Friday, 2 June 2017

Berlin Travel Diary

Today is going to be the first post in my little travel series. I'm going to do a Berlin Travel Diary today, a European beauty haul on Tuesday as a bonus post, and finally, a Prague Travel Diary next Friday. 

If you follow me on social media you would know that last week i was in Berlin for 3 days before heading to Prague. I'm gong to chat to ye and tell ye about what we did, what we saw, where we stayed and all that jazz, a travel diary if you will. Just so if anyone is going to Berlin themselves and wants some recommendations or else if you just want to know what we got up to during the trip. 
East Side Gallery 
So we flew out from Dublin on Tuesday afternoon and arrived in Berlin in the evening. We found our way to our hostel using the subway, this is how we got around or the few days and was quite easy to use once you got the hang of it. We stayed in a hostel called The Cat's Pajamas , which we found on Hostelworld. I would highly recommend using HostelWorld  when booking any hostel because you know it's safe and legit, there are loads of reviews, and there are great directions to the hostels too. 
The Cats Pajamas Hostel
Even though the hostel wasn't in central Berlin, it was worth the subway trip. The staff were incredibly helpful, everywhere was clean and the whole place had a really cool urban vibe. There was a reception area to chill in, a big kitchen where you could cook and eat food, an outdoor space with really fab murals and surfboards as well as a basement games room which had table football and table tennis. I felt very safe there and enjoyed every minute of my stay. The only thing I would dock them for is the breakfast. It was an extra €5.50 and really wasn't worth it, there were juices, rolls and yoghurts but I would give it a skip next time and just grab breakfast close by. 
The Cats Pajamas Hostel
We were in a four bed mixed room which was a good enough size with an en suite and separate shower. There was also a little cubby hole at the head of everybody's bed so you could have your valuables near by when you slept to be extra safe. On every floor there was a room with another toilet, several sinks, a hairdryer and those amazing light up makeup mirrors so you could get ready in there if you wanted. I literally can't sing their praises enough and will definitely be returning in the future. 
Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour (we took the traditional route)
On our first full day we went on a hop on hop off bus tour , which was actually great as we saw some of the sights that we wanted to see like Checkpoint Charlie, Gendermaenmarkt, The Victory Column and Brandenburg Gate (even though that was sadly covered while we were there), Reichstag and Bebelplatz. Each stop was close to each other so we walked from sight to sight sometimes and we were left at one stop because of road works so we just walked to the next one ourselves.

Checkpoint Charlie
I am very glad we did the tour so we could get to see everything in Berlin we wanted to see without having to walk everywhere. Even though we did so much walking in Berlin, everything is quite spaced out so the subway and comfortable shoes are the way to go. We also visited Alexa  when we were finished which is a stop on the tour and it's a huge shopping centre where one of the many Kikos in Berlin is.
The Victory Column
Although I don't have any pictures of what we ate (and most of the time we just grabbed something to     eat in random places when we got hungry, just so we were able to see as much as we did) there are     some fab places to eat in Berlin, and the food there is so much cheaper than Ireland. So do your research before you go and see if there's anywhere you want to visit while you're there. 
Brandenburg Gate 
I can't do this blogpost without mentioning Rome 2 Rio, which is a website that tells you how to get from A to B. It tells you what subway to get and the walking directions once you get off the subway. It literally saved our lives whilst we were away because we had no idea how to get places. It will give you estimated travel time and works in so many different countries. If you're heading away to a different country then I highly recommend checking this website out, as well as TripAdvisor and HostelWorld to get reliable reviews, recommendations and directions. 
We started off day 2 in Topography of Terror , which we actually saw on our bus journey the previous day. This is a free exhibition of where the Gestapo headwaters was. Even though I'm not the biggest history fan I still found it really interesting and it was great that it was free entry. Just outside of the building is some of the Berlin Wall and next to that is another exhibition about the wall itself. I found this so fascinating and seeing some part of the remnants of the wall should definitely be on your to do list if you're in Berlin. 
Topography of Terror 
Outside Topography of Terror, part of the Berlin Wall 
The Berlin Wall
Then we headed to the Holocaust Memorial  and it's truly breathtaking. We didn't go into the exhibition part as there was a huge line but we just strolled around the memorial. Not only does it have an incredible meaning behind it, it's also architecturally great and the ground slopes as you walk into the sea of concrete slabs. Another thing I would highly recommend ticking off your list if you visit Berlin. 
Holocaust Memorial 
Holocaust Memorial 
After that we headed to East Germany to see possible one of my favourite things that we saw in Berlin, The East Side Gallery . This is a section of the Berlin Wall that is now home to some amazing pieces of art. I was kind of disappointed when I arrived there because the wall itself has a barrier in front of it, which is comply understandable so just know that before you go! You can still take pictures of the wall and see the art perfectly but there is another wall behind the wall that isn't covered and some sections of the wall aren't covered so it's easier to take photos of those parts. 
East Side Gallery 
East Side Gallery 
 There is also a little plaza by the river next to the wall which is an idea place to sit in the sun. I will definitely be going back if I'm in Berlin again. I know it is just a wall with paint but the whole story fascinates me, it was a horrible disgusting thing and it's been turned into a beautiful piece of art. 
East Side Gallery 
East Side Gallery 
The whole East Side of Berlin is really groovy and has amazing restaurants (like The Bowl, Darragh's personal favourite) and I definitely want to go back some day and explore some more. 
Oberbaumbrucke, the East Side of Berlin 
Even though it was quite a fleeting visit, we saw everything we wanted to see. There's so much to do and see in Berlin and I definitely want to go back soon and see different things and visit different areas. 
I hope you enjoyed seeing what we did and it was helpful if you visit Berlin sometime. Keep an eye out for the next of the travel blogposts from me,
Ailbhe x 



  1. Nice post! Berlin looks amazing, I have never been before but I was in Germany a couple of years ago. Your pictures are all so beautiful.

    1. Ugh its amazing, you have to go! Aw thank you,
      Ailbhe x