90-day travel ban: How I became an illegal alien in Germany

When I flew from Toronto to Berlin in January, I had no idea I was breaking the law. 

My family came to visit me in Germany back in 2014. At the time, I had been living in a city called Braunschweig for two years. I officially left Braunschweig in late 2015.

 

On the same day I found out, I booked a last minute flight from Frankfurt to Toronto.

I had less than 48 hours to pack my life into a suitcase before I flew home. Home home.

Even though I’d just been home! I’d spent three weeks in Toronto over the Christmas holidays and I flew back to Germany via Berlin in early January.

I had only been back across the pond for a month before I was told I had to leave.

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Third Reich Tourism in Germany

The British have long been fascinated by Nazi Germany. UK tour companies even offer package tours to Germany that visit sites connected to Hitler and the Third Reich. In a journey across the country from the Bavarian Alps to the Baltic Sea, I follow a group of British travellers on one of these tours to find out whether a fascination for Nazi Germany really is the reason why some of the tour members have come.

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A Trip up to Eagle’s Nest

After joining a Leger Holidays tour group on their visit to Eagle’s Nest in southern Germany in June, it was plain to see why so many visitors flock to Hitler’s former holiday retreat.

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What is today a seasonal restaurant and beer garden with sweeping views of the Bavarian Alps was actually a gift the National Socialist party gave to Hitler on his 50th birthday.

Perched atop a rocky outcrop overlooking the town of Berchtesgaden close to the Austrian border, Eagle’s Nest is just one of the various “iconic and infamous” sites included in the itinerary of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, a tour which examines the “dark charisma of Adolf Hitler.” The group I had the pleasure of joining consisted mainly of British pensioners who all seemed to have one thing in common: a healthy fascination for history.

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Germany: The Migrant Crisis

As hundreds of asylum seekers continue to enter Germany each day, the country faces more and more challenges. The question is, how well is Germany coping with the migrant crisis within its borders? 

Cut-off date: 1 December 2015

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People often queue for days at the central registration centre for refugees and asylum seekers in Berlin’s Moabit district. Photo: REUTERS

 

He was sick of waking up in the middle of the night to music blasting from someone else’s cell phone. He could no longer bear living with a hundred others in a crowded gymnasium. He hated being unable to work and the resultant boredom. Most of all, he was frustrated by the uncertainty of whether his family would be able to join him and fearful for their safety.

“I would rather die in my homeland than stay here,” Murad Kulli told Der Tagesspiegel before he left.

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