We were pretty knackered by the time we finally reached Berlin. A long journey from Prague and late arrival to the city meant we had long missed our slot to visit the Bundestag and climb the Dome of the Reichstag Building. Worse still, there were no slots left to rebook for another day whilst we were in Berlin. It was the one thing that we had hoped to do during our stay.
Luckily, an amazing paella and couple of glasses of wine from the Spanish restaurant opposite our hotel (Best Western Spittlemarkt) helped us forget the nightmare journey from Prague, and a good nights sleep set us in the right direction to explore Germany’s capital the following morning.
Checkpoint Charlie Museum, Berlin
We started our day with a visit to Checkpoint Charlie Museum. At £12.50 each it is probably the most expensive museum we have ever visited. The entry price didn’t allow photography, (although you are able to take photographs for a €2 fee), so for a refreshing change we left the camera and spent a good couple of hours exploring the many displays of the museum. When we finally tried to leave we got lost and the maze of displays and spent 10 minute trying to escape.
Having once been left behind at Checkpoint Charlie Museum with a few of my friends on a school trip, I now realise how they lost us!
After Checkpoint Charlie, we stopped for coffee to warm up, before setting off on what would become an epic walking tour of Berlin. We had no destination in mind, but a long and interesting walk around the capital made Berlin one of our favourite cities of our European road trip.
Although we didn’t get to climb the Bunderstag as the queues were so very long, we did at least get to walk past it on our travels. It was one of many incredible buildings we admired on our trot round.
Soviet War Monument (Tiergarten)
On our walk, we came across the Siegessäule (known as Victory Column). For a cost of €3 each, we climbed the 285 steps to the 360degree viewing platform. The climb rewarded us with incredible views over the city of Berlin, and made up for missing our slot to climb the Dome at Bundestag….
Advent Markets, Berlin
Although it was never intentionally planned for our trip, we we’re yet again in town for another advent market. After browsing the stalls which replicated those in Zagreb, Vienna and Prague, we stepped inside the log cabin bar for a warming Gluhwein (for research purposes, obviously!)
We did intend to only stopped to warm up, but soon, a couple from Bournemouth sat next to us, and one glass turned into two. Soon it became a few, which was one too many for them, so we left them to their drinking, dancing, (and arguing) and found ourselves once more in the Spanish restaurant opposite our hotel, with a huge bowl of the most delicious muscles tasted by man.
By the time we made it to bed, we had walked over 16 miles around Berlin! It was hardly surprising that by the time my birthday came the next day, we both slept right through breakfast time. Instead, we got ready in time for lunch and had a lovely meal at Thai Restaurant, catching up with work over a few glasses of prosecco.
And, after a couple of tiring days and long couple drive to Amsterdam ahead, we were back at the Best Western, fast asleep by 8pm.
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