Berlin

Took a night flight to Berlin Tegel and it is not an impressive sight but onwards, got in a taxi and my driver was making small talk in broken English but I will always remember the quote of the evening “Munchen is racist, but Berlin is Multi-Kulti”. I came to Berlin simply wanting a break from London and I heard that it was an edgy, arty, trendy type of place with a long history. I had also recently finished Neil MacGregor’s Germany – Memories of a Nation, so I was brushed up on my GCSE German and was ready for the city in the morning.

I’ve arrived at least 10 days before Christmas which I’m not a fan of all that unnecessary spending and bulging capitalism but bar humbug….in Germany they do it BIG. Germans love Christmas the streets were lined with decorations, the markets were filled with shoppers. Any way I headed to Potsdam Platz, a soulless modern hive where until I saw the remnants of the Berlin Wall I considered doing a 360 back to the station. Until I ventured a little further up towards a park which was opposite the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe which is next to the Brandenburg Gate. Within minutes everywhere was a sight of importance, I was torn between going down Unter den Linten avenue (which will take you right down to Museum Island, Berlin Cathedral, Marx and Engels Forum, the Rathaus as well as the TV Tower) and exploring the area around the Reichstag.

There is so much to see and explore in Berlin, I can’t even describe all I saw or took part in. Berlin is a place for a great weekend break so try to incorporate the East and the West – like go down to see the Oberbaum Bridge and the East Side Gallery (the actual Berlin Wall), the area was in the midst of development so its worth seeing before the grittiness disappears. In you are into art, you have to see the end galleries and museums. One discovery was the Germany History Museum which was actually eye opening to how this society came to be but I also appreciated the honest reflection not just of the oppression of the Jews but also their treatment of Africans and women.

The city card is worth every penny, public transport runs smoothly and the city is well connected. I was only there for four days and I wanted to stay longer. I would definitely return and explore some more.

Category
Berlin