Berlin: revisited -2-

One of the modern sights to see is the SONY Centre which was built at the beginning of the millenium, with its astonishing roof construction.View from the atrium (interal courtyard):

The location is quite similar to a mall with its own movie theater/ cinema.

And the view from a neighbouring building which attracts tourist with its beautiful panoramic view apon some sights:

Zooming in one can see das Haus der Kulturen (House of cultures) on 1 o'clock. It's also called 'pregnant oyster' for its outer appereance :)
All that green around it belongs to the Tiergarten, which only partly is a zoo. The rest is a conventional park.

The next sight did not even exist when we first visited Berlin: das Holocaust Mahnmal (the Holocaust Memorial).
Build in 2005, it consists of 2700 concrete stele which vary in their hights and lenghts and form some kind of grid. You can walk through but guards prefent youngsters (visiting school classes, for example) from climbing on top of these...

Not so far from this sight one can get an impression of Die Mauer (the great Berlin wall) which divided the city and the whole country for almost 30 years!

It was not that thick but by its height (3 meters plus barbed wire) it was a very impressive barrier and GDR (German Democratic(!) Republic) sentinels had the order to shoot people who wanted to flee to West Germany.

On our way to the next subway station we past the Trabi Museum. Unfortunately, it had already been closed for that Sunday afternoon. It was the standard car in the GDR (Deutsche Demokratische Republik) and some people had to wait over ten years until their car was delivered (communism).

Heading back to the hotel, we bought some greeting cards to send home and entered the subway next to Checkpoint Charlie, the best-known legal crossing point between the GDR (Soviet Union) and West Germany (Western Allies). As you can see there's still some spectacle for the tourists. I bet the Mauermuseum directly beside it, has something to do with it :)

Next posting: Schloss Sans Souci by bike and the parliament building (Reichstag)


Berlin: revisited

Berlin is not only the 'new' capital of Germany, it's also our international Hollywood. Famous actors and musicians visit or work regularly in Berlin. I recently read that our well-known director Wim Wenders has shot an ice-cream commercial with Liv Taylor (The Lord Of The Ring) here! Though the city has much more to offer than the possibility of meeting music or movie idols. That's why I was so excited to go there for three days after not visiting for 8 years, and this trip started really different than the last one aswell.

Back then we had travelled the 600 Km by car, which of course took about 7 hours, making only 1-2 short breaks. We must have been lucky with no traffic jams caused by road works on the Autobahn (highway), too. However, this time we went by the fastest train we have, the ICE, which depending on the track section reaches up to a speed of 300 km/h(our). Okay, our internet connection wasn't the best but I think that it's generally a more relaxing way to travel longer distances. You don't have to concentrate on traffic, you can just lean back to read or to take a nap and the direct ICE connection took us there in only 4 hours! Despite of that, you don't need a car in the city, just take a taxi ride, go by bus or use the subway (U-Bahn).

We walked approximately 200 meters from the station to our residence, a Best Western Hotel near the KaDeWe (Kaufhaus des Westens), which is a maintainable distance in my opinion, and if you want to see all the monuments, museums and parks your going to be on your feet the whole day anyway. :)

NEXT posting: On our way through the city: architectur, monuments and curiosities like fancy Trabbis (standard car of the DDR, Deutsch Demokratische Republik, 1949 until 1990)