Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Berlin - Day 1 - November 2014

Time I got the blog going again.  Finally updating my travel photos again from November 2014. Slack I know but I've been busy. I never did keep a diary of my travels on this trip, so my memories are just going to be from the photos.

After Amersfoort in the Netherlands and saying bye to Jay and Gordon, I flew out the next morning to Berlin. I got a front seat in the plane (first class on a budget airline), and after landing, walked to the train station to catch the train. After much hemming and hawing I finally managed to get the ticket machine to work and get a ticket, but had no idea if I had the right one.  Fortunately a nice young man helped me, and then helped me find my station as we had to change once or twice, and had great difficulty trying to find the right platforms. Really laughable at the end. The young man was from Slick Steve and the Gangsters - which I found his poster plastered right outside my backpackers!

I booked into Wombats, Berlin, in a six bed dorm, but the only bed available was a top bunk, which wasn't really suitable for me with my balance. No one was prepared to change, so I had to upgrade to a private room, which ended up being really nice.  Dumped my luggage and then headed across the road to eat at a thai place for lunch as I was starving.

Once sated, I headed out to explore, caught the train down to Alexanderplatz, then down another two stations to look around.  The architecture was amazing...

Remnants of the Berlin Wall were around, many decorated with art...

I enjoyed looking at the German Treats, but I didn't try as I was full of Thai food!

I'm always a sucker for merry go rounds - especially with the lights on.  I wished I had had my tripod!

This was the weekend of the 30th anniversary of the wall coming down, so there was a lot of history on show...

More wall art...

Okay this is a red elephant, but I have no idea what it meant.  But took a photo anyway!

Found a garden of gold statues...

Then made my way to the Memorial of Murdered Jews of Europe..

This memorial is for the Jewish victims of the Holocaust, designed by architect Peter Eisenman and engineer Buro Happold. It consists of a 19,000 m2 (4.7-acre) site covered with 2,711 concrete slabs or "stelae", arranged in a grid pattern on a sloping field. The stelae are 2.38 m (7 ft 10 in) long, 0.95 m (3 ft 1 in) wide and vary in height from 0.2 to 4.8 m (7.9 in to 15 ft 9.0 in). They are organized in rows, 54 of them going north–south, and 87 heading east–west at right angles but set slightly askew. An attached underground "Place of Information" holds the names of all known Jewish Holocaust victims, obtained from the Israeli Museum Yad Vashem.
Building began on April 1, 2003, and was finished on December 15, 2004. It was inaugurated on May 10, 2005, sixty years after the end of  WWII, and opened to the public two days later. It is located one block south of the Brandenburg Gate, in the Friedrichstadt neighborhood. The cost of construction was approximately 25 million

It was starting to get pretty dark so as I was still jetlagged decided to head back to the Hostel.  Caught the train back to Alexanderplatz, and then walked back through the shopping areas.  Wanted to buy a few things, but couldn't because lack of space in luggage!