Thursday, May 25, 2023

Travelogue: Berlin

One of the many bears of Berlin--this guy guarded the entrance to our hotel.

Last stop on our spring Mother/Daughter trip was Berlin. The most surprising thing about Berlin was how clean it was for a big city--granted, we stayed in a really nice part of the city, but the streets were clean as was the air. The traffic was also pretty light for such a large metropolis. Germany has been going green for quite awhile now and biking to work or taking public transportation seems to be the norm. Anyway, the sun was shining, the air was fresh and clean, and the flowers were out in abundance.

I loved walking in the Tiergarten in central Berlin where little gardens like this just popped up.

To finish up our WWII historical theme for this trip, Emily and I visited the Topography of Terror, which is a documentation museum covering the Gestapo and the SS and SA during the Nazi regime. Outside of the museum we walked along a portion of the Berlin Wall that has been preserved as a monument. We also visited the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Euope and Checkpoint Charlie.

Afterwards we agreed we needed to lighten the mood and do a few things just for fun. We visited the Museum of Natural History--we're big fans of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science as well as the Museum of Natural History in NYC, so it seemed like a good choice and it was a fun afternoon. Besides the requisite main hall being filled with dinosaur skeletons, this museum displayed animals differently from what I am used to--no dioramas but each stuffed animal in its own case. The weirdest exhibit by far was the huge room of jars filled with liquid and the remains of all sorts of creatures. 

The stuff that nightmares are made of!

For the final day of our trip, we walked across the street from our hotel and spent the day at the Berlin Zoo. It happened to be Father's Day in Germany (on a Thursday!), and so there were lots of families joining us. The zoo is absolutely beautiful, with interesting buildings/decor, large and natural-feeling enclosures for the animals, stunning gardens, and plentiful refreshment stands and cafes. And, they have pandas!!!!! I have never seen a panda other than pictures so that was pretty cool.

It was challenging to get a good photo as the pandas are behind glass and not getting me in the reflection was tricky.

Final image from Berlin is the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. It was bombed and almost completely destoryed in WWII. Instead of it being demolished, it was preserved and made structurally safe so that you can go inside and have a look around. Here's a bit more about it--I took tons of pictures of it and was fascinated by it.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my Jane, what a wonderful trip I am sure. How nice to spend time with your daughter.

    I'm sure I've missed plenty on your blog these last months but, I can see again - Thank Goodness . I finally did a blog post with an update and some summer picks; have a good summer.