I went on a little trip to Germany, which I previously mentioned in my last blogpost. I didn’t want to squeeze everything into one single post, as it would have been beyond my personal content limit, I decided to tell you about my time in Berlin in a separate post. In addition, my stay in Berlin was different to the the one in Hamburg as I got to meet my lovely friends from exchange again! Yay to Australia-Germany-Austria Reunion! :)
The day of arrival doesn’t really count as day 1 as Carina and I only checked-in, ate burgers at the restaurant next door and had a relaxed evening. So on our proper first day we met my Australian friend Courtney at the hostel and went straight to a bakery to get coffee & breakfast & to catch up a bit. Then we headed over to the German Historical Museum and spent a couple of hours walking around in the huge exhibition on… German history. It was very fascinating – especially for people interested in World War II and its aftermath.
After that we headed back to the hostel to meet the rest of the crew – Lisa from Germany and her boyfriend Christoph :) Unfortunately, Carina’s health wasn’t the best so she stayed at the hostel for the remaining day. The rest went out for delicious and relatively cheap burritos at Dolores and spent our evening at the Christmas Market at Alexanderplatz.
As Lisa’s boyfriend has to have at least on piece of cake per day, we went to a nice place and had a few pieces each. Actually, we only ordered two “taster” plates, where there was supposed to be an assortment of small pieces so you can try a few different cakes, but every piece was the size of a normal piece of cake. So we had 8 pieces for 4 persons. Way too much cake! But delicious and worth the money (and kind of cheap because of the size and everything). In the evening we went on a Pub Crawl to see a few different pubs and just have fun.
On day 2 Carina was finally feeling a bit better again, we all had breakfast and went to the Brandenburger Gate and the Reichstag. The architecture around the Platz der Republik was really impressive!
While traveling during exchange we enjoyed going on free Walking Tours and I’ve continued doing so on other city trips as well as I think it is:
a. a good way to see nice places of the city,
b. you get to hear nice stories about the buildings/places (not the usual historical stuff, but real people-stuff),
c. you sometimes get to know people,
d. you can ask the tour guide to give you pieces of advice on where to have lunch/dinner/whatever that are not known to tourists, and
e. you can pay whichever amount you want or even give them nothing in case you were unsatisfied with the tour.
Besides, you can always leave the tour whenever you want to.
On our three hour walking tour (which was Sandemans New Berlin Free Tour) we got to see the Holocaust Memorial, Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, Hitler’s Bunker, Gendarmenmarkt and many more. We saw very beautiful, very thought-provoking buildings.
Unfortunately, the weather was not the best, it was very windy and very very very cold :( However, the tour was really interesting and we got to see many interesting places.After our tour we had dinner at an Italian place, went to Potsdamer Platz to have a look at this Christmas market and enjoyed a cup of Glühwein.
Berlin was full of Christmas decorations as well! Beautiful but slightly too much for my taste :D
On our last day in Berlin we had an enormous breakfast at a place near the East Side Gallery. It was definitely worth our money, but unfortunately, I forgot the name of the place :( After stuffing our bellies with delicious breakfast treats, we went to the East Side Galleries to find out that it was being renovated at the moment, so most of the ‘gallery’ was behind barriers :( However, we still got a few nice shots and got to see interesting & beautiful art.
We also went to KaDeWe – the biggest department store in Europe – to look at all the expensive and non-affordable stuff ;) Later, Carina and I went back to Alexander Platz to have a last look at the Christmas market there, while the rest of the gang went to the DDR museum. We met later again at our hostel where we had to say goodbye to everyone as Courtney had to catch her train, Lisa and her boyfriend a bus, Carina and I a plane.
Berlin is a beautiful city, I definitely want to go there again (when it’s a bit warmer maybe?!). I also recommend anyone to go on a free walking tour and to have a look at the German Historical Museum, to learn more about Germany’s history. I really enjoyed my time in Berlin with my friends from exchange. :)