Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Berlin Christmas Markets

Since the teenager's American school here in England didn't have classes on Thanksgiving Thursday or Friday, we decided to visit Berlin for the long weekend. I must admit I wasn't as impressed with the city as I was with Cologne, but that's probably because we bombed the hell out of Berlin during the war. And then that whole wall and cold war era certainly didn't help it rebound. Per our tour guide, the communists levelled many of the old buildings on their side, so much of what we saw had only been built since the wall came down in 1989.

Checkpoint Charlie, above and below

Our tour guide told us about the Trabi Cars, made from plastic rather than metal. You can't miss them - they sound like a sickly lawnmower and put out quite a lot of exhaust.

One of the few remaining sections of the old Berlin Wall

Below is the most famous parking lot in Berlin, the site where Hitler's bunker was located and he spent the last days of the war hiding underground like a trapped rat before committing suicide.

Berlin's Holocaust memorial above and the Brandenburg gate below

Above is a picture of the Reichstag

The Christmas market we most enjoyed was Gendarmenmarkt, just a couple blocks from where we were staying in what was East Berlin.

As expected, I worked in a bit of retail therapy at the Kathe Wohlfahrt store. And added another gluhwein mug to my collection I started last year in Cologne.

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