TRIP TO BERLIN
Being Himachali boy I am always get excited when me and my friends plan a trip to new place where we got full enjoyment along with some sort of adventure new crazy things. This time we planned to go to some where in foreign locations.
Finally we decided to Germany which is famous for their luxurious cars. Now day is decided its going to be first of may and 15days trip. We two friend Sushil and me decided to leave @ morning 9am on due date. So day has come and we started our journey from Shimla to Delhi by bus from where we plan to take the flight to Berlin. We reached Delhi at 6PM, & we left Delhi at1:30 AM. Finally our journey start to Berlin which was my first experience to foreign. We reached in Berlin 8:30accourding to Indian time zone. Germany is 4:30 hours behind the India. We went to motel & directly go to bed after this tedious journey.
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and the third most-visited tourist destination in the EU. It’s the largest city in Germany, with a population of 4. 3 million within its metropolitan area. Next morning we plan to wander the Berlin.
The guide suggested either the taxi (23-30 euros) or the shuttle to the station and then the U-bahn. We found it much easier to walk for literally five minutes to the very near S-bahn station Flughafen Schönefeld where we got on the S-bahn S45 (a sort of tram system) to the closest U-bahn (the underground) in Warschauer Strasse and reached the station of Nollendorfplatz in approximately 45 minutes for 2 euros per person. There are automatic machines where you can purchase tickets and they have a selection of languages among which English.
Therefore, we had no problems in understanding the instructions. Remember to stamp your tickets (which is valid for two hours but not for round trips - it is said nowhere, so maybe it's good to know. )
Being so late, we checked-in at the Scandhotel Castor where we were booked and went to sleep.
We booked through an
excellent portal which we use often, HotelConnect. co. uk. The hotel staff was very friendly despite it was past midnight and the bedroom was nice and clean. The only problem were the duvets (when a light blanket would have been fine!)
Now we go to the new place where the roof was hanging in air like a tent, the glass roof above the Sony Centre square, in Postdamer Platz, is the symbol of the New Berlin. The glass roof is sustained by steer beams that are positioned like the spokes of a bicycle wheel. At night fall, this new type of roof changes color and illuminates the square. Conceived by the architect Helmut Jahn, the Sony European headquarters has become an unmissable site in the German capital. It is home to various companies, restaurants, shops and the Berlin Film Museum. This modern complex, a futuristic architecture with walls dressed with glass, is the new face of the Postdamer Platz, with the Daimler City and the Besheim Centre close by.
Berlin is known for its rich history and its lively nightlife with many cafes, clubs and bars. It is home to numerous museums, palaces, churches. Berlin is—at least in many parts—a beautiful city, so allow enough time to see all the sights. A good map, such as the
Rough Guide Berlin map, is highly recommended. While the public transport system is superb, the lack of signs in some of the larger stations can be confusing, so a good rail map is also essential.
Till then we visited the maximum part of the city but stilt there were many famous places to visit like the Pergamon-Museum, Bebelplatz, Brandenburger, Berliner Dom, Pariser Platz, Holocaust Denkmal etc. Then we decided to go to Holocaust Denkmal We went there by the U-bahn and when we emerged in Potsdamer Platz we couldn’t close our mouths. Sushil had
already been to Berlin in 1997 and this square was an enormous construction site. But now, the construction is (almost) over and the square is a real architectural work of art. Those who love contemporary art definitely should visit this square. We spent two hours walking around every single street in the area and taking at least 50 pictures of the buildings! The Sony Centre is amazing and we had to stop there for an ice-cream. We found out that the new Indian Embassy is there too, and SushiL proudly took another 50 photos. From Potsdamer Platz we walked to the Kulturforum, an area created in the 50s as the new cultural heart of Berlin. The National Library, the Philharmonie and several museums are all there. Among these modern buildings, and with the futuristic Potsdamer Platz in the background, there is one of the few buildings that survived World War-2. St Matthäus Kirche, a church dating back to the 19th century. The area, despite being very modern, is actually totally different from Potsdamer Platz, which is only few steps away. I really liked Berlin for this reason too: you simply have to walk for 30 minutes (sometimes even less) and you find yourself in a totally different city. It is great. You cannot get bored. After having finished our beer, we started walking towards the Brandeburg Tor, visible from Potsdamer Platz. We continued to wander around in Unter den Linden and stopped by the beautiful Friedrichswerdersche Kirche, from where we enjoyed a spectacular view of the Berliner Dom, just on the other side of the river. We then ended up right in front of the Kronprinzenpalais and had a delicious Weiss wurst (a long white sausage served with mustard) and a Bretzel!
