After arriving in Berlin (from Barcelona), the most distinct difference was the weather. Sunny VS moderately depressing. Our entire stay in Berlin (or rather Germany and Austria) was filled with intermittent rainfalls that made travelling a lazy one. I just wanted to curl in bed and hide away from the wet weather. In any case, we were quite fortunate to have met a sweet Argentinian couple at the train station from the airport who offered to share their group train ticket they received from a random stranger with us. Yay, to a ‘free’ train ride! Once we arrived at our stop, it started pouring rain as we were dragging our luggage to the accommodation. Nice one. Fortunately, the place was not far from the station, although we couldn’t find the entrance into the building -.-
After we finally settled in, we explored the area (mainly to hunt for the laundromat) before heading to the Berlin Dungeon where we had our tickets booked. Waffeleisen literally had one of the better lemon (with basil) sorbet, amongst those I’ve tasted during this trip. It was superbly refreshing. Berlin also boast the best chicken kebab I had eaten. It was cheap (€3.50), flavourful, filling and the shop was extremely generous with their toppings. It was simply phenomenal.
Mustafa Demir’s Gemüse Kebap: Warschauer Str. 27 a, 10243 Berlin, Germany –
Nearest station: Warschauer station (S-bahn)
Just look at that goodness O.O *salivates at home*
We then walked towards the Berlin Dungeon from the East Side Gallery. It was a long (3.2km), tiring and fast-paced walk (slightly less than 30 mins) as we attempted to view the wall and reached the attraction by our booking time. It was so surreal to witness paintings that I’ve only seen in my exam papers coming to life! Just behind the gallery was also a floating lounge/hostel, which offered such a unique travel accommodation for visitors. Although, it’s definitely not the place for me because I can get motion sickness on a stationary boat. Can you imagine, waking every ungodly hour because of a tummy upset?! Haha.
Simply loving the little details in the traffic lights that makes Berlin, Berlin.
Unfortunately (or fortunately), we were ‘late’ (though we arrived on the dot) since we were supposed to reach at least 10-15 minutes before out stipulated tour timings. Thus, we wasted our effort rushing there as we couldn’t join the tour. But luckily, the kind staff at the Berlin Dungeon were very accommodating.They allowed us to switch our booking to the next day. This meant that 2 of our travel companions whose flight was delayed could now come along for the ride.
A short review of this tour, it’s definitely NOT scary. It was a semi-humour filled one (with a ton of sexual innuendos thrown in). So if you don’t get the innuendos, you’ll definitely not get the joke. It was definitely uninformative with regard to Berlin’s history. The story plot for the different scenes were also quite haphazardly joined together and there were no continuation of the storyline. This, alongside my inability to comprehend what the actors/actresses were saying, contributed to my confusion. If you’re bored, you can check this place out, but it’s not worth the cost and time, imo.
Since we missed the tour slot, my friend and I had time to spare as we awaited the arrival of our travel companions. We roamed about the museum island (didn’t enter any of the museums) then headed to the Berlin Cathedral, where there was a ton of people just chilling to the music on the field, in front of the cathedral. We also sat down to admire the music and rest our sore feet (one of the more European activities we partook in, lol) before we had to rush back to the apartment.
The following day, after heading to Primark and the Berlin Dungeon, we tried out currywurst from curry 61. Simply put, the curry was too salty for me. I think most Singaporeans would prefer a spicier and less salty version of the curry to better suit our palate. It was followed by a rose gelato, where I chose 5 different flavours to ‘construct’ my rose. Although, the mixture of flavours left my tastebuds extremely confused. I should have stuck to 3 (max.), I was simply too greedy, haha. The gelato was nothing note-worthy, it was simply for Instagram purposes.
Curry 61: Oranienburger Str. 6, 10178 Berlin, Germany
Amorino Gelato Al Naturale: Oranienburger Strasse 1, 10178 Berlin, Germany
Thereafter, we headed down to Brandenburg Tor, where there was a protest going on, before walking over to the Holocaust memorial ground and the Reichstag. The memorial ground had such a conflicting vibe going on, which varied greatly from the message it intended. On one hand, it’s a memorial for those who died in WWI, on the other, you’ve tourists sitting, running and laughing about the area as they snapped a picture of the place. It felt very disrespectful to those who lost their lives during the war. Or perhaps it’s just me.
After those places, we headed down to the Berlin Wall monument, where a part of the wall was preserved and largely untouched by graffiti. It was also where the Topography of Terror, an exhibition aisle was located. It provided a very interesting insight to the wall and Berlin’s history. Definitely worth checking this place out. Located just round the corner was Checkpoint Charlie and since we were there, why not?
We rounded off the last part of our stay in the Berlin with a visit to Tiergarten, based on the recommendation of the Argentinian couple we met earlier in the trip. Although the place was huge, it was definitely not the kind of attraction most Asians would like. So we didn’t enjoyed it and left after a short walk to head back to the accommodation. The victory column was also located just next to the Tiergarten. Naturally, I didn’t forget to grab a B&W photo form the photoautomat. Although there was a bunch of gagster-type guys hovering about the photoautomat, but it was in the vicinity of a train station, so there was still people passing by, which made things safer. Till the next post, bye!