Are there any other World War 2 sites or Hitler sites like Berchtesgaden, maybe in France, or western Germany or Belgium, if I didn't want to go as far as Salzburg?
Just to clarify what you're asking. Are you looking for specifically sites in France, Germany or Belgium that are Hitler related,headquarters, homes, that type of thing? Or just WW II sites in general? It would also help to know what areas you're traveling to.
Hi, As pointed out above, there are a ton of sites depending on how willing you are to track them down and specifically what you're looking for aside from the type of things listed above. There are battlefield sites, military cemeteries, memorial cemeteries, WW II buiding sites, museums of events, memorial museums, museum of weapons. German Army military HQ in Normandy, etc. "...Hitler sites like Berchtesgaden...?" There are two Hitler sites in Munich both of which are close to each other...the Feldherrnhalle and the Odeonplatz.
Cynthia, I agree with the others - some clarification of your question would be really helpful! Where are you going to be travelling, and what type of sites are you interested in? If you "don't want to go as far as Salzburg", WHERE will you be? Cheers!
Yes, please explain what you mean by "Hitler" sites. Do you mean buildings associated with the Third Reich in general, or sites that have a particular connection to Adolf Hitler, the man himself? And where will you be on your trip. In general, the remaining legacy of the Nazi period is notable for what is absent, not necessarily in the remains of buildings or monuments, although some of these survive in various forms. For example, in the beforementioned Odeonsplatz, the Nazi memorial that formerly sat here was smashed after the war. Only a small plaque honoring the policemen who died resisting the aborted Nazi Putsch of the 1920s hints at what once stood there. Often, if a building with a close association with the Third Reich survived the war intact, they may now reside in private ownership and not generally open to the public. For example, the castle complex that was actually known as the "Eagle's Nest" near Frankfurt (the more well-known Kehlsteinhaus in Berchtesgaden was named the "Eagle's Nest" by American and British troops, not the Germans) still survives, but as a private residence. No visitors allowed. The closest thing I can think of to a "Hitler" site in Belgium would be the Royal Museum of Military History in Brussels, which has a massive collection of material from both world wars.
In Hannover there's a Nazi monument next to an artificial beach created by the Nazis for the public.
Tracesofwar.com will let you look at almost any location and it will tell you what is there related to WW II.
Lots of small villages, towns and so on have a monument in the local cemetery listing those that fell in battle from the town. Often the number of names on the monument is painfully large for small villages. I wouldn't be as glib referring to "Hitler Sites" to reference World War II in Germany/Western Europe. The Germans certainly want you to visit for more than just "Hitler Sites".
Adding to what Jeff wrote. Adding further to the pain, often you see clusters of people with the same last name on these monuments. Devestating for the village and even more so for the families. War sucks.
Don't forget about Dachau being on the NW end of Munich. We took our 12 year old daughter there, and it made quite an impression. She especially like the Anne Frank Haus in Amsterdam. The Germans have not really paraded their military history to the public, as it's not something they're proud of. There should be more WWII sites than there are. Look close, and you can see memorials in small towns for 15 people here and 19 people there that met their deaths.
My relatives arrived at Ellis Island Thanksgiving Day, 1938 on the very last passenger ship bound for the U.S. out of Germany. The Gestapo were chasing the father around Dresden two nights before departure. Many with tickets on that ship never made it on board. Our relatives beat the odds, and it was truly a miracle they made it on that ship in Hamburg. The grandmother left behind was euthanized by her personal doctor rather than go into "the system."
Cynthia, if you are a fan of the series " Band of Brothers", Belgium is quite fascinating; the Liege/Bastogne areas. Numerous small Museums with a lot of WWII memorabilia. Use of a car with good GPS is recommended. If you haven't gone to this sites Graffiti Wall, Rick has 2 topics, Holocaust Memorials and World War Battlefields; this might also be helpful.
I would suggest if you want to visit "Hitler sites" you go to some of the American cemetaries. You can find a list of them on the American Battle Monuments Commission page: www.abmc.gov/cemetaries.
look at www.thirdreichruins.com/
Cynthia, To put it another way, are you particularily interested in seeing the memorials, sites, museums pertaining mainly to one country on the war...USA, France, Britain, German, Canadian, Soviet? In France every town/city/ village has its memorial often with names of the town's residents who perished in the war. One poignant site I saw was in Compiegne, not far the site of the 1918 Armistice is the site of Deportation. In Germany are numerous military and historical museums that show the war experience, Koblenz, Berlin-Karlshorst, Fürstenwalde (south of Berlin), Seelow east of Berlin, Deutsches Museum in Munich (that one is sanitized)...just to cite a few. Both in France and Germany it's a lot easier if you have a car to get at these places, esp when they are in the outlying areas. If you're going to be in western Germany, go to the lower Rhine area to Kleves. Both the British and German war cemeteries are there...the Reichswald. Basically, it comes down to what you want see specifically and how much energy you want to expend to get there. How much time do you have on this trip?
If you are in Paris , go to Pere Lachaise cemetery . In addition to the myriad things to see there ,be sure to see the memorials to the victims of the camps . Particularly moving is the one dedicated to Mauthausen . If you know the story of that horrible place , the memorial will reduce you to tears . If you are in the countryside somewhat in the vicinity of Limoges , visit the martyr village of Oradour sur Glane .