Blogs from Berlin, Berlin, Germany, Europe


Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin May 18th 2023

Today was a busy day for us as we included two excursions to our trip in and around Berlin. Our first trip was to Potsdam just on the other side of the line between West Berlin and East Germany during the Cold War. We crossed the Gleinicker Bridge near Potsdam where several spy exchanges were made and them made our way to Cecilienhof where the Potsdam Conference was held during which the decision was made by Churchill, Truman and Stalin to divide up Germany into four sectors as well as dividing Berlin the same way. This eventually led to the building of the Berlin Wall separating east from west. After leaving Cecilienhof, we continued on to Sanssouci (without worry) Palace home to Frederick the Great. This was his summer home where he retreated to relax. He ... read more
 Babelsberg Palace
At the end of the Bridge
Collanade at the end of the bridge

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin May 17th 2023

After spending the night in Cologne, we boarded the train and embarked on a 5 hour train ride to the city of Berlin. The train ride was uneventful and not particularly noteworthy and did arrive an hour late to our destination. We attempted to purchase lunch on the train, but anything we wanted they did not have. I settled for a cup of hot chocolate. On that note, coffee in Germany is not the coffee we are accustom to so ordering coffee came with a risk that it was too strong to drink. We learned to water down the coffee at breakfast. The main reason to take the train was to shorten the trip from Cologne to Berlin by half. Upon arriving in Berlin we were met by our Berlin tour guide and taken on a ... read more
Stops Along the Way
Looking out the Window
The Hanging Train in Wuppertal

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin February 7th 2023

(From Road Trips for Families) A Schengen Visa is a short-stay visa allowing its holder to circulate in the Schengen area, which covers 26 countries without border controls between them. These countries are: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. When you get a Schengen visa, you get a short-stay visa to 26 European countries. (I have been to countries in italics). A Schengen visa lets its holder stay in any of the “Schengen States” for 90 days. You can travel freely between the 26 Sc... read more
Yes, can you believe it?

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin December 11th 2022

The long weekend totally flew by! One minute we had arrived and then we were getting up at 5am to catch the plane home on Sunday. There’s so much more in Berlin that I want to see, so I do need to come back, maybe try it in the summer! The majority of the historic stuff I’ve seen has been about WW2 and the Cold War occupation. I would like to learn more about earlier history plus more recent culture and what it’s like to be a German these days. Unlike many other countries I’ve visited, they certainly openly confront the very worst parts of their history, don’t try to make excuses but try to educate. I wish more countries could do that, including my own. Their architecture is pretty wonderful and I prefer it to ... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin December 10th 2022

Another frosty day in Berlin and we walked to Alexanderplatz to catch a train to Gesundbrunnen where we were to go on an Underground Tour of a communal air raid shelter. Our multicultural group had two guides: Eran who did the talking and Christina at the back to ensure no one wandered off. There were very few communal bomb shelters in Berlin during WW2, most people were encouraged to use their own basements. This particular shelter was created within existing tunnels around the underground station. I did find it a bit odd that there were spare rooms created when the station was built, but that was the best reasoning I got for their existence. There was only 8cms of concrete above us and the shelter wouldn’t have been all that protective had there been a direct ... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin December 9th 2022

Glyn strode out into the frosty, misty morning purposefully as though he knew where he was going. I followed like I believed it. We had to purposefully walk a bit further after crossing the wrong bit of road and missing the tram stop. However, we managed to catch the correct tram and travelled past the places we’d walked along last night. We’ve still not sussed where we’re meant to scan or present our travel tickets. Technically we’ve not paid for any of our journeys yet, despite having paid for 4-day travel cards. But no one else appears to be scanning tickets either. We caught an old fashioned looking underground type train. It was meant to be one stop and would have been, had we gone the right way! Announcements on the train said that wearing a ... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin December 8th 2022

Arriving at BER we were stuck at the back of a massive queue with all the other Brits. I’d left a scarf on the plane and returning to retrieve it meant we were one of the last to join the queue too. Salt was rubbed into the Brexshit wounds when a member of staff shouted, “anyone with Resident passes or EU citizens?” as they could go to the fast automated EU line, but we were stuck with the rest of the world in the painfully slow, non automated dickhead queue. We gazed longingly at the empty auto passport scanners with the info screens rotating videos on how to use them, that meant you didn’t have to talk to officials. There were only three passport desks open as I guess they’re set up for EU citizens in ... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin October 2nd 2022

Hotellin aamupala. Metrolla Warschauer Strasselle. Aluksi satoi hiukan. Kivoja katuja. Ratikalla jatkoin Prezlauer Bergiin. Vissytauko. Kävelin muurin muistomerkille, jossa oli väkkeä. Metrolla Kreuzbergiin, kävelyä, en löytänyt mukavaa ruokapaikkaa, joten jatkoin hotellin lähettyville. Kävin syömässä falafel-annoksen ja lähipubissa pienen oluen 2,4 €. Hotellissa kahvi ja leivos. Menin illalla vielä tapaamaan Jukkaa, joka on asunut Berliinissä jo yli 20 vuotta ja joka oli aikoinaan (1988) samalla Costa Rican matkalla kuin minä.... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin October 1st 2022

Otin hotellin runsaan aamupalan, vaikka siitä piti maksaa erikseen. Ei huvittanut lähteä kokeilemaan aamiaista muualle. Oli sadepäivä, ja lähdin liikkeelle drymax-takilla. Metrolla Osloer Strasselle ja sieltä ratikalla itään ja sieltä jatkoin DDR-museolle. Museoon oli jonoa ja siellä oli sen verran väkeä että päätin pitää sisällä maskia. Mitä uutta opin DDR:stä? Sodan jälkeen DDR oli ollut kehittynyt teollisuusmaa, ja se pystyi myymään tuotteitaan maailmanmarkkinoille. Mutta sosialismin aikana tuotanto ei kehittynyt, esimerkiksi Trabant ei juurikaan muuttunut 30 vuodessa, ja vientimarkkinat kuihtuivat vähitellen. Näin kaupungilla kaksikin mielenosoitusta - niiden takia oli muuten bussiliikenne katkaistu Unter den Linden -kadulla. Yksi mielenosoitus vastusti Venäjään kohdistuvia pakotteita ja toinen Iranin hallintoa. Ajoin S-junalla Kudammille ja sieltä 2-kerrosbussilla hotellille. Pie... read more

Europe » Germany » Berlin » Berlin September 30th 2022

Söin huoneessa aamupalaksi banaanin ja voisarven ja lähdin sitten automaattipesulaan, jonne oli matkaa noin kilometri. Kun pyykit pyörivät koneessa, kävin pullakahvilla, ja sen jälkeen pyöritin pyykkejä kuivurissa vielä puoli tuntia. Pesulassa saattoi käyttää myös luottokorttia, ja siellä ei ollut väkeä juuri lainkaan. Levitin pyykit huoneeseen, vaikka ne olivat melkein kuivia. Ostin 24 tunnin lipun joukkoliikenteeseen. Pääsin liikkeelle klo 12.30. Kävin ensin katsomassa Weddingissä taloa, josta olin varannut Airbnb-majoituksen, mutta jonka sitten myöhemmin peruin. Talo oli korkea opiskelija-asuntola, joten siellä olisi voinut tuntea olonsa oudoksi. Jatkoin S-junalla Prenzlauer Bergiin. Siellä pätkä ratikalla ja kanaleipä. Kävelykierros vei minut vesitornille. Lopuksi otin pienen oluen. Päätin muutenkin siirtyä suurista juomista pieniin juomiin. Palasin hotellille maan pintaa pitkin.... read more

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