that finalised its demise.
The museum actively encourages visitors to touch and experience the exhibitions, in a way that few others do. Visitors can stroll through a typical concrete-slabbed housing estate, into the buildings that are bursting with relics and real models from the lives of those who grew up and lived during this time. You can see first-hand how the Socialist ideologies of the Stasi were conveyed through real television shows and movies, read the diary of a GDR citizen, and even take a simulated ride in one of the beloved ‘Trabi’ cars.
The museum accurately reflects both a fondness for the culture that this period created, as well as emphasising the sinister side of life under the piercing gaze of the SED.