If you go to Berlin, I think you should not miss a stop at the many stalls saying Imbiss and Getranke (snacks and drinks) where you can have bretzels, different types of Wurst and the typical Berlin “Imbiss”, the Curry Wurst, a Wurst cut in pieces in a delicious curry sauce and served with fries and a “brötchen”, a bread roll. After that, we walked back to towards the hotel, but when we reached Wittenberg Platz and its many bars we decided on another last-minute stop before dragging ourselves to our hotel.
After the usual great breakfast we went out. My legs were really aching after two long days of walking and walking, but I decided that I would not give up, and after a couple of pain killers, I was back in the street! We were determined to see the older part of Berlin and also some areas which are just outside the city center. Traveling in Berlin is very easy thanks to the excellent U-bah system; you can go everywhere for two euros. We got off the U-bah at the station of Spittelmarkt, just at the bottom of Museum Island. This little island on the Spree was home to one of the first two settlements of the 13th century and it is now entirely occupied by several beautiful buildings that hosts important museums. The Berliner Dom is on this little island too.
We entered the Dom, which, if I am not mistaken, is the largest Protestant Cathedral in Europe. It is pretty impressive, and it has much to see inside. There is an admission fee of €5 per person. The Electors’ monumental tombs, the Hohenzollern’s Mausoleum and the dome are a must-see. Marcel actually went up on the dome; I was not as brave, considering what the 400 stairs of the second day had done to my legs. So, I sat down in a loggia and read about the history of Germany. We left the Berliner Dom an hour and a half after entering; Sushil highly recommends climbing up to the top of the Dom, because there is a breath-taking view over the city from up there. We came out from the Berliner Dom after one and half hour.
We continued wandering in the streets of the area and we found this really cool series of buildings all interconnected through internal courtyards that host many restaurants, shops and bars. Really a cool place, and another nice excuse to stop for a coffee!
We then continued our walk to the area east of the city center. This area has some of the most ancient buildings in Berlin and it was the heart of coll, Berlin’s twin settlement when people first moved to this area. We continued our walk passing the Rathaus and reached two other impressive buildings at the end of Spandauer Strasse: the Ephraim-Palais and the Palais Münze. This latter, we discovered, is the mint. It was getting late, and we were starting to get tired, so we decided to enter the Nikolaiviertel, the old medieval quarter. We loved it. It has been rebuilt after the War in the old medieval style, so there are many nice buildings and many many shops and bars. It is a very lively area, and very different from the rest of modern Berlin. It is like a little old town of its own. We wandered in the little streets closed among the old buildings, we admired the exterior of the church Nikolaikirche and we stopped under the statue of Saint George killing the Dragon for a rest, in a small square full of flowers and little restaurants along the river Spree.
We decided to walk back to the hotel, and... we got lost... okay, sort of. We knew where the hotel was, approximately, but we ended up in the “blue area” a couple of porno shops, some sexy night clubs, some bars for homosexuals. We never once felt menaced; the area was actually an curious experience, but very quiet and safe. We finally found our hotel, a bit
sad, because we knew it was our last night in beautiful Berlin. We got up just in time for a huge breakfast. We packed and left our bags at the hotel, as we had the whole morning before having to head back to the hotel. Then we decided to go to the next tourist place of Germany. Berlin is the most beautiful city of the Germany. It was the wonderful experience of my life. It is the awesome city that i have visited in my life.
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