Monday, April 25, 2011

Berlin April 25 - May 1

Dresden to Berlin today, a two Hour Train ride. Must remember that travel on Easter Monday is like Thanksgiving travel in the USA, everyone is out to visit with family. We had train tickets but no seats, all were reserved, but after 30 minutes we discovered an almost empty Restaurant Car and spent the train ride sipping Budweiser Beer (the real one) and eating Cheese with nice German company from the North.
In Berlin Hotel, after a short detour to the wrong direction from the Main Rail Station. There are two "Kastanienalle" Streets in Berlin and we were directed to the wrong one directly the opposite direction from our place, so an extra 25 minute Train / Bus ride for us. Thanks again to a nice lady in the bus that toke the time to explain the different areas of Berlin.
First impression - Berlin is too large - give us back Dresden!     Tuesday used Public transportation to move around Berlin Mitte and Alexander Place.
Wednesday met with two women that know a friend of ours (Klaus) that passed away two yeas ago May 7, 2009, visited grave site outside Berlin and walked around Kurfurstendamm. Our Hotel is in a really upcoming area (former East Germany) with many or mostly young people and many restaurants, bars, coffee shops. Not the real Germany but very interesting maybe the new Germany?  

Thursday 75 F, we are now experts with the Subway, Tram, Bus or S-Bahn. Went to the new Government Center Buildings, Presidents Palace, Memorial for European Jews, Brandenburg Tor, Under the Linden and toke the Bus 100 (Double decker, Public transportation) around the main city sites. Back in our area had Indian Food for the second day, great restaurants in the area most of them Asian, Indian, Turkish with a few German.    Two weeks now and I still get responses in English when I ask in "My German", fishing for the right words in German.  

Friday April 29, 75 F, visited Check Point Charly, East Side Gallery (Wall), North side memorial, Castle Charlottendorf  today = 9 miles of walking and 10 subways, Trams, S-Bahn, Busses, ended the day with Beer and Pizza.
Saturday April 30 went on trip to Potsdam (about 45 minutes by train) and did Tour of  three Castles:  New Palace, Sanssouci and Cecilienhof then spent time in beautiful Potsdam.
Sunday May 1, some problems the night with protesters and marches but not very serious. Today, May 1 Labor Day, there should be many gatherings in parks and some demonstrations. Went around the city with bus 200, and spent some more time in the center "The Mitte". Last day, tomorrow 9:25 train to Hamburg, a 2 hour trip. Today was a sunny day with a cool wind temperature high 63F at Noon.

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