Even more than Bratvurst and Berghain: You need to visit Berlin

Ich bin ein Berliner? Well no, we’re not doughnuts, but every History student wants a chance to be in Berlin.

It’s Black Friday (yet another capitalist event that spread from the USA quicker than the common cold), you’ve probably had a million emails telling you to spend every last ounce of your overdraft in the sales. HistSoc say forget that and save your money for a trip you won’t forget. We’ve reached post-essay season maybe exams and future assessments are in the back of your minds – why not give yourself something to look forward to and get yourself a ticket for the HistSoc trip to Berlin. The trip includes staying in Mitte (literally the centre of Berlin),  a big social, a bar crawl, walking tours and, best of all we, get free breakfast! Check the Facebook event for even more info.

As a fellow student I really get how that this is the season where your bank balance quickly shifts from your friend to your enemy, but luckily you only need to put a deposit down at first rather than the whole sum. If you’re really worried about money but don’t want to miss out, why not ask for a bit of cash from family as an early Christmas present.

If you’re not convinced keep reading, because anyone who’s been on a HistSoc trip before knows you won’t want to miss out.

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Berlin is one of the most culturally and historically enriched cities in Europe. It was the centre of the Nazi regime. As history students we believe it’s vital to understand the past if we are to understand the present. Now could not be a more important time to understand the rise and force of Fascism in Europe. Museums such as the Topography of Terror are key to helping us explore a part of our continents history that we should never forget. And of course, every history student needs to see the Berlin Wall – I don’t think I need to explain. But these are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what Berlin has to offer to us history nerds, you best buy a place on the trip to discover the rest. Going with HistSoc means you won’t have to drag unwilling mates round historic sites, everyone else will probably be even more eager than you (although some may still be dragging their feet a bit in true HistSoc trip hangover style). 

You can get a taste for interrailing, or revisit the nostalgia of your classic student summer. As an Arts and Humanities student does your degree really count if you don’t cross over the channel to mainland Europe at some point? Berlin is an interrailing favourite representing where Eastern Europe meets West. Many view it as an extremely liberal, socially progressive and tolerant city. There is so much to see and explore – loads of art galleries, museums, beautiful castles and even lakes which are kind of like beaches to German.

Berlin’s rich culture is obvious in it’s nightlife. It’s a centre for dance and electronic music lovers, think it doesn’t get edgier than Leeds? Think again. But not to worry, Berlin has a diverse nightlife, not all EDM. We’ll help show you the best of what Berlin has to offer – One night we’ll be giving you free entry to a club and another we’ll be doing a bar crawl.Trust me HistSoc socials abroad are something you really don’t want to miss out on.

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HistSoc ready for a bar crawl in Budapest, January 2016

Even the people are a reason to visit. Much like a Northerner at the bus stop, many Berliner’s are some of the friendliest and most helpful people you will meet abroad. It’s up for dispute, and apparently they aren’t always so welcoming in the winter but lucky we’ll be there in April then! Strangers often help you out at train stations (their ticket systems are very different to ours) and other places you might be looking a little lost and confused. Not that you’ll be alone, you’ll be with all your coursemates and what better way to consolidate those friendships with one big History holiday. 

And finally to to make it even better, fun fact: for those of you dog-lovers, you’re in luck as Berlin has over 11,000 of them. They’re allowed most places in public, so you’re sure to see some of Germany’s finest.

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Pupper admiring the historic Brandenburg Gate

 

Tickets for the international trip go fast, so make sure you have your membership and get your passport and card details ready for the 30th November!

Chloe Sparks, Academic Sec

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