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Last updated : Nov 2009
The final push west to Berlin
Rating: (4.4) (7 Votes)

Berlin, Germany
October 10th, 2003

Pros: long stretches of funky restaurants, bars and clothes shop
Cons: none

wroclaw's weather didnt let up but despite the drizzle and grey skies it was still a very pretty place with the second largest town square in Europe apparently! the approaching winter was gathering momentum but there were only a few more days to endure.

leaving Poland for Germany i decided this time to take the more sensible option of the day train to Berlin to avoid another midnight robbery like the other week. arriving in Berlin it was all pretty easy to get around and find the hostel, thankfully i was pre-armed with a handy city spy map, very useful if you want to find your hostel as its in a sort of cartoon form, not sure about you but it i find it helps!

the area where the hostel was is in the old east berlin area previously occupied by the soviets until that famous day when the wall was officially torn down...the area is still undergoing a massive facelift one street is almost totally gentrified and now has long stretches of funky restaurants, bars and clothes shops...after another huge meal (to fill my enlarged stomach from 2 months in easter europe!) i decided to walk it off with a stroll around Berlin. whilst not the prettiest city by night, particularly with a giant TV tower dubbed the golf ball on a skewer (built by the commies to show how advanced their tech was), in the future once everythings been repaired etc it should be

given my limited time here in Berlin i decided the next morning to do a full day walking tour of the city that some other travellers had recommended. despite the weather closing in with chilly temps and squally rain we were pretty much captivated all day by an extremely knowledgeable and enthusiastic guide..a canadian guy whod come over for a school exchange back in 1989 and had lived there since 1999...it had to be the best moneys worth for any sort of tour ive ever done, for a mere 10 euro, we were flooded with amazing facts and taken to all the sites (including the carpark/childrens playground which now lies over the air raid bunker where old Adolf topped his dog his lover and himself at the bitter end) a great tour (Brewer's Berlin) if anyone ever goes to Berlin content with seeing all the major sites in a day, the following day was spent exploring more of East Berlin and its many ugly and lifeless buildings and streets, in some areas youd could be mistaken for thinking it was still pre 1989...i found a great second hand shop full of some quality 70s and 80s paraphernalia, perfect for my bad taste party coming up in london!!

then went on to see the famous East side gallery, where international artists have painted murals along the longest remaining stretch of the wall...there was still a guy selling tiny pieces of the wall for 5 euro...needless to say i wasnt at all tempted

after a bit of shopping it was time to finish up youngieonsafaris eastern european adventure and sadly one of the last installments of the entire youngieonsafari juggernaut...its back to london to tie up the loose ends and fit in just one more short trip this time up to the scottish highlands!

stay tuned for that one!