Welcome back! (I’m assuming you’ve read Part 1 – if not, click here!)
So I left off last week’s post mentioning Charlottenburg Palace which we visited on Friday. For the evening we headed over to Mauerpark (maybe my new favourite place?) for some chilled beers and a relax. We then got quintessential German food at a restaurant nearby.
Okay so here’s my opinion on German food… hit or miss. Honestly, no offence, but some of it is dire and others just strange. I went for some potato cakes (which came with fruit and icing sugar despite being a savoury option, interesting) as well as some cold meat and potato salad. Some of the other options around the table were looking questionable as well. Jude had what can only be described as a soggy-looking pasta dish (I’m told the technical term is Käsespätzle). However, there were some good looking schnitzel (classic Germany) around the table which did look delicious. All in all I’d say mixed feedback on German food (I did have another attempt later in the week at German food).
Onto Saturday (where this trip gets really interesting). So first we started our day at the East Side Gallery, Berlin Wall, which is obviously iconic but actually I enjoyed it so much more than I thought I would! The artwork is deep and meaningful, thought-provoking and politically challenging. Along the wall there is art to suit all tastes, styles and moods. Walking along in the sun, next to the Berlin Wall, is a must do for any bucket list.
Next to the Berlin Wall is Mercedes Platz, an area with shops, restaurants and bars. L’Osteria was a small Italian restaurant we found to soak up the sun and drink white wine (okay just me with the wine).
Next off to Checkpoint Charlie! Synonymous with Germany, the partition between East and West Berlin, during the Cold War. Checkpoint Charlie has fake American soldiers stationed for tourists to take photos with. Being me, obviously I wanted a picture. As I was smiling various comments were been made in my ear causing me to visibly cringe (the evolution of my face in the pictures is pretty entertaining!)
Swiftly leaving Checkpoint Charlie, we headed to the Mall of Berlin. This is such a great shopping centre – the highlight has to be the slide! (Honestly we need these in the UK, because as I child I want to do this). Me and Nicole headed off for some girls shopping, but were accosted by a hair stylist who was possibly the most persuasive salesman EVER! James from Golden Curl was an absolute babe, he did mine and Nicole’s hair for free as we discussed life, our travels and love lives. As possibly the best salesperson ever we did purchase some products (such impulse buys, and why Nicole is a bad influence on me). We did manage to reduce the price by nearly 2/3 due to our amazing negotiating skills! (I love Europe).
Back at the apartment using our new Golden Curl products (posh I know), we got ready for another evening at Alexanderplatz, where I ordered some sort of wurst dish (but stole Jude’s currywurst, because mine was a bit grim). We then headed to a bar, where they had weird screens to order (who knew?) and pull your own beers, which was pretty cool.
The next morning I headed out (as everyone was hungover and I was not) to Volkspark Humboldthain which is a massive park near where we were staying. This place also had part of the Berlin Wall as well as a massive monument structure. My favourite part was definitely the rose garden where I sat and had my coffee and butterkekse and called my family filling them in about my trip.
After everyone finally woke up and made it out of the apartment (some better than others *cough* Jude) we headed to Mauerpark for the Sunday market which I’d been dying to go to. My expectations were by far exceeded as this was one of my favourite parts of the trip! So the markets were amazing with so many colourful clothes, beautiful artwork and African jewellery. I got some henna and got a wurst! Radler is also my new German drink of choice, yummy yummy.
So the reason I wanted to go to Mauerpark so bad on a Sunday is because they have karaoke, but this is like no karaoke you’ve seen before. Imagine theatre in the round but with drunk, cheesy, eclectic karaoke, people from all across the world cheering, drinking and singing in the sun! Just amazing songs like No Diggity, Mandy, Girls Just Want To Have Fun and Angels all came up and were sung to various degrees of success. However, the clear cut winners of the day had to be two men that sang Bohemian Rhapsody with beer bottles in hand, one with a yellow jumper tied round his head as a sun shade, running round the stage and reaching every realm of the vocal range known to man. As the day got later the vibe mellowed out as independent musicians came out in full force for what seemed like a hippie sort of festival. Me and Nicole became huge fans of some incredible drummers and danced the evening away in the sand.
After some incredible experiences in Berlin it was time to leave sadly. Handing back the keys on Monday morning, all packed up we left our 6th floor apartment. Oh wait… there’s a small issue… it seems as if in the middle of the night someone knocked out the stairs. (Not kidding, fully for real, still can’t believe that actually happened). So on Sunday night we climbed 6 flights of stairs to the apartment, and it seems as while we were asleep (how we did not hear this is beyond me) the main structure of the apartment was knocked out! As we looked down at the demolished staircase, wondering how we were going to get to ground level, we noticed a hole in the wall that led to some scaffolding. Down we go. As Jude carries my bag as I hold on for dear life as the wooden boards shift below my feet, I still can’t comprehend that I am climbing down scaffolding in 30 degree heat in residential Berlin!
Heading to say bye bye to the Brandenburg Gate before our evening flight, we spent Tuesday sat in a restaurant in the sweltering heat before coming back to rainy, windy Britain.
Overall, however strange, the trip to Berlin was such a fun city break and so worth a visit! Make sure to check out some of the places I’ve been for the best city break.
More of my trips listed below: