The Germany Close Up group pauses by the Binnenalster for a quick photo before continuing on the tour. 
During free time in Hamburg, several GCU group members explored Hamburg’s rich culture and delicious international cuisine. 
On the group’s second full day in Germany, we enjoyed a walking tour of Jewish Berlin-Mitte, once home to the city’s Jewish community. While there aren’t many visible remains of Jewish community in Berlin, in cities all across Germany and Europe, stolpersteine or “stumbling stones” commemorate victims of WWII. The brass stones, incorporated into the cobblestone of the winding streets and courtyards, name those who were deported and sent to labor or extermination camps throughout Europe. They sit outside of victims’ last freely chosen residence or place of work, and it is the responsibility of the current residents to do the research necessary to receive a stolpersteine. These stones provide a physical place for families of victims to visit and remember even though their homes and storefronts are no more. Today, Jewish Berlin-Mitte is packed with monuments, museums, shops and Jewish history. Pictured at right is German guide Anne Lepper.