Tuesday, April 13, 2010
After leaving Amsterdam, we caught the train to Berlin, and were promptly met at the Dutch/German boarder by soldiers and dogs trying to sniff out any reefer that those hippies would be trying to smuggle into the country. After a decently long journey, we made it into what could be the biggest train station I've ever seen. I think it honestly had 6 floors of platforms there! (storytime... when we were leaving I really had to use the washroom...#2...so I went there, but had to pay something like 2 Euros...anyways, I go in and look in the stall, but there is no toilet seat...so I hang around, cause I just spent 2 Euros to crap! Finally the cleaning person enters, goes in, sprays the rim/seat and then i realize that that's the way it is....regardless it called for a skybomb....but boy did i feel stupid) Anyways, we had to catch a cab to get to our hostel, and that's when I realized that this city is MASSIVE. It is so spread out, and we for the 2 nights that we stayed there, we definitely didn't even scratch the surface. We stayed at the Meinenes City Hostel? It was actually a really nice place, with a huuge selection for breakfast (free) where we actually made sandwiches for later that day when walking around. Pretty clutch when you're traveling by budget!
On our first full day, we caught the free walking tour which starts at the Brandenburg Gates. During this tour, the animated tour guide gave a brief history ( esp. WWII), and it was the first time that I felt my History undergrad was put to good use. We got to see the Memorial to the Murdered European Jews, the now parking lot which was once Hitler's Bunker and where he committed suicide, the Reichstag, the Berlin Wall, Checkpoint Charlie and the square where they held the burning of the books, Museum Island and other great stuff. I actually really enjoyed the tour.
Finally at night we hit up our first pubcrawl which was a good time, and soon we were off for the most ridiculous train ride ever to Poland
Berlin was awesome, and I definitely would go back and spend more time!