Looking for Freedom

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

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Hello everyone, Daniel here again.

Well this morning the weather looked a lot better so we caught the metro to attempt our bike tour again.  Although there was no rain we were freezing and wished we had brought jumpers.  It looked so warm in the morning!

The tour was a really good mix of sites from all different times in Berlin’s history.  We were shown statues and buildings from during the communist times in East Germany like a large sculpture of Marx and Engels and the huge TV Tower which was built during this time and remains the tallest structure in Germany.  East Germany built the tower to show the world how technologically advanced and amazing they were but couldn’t actually build it themselves and had to smuggle in Swedish engineers to finish the job.  Nice one fellas!  Of course the main site from this time is the Berlin wall or what remains of it.  There is not a lot left and what is left is in very bad condition with tourists and locals having done their part to destroy it although I could still imagine David Hasselhoff standing on it singing Looking for Freedom.  There is a double cobblestone line that runs throughout the city marking where the wall once was and a fair bit of the wall was actually made up of buildings which were highly secure.  We also saw one of the last remaining guard towers from this time which seemed incredibly run down and covered in graffiti and pigeon droppings despite it’s historical significance.

We also saw sights from the Prussian times such as the Brandenburg gate which was one of several large gates through which you entered the city of Berlin.  We also saw several old churches including the French and German Cathedrals which were built opposite each other with the Germans trying to outdo the French in every aspect of the church’s construction.  Can we see any more churches on this trip!

The World War 2 historical sites were surprisingly quite limited on the tour but we were taken to Hitler’s Bunker.  Or what remains at least, it is now just a patch of grass outside some apartment blocks with nothing but a sign to indicate the significance.  I wasn’t expecting a monument but perhaps a museum or something?  The guide admitted that on the date of Hitler’s birthday and other Nazi events, neo-Nazis come and lay flowers on the site which I thought is quite disgusting.

Just around the corner from Hitler’s bunker is a memorial for the Jews killed during the war which is just one of many memorials to those killed.  Our last stop was a German beer garden where we had the usual wieners for lunch with a few German beers.  By this time we were freezing and we had a plane to catch so we dashed back to the hotel and caught a train to the airport.  Another wiener for dinner at the airport and off south to Munich we went!  Jumping on another train in Munich we eventually arrived at our hotel very much over the travelling.  We saw a lot of sites in Berlin but I feel like we only saw a very small part of it.  I guess we will just have to go back one day.

Yes the blog is a bit behind but I will be catching up a bit now that I have internet again so stay tuned.

Daniel + Ly.
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