Trip Start May 01, 2010
Trip End Jul 10, 2010

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Daniel here again,

Well we have been in Berlin for a few days now and not really done much except relax.  The last two days everything has been shut because it is a long weekend here so we haven’t had the opportunity to do much. 

We travelled here on EasyJet from Budapest which was fine and then took the train from the airport to near our hotel.  I managed to get a very good rate at the Swissotel in Berlin and being the same price as the other hotels we have been staying in (Ibis, Mercure etc) it is a nice upgrade.  The hotel is right on the main shopping strip (although everything has been closed) and because we are a honeymooning couple (second honeymoon anyway) we got upgraded to a room with a view of the city.  Unfortunately we can’t see the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church which is just down the road and very impressive.  It is a large church that was bombed in WWII and unlike most German buildings was not rebuilt.  The half wrecked church is very imposing and a strong reminder of Berlin’s troubled past.

As we tend to do, we sought out food soon after our arrival.  I had read that the world’s second biggest food hall is in Berlin (the first being our favourite, the Takashimaya food hall in Tokyo) which was luckily just down the road from our hotel in a department store called KaDeWe.  The food hall was quite impressive although wasn’t perhaps as international as Takashimaya yet we still managed to find some decent Thai food.  Having browsed the hall for a while we decided to try the local favourite dish called Curry Wurst.  It is extremely popular here in Berlin and is basically a pork sausage (usually cut up) smothered in a curry flavoured tomatoe sauce.  It tastes alright I guess but I think you would have to be a Berliner to really enjoy it.  We tried another sausage too which was nicer I thought and picked up a huge piece of German cake for later.  A few macaroons found their way in to our bag too!

Knowing that we would soon be spending a week on the beaches of the Greek isles we stocked up on a few English books while we had the chance.  The Germans speak embarrassingly good English compared to my often mangled ‘Australian’ which makes everything here so easy.

Last night we went out for Vietnamese food which we figured would be authentic as quite a few Vietnamese have settled in Berlin.  The restaurant was Mr Hai and Friends and was only a short walk away which was a plus.  The entrées were good (although mine was more of a Thai salad) but the mains were a real let down.  The owners were Vietnamese but North Vietnamese so we blamed the bad food on that!  It was still nice to eat something reasonably healthy though.

Anyway today we celebrated 3 years together!  To celebrate we took the morning off and lazed around reading eating fresh pretzels which are everywhere and very tasty.  The plan was to go on a sightseeing tour of Berlin on bikes this afternoon so we caught the metro to the bike shop.

We had to pick out a bike (mine was named Hasselhoff) and then hit the road on these extremely large and heavy bikes.  The bikes were a change from our lycra wearing carbon fibre frame days but a lot more comfortable to ride.  We had only gone two stops before it started pouring with rain so we had to give up on the tour but will try again tomorrow.  The bike company mentioned a great Mexican place around the corner called Dolores which we found quite easily.  I don’t know if it’s because it has been too long since our last burrito or what but the burritos were really really good and I think we will be back there tomorrow...Dessert was a McDonalds McFlurry, only because they have Magnum flavour here which includes chocolate and pieces of brownie, so nice.  Might have to go back there tomorrow too...

I think Berlin is a really cool city, there is a lot to see, it’s international, has amazing architecture and the people are great.  Hopefully we can go on the sightseeing bike ride tomorrow and see more of the city ideally without rain.

Daniel + Ly

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Mum on

Glad to hear you enjoyed Budapest, will look forward to seeing the pictures. I am sure she is the sister city to Melbourne with the four seasons in one day!
Enjoy your time in Berlin, I am sure that you are excited to be going to Athens and the greek islands soon. I think that may be the highlight as they are so spectacular.
You are both always in my thoughts,
love mumxxxx

Barbara Brown on

Hi guys
sounds like a wonderful time so far although your comments in Berlin are mainly around food..... does that surprise anyone? Stay safe and enjoy yourself. Personally I would like the Greek Islands but I guess you need to see everything to make good comparisons. What a wonderful time your'e having and beautiful memories that'll last a lifetime.

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