You may be glad to hear that our third and final full day in Berlin did not contain any guided tours. We instead went out and had a look at the sights for ourselves and also explored Berlin a bit more.
We began a little earlier than normal as we were heading over to the Reichstag building to walk through their rooftop glass dome which gives a 360 degree of Berlin (Or there abouts). The weather wasn’t fantastic but the views were still rather exceptional. You ascend through the dome by the means of a spiral pathway. At the top there is a platform where you sit down and take in the views without the pressure of people behind you trying to get up. In the top of the dome there is a sizeable hole where, as you can imagine, rain water can pass into the dome. The function of this is not to fill the dome up with water and cause a great number of issues. Instead, the water is collected into a sort of metal funnel where it is then passed through the ventilation system to help moderate temperature. Rather resourceful but equally odd to see.
We then caught the U-Bahn to the Berlin Wall memorial which stretches along an entire street. The primary “attraction” (Attraction is not quite the right word, considering the context) is the untouched piece of no man’s land, or the Death Strip, between the two walls. Is was definitely surreal to see it and the idea that crossing this strip of land successfully meant freedom was a touch mind-blowing.
We hopped back on the U-Bahn, heading to Alexanderplatz but not before making one quick (Well, relatively quick) stop at a comic book shop that my dad had found the location of. For those who don’t know, I’m a big fan of comic books. Grober Unfug was the name of said comic book shop and it was brilliant. A good half of the shop contained English language comics which I happily browsed and purchased from. Definitely worth a visit if you are a comic book fan in Berlin.
After spending some time in the comic book shop we continued onto Alexanderplatz where we had lunch at a restaurant called Alex. It was situated under the TV tower which was one incentive for dining there as well it sharing the same name as my mum. If you thought that was exciting enough, the restaurant also had several sparrows flying around which was a frequent source of surprise to myself and other diners when they flew very close to our heads.
After lunch we headed over to the Olympic stadium. It was a rather grey building which felt a little bit menacing, not entirely surprising considering it’s Nazi origin. We walked around the entire stadium, passing the swimming pool and bell tower as we went. At the back of the stadium, on the commemorative plaque, we saw Jesse Owen’s name right at the top which was of interest to me due to covering his success briefly during my GCSE years.
Savignyplatz was our penultimate visit of the day. It was a more trendy area with smaller businesses, the bookshops in particular drawing my attention because they looked more exciting than ones back home. We walked around for a bit, absorbing the varied atmosphere present in the square before breaking at a local German pub, much to the happiness of my rather sore feet. We then had dinner at a friendly Italian restaurant.
On our journey home we took a quick stop at the Kaiser Wilhelm memorial church again where the Blue church’s (located next to the memorial church) name was given meaning. With the lights within turned on, the blue stain glass window shone, well, blue which was great to see and an equally great way to end the day. If you have any thoughts or questions please leave them in the comments.