Abroad Edit: We’re Going to Berlin!

Radisson Blu Berlin

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A few weeks ago Pete and I were sitting in one of our favourite local coffee shops, Ginger and Bean, talking about what we (or mainly I) was going to do with leftover holiday days from last year that had to be used by March 31st. It seems such an odd concept that there literally isn’t enough time in any given year to take 25 days holiday but it happens most years that I’m normally left with days from the previous year…such a workaholic!

I’d decided to take a week off and spend 4 days doing stuff round the house and spend the 5th day at the Sofitel So SPA which was part of my birthday gift from him when all of a sudden he piped up with “I want to go to Berlin”. Readers, I cannot tell you what a miracle it is for Pete to express a want or interest in doing something. His typical response when asked anything is “whatever you want” which quite often gets us absolutely nowhere.

Fuelled by a burst of carpe diem we booked flights and a hotel and are heading off in a couple of weeks to spend a few nights at the Radisson Blu Berlin, centrally located and in itself a proper treat to relax and unwind for a handful of days. There’s also a spa there so I may get two treats for the price of one – a little holiday and a massage, sheer bliss.

But now the question of WHAT to do?? Where shall we go, eat, what shall we see? Everyone I’ve spoken to says Berlin is a wonderful city but I feel like Friday to Monday just won’t be enough to cram everything in. I love nothing more than walking and exploring, seeing new sights and in the case of visits to Germany, trying to find my sense of self and identity. Discovering who I am, who my family were. It’s a long story and one which is best saved for a separate blog post, but in my mid-teens we found out that my maternal Grandfather was German and it’s strange how somewhere deep inside a sense of displacement can exist when you’ve spent your whole life thinking you’re entirely one culture/heritage or another.

So I’m incredibly excited about our mini getaway and would absolutely love to hear your top tips if you’ve been to Berlin. What must we do in 72 hours?!

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  1. Kate
    March 14, 2017 / 6:51 am

    Definitely visit the Fernsehturm (TV tower). Brilliant modernist architecture! X

    • Lins
      March 15, 2017 / 10:35 am

      Fab thank you so much lovely, I’m really intrigued to see such an interesting part of very recent history. Busy reading a book all about Stasi stories, as you do! X

  2. March 14, 2017 / 2:12 pm

    It’s 7 years since I went to Berlin so my recommendations of restaurants etc (not that I recall any!) would be pretty passe by now! However, I will say that my favourite thing I did while there was a street art walking tour. Yes, we saw some cool graffiti, but more importantly, I learned so much about what it was like living there today, how politics and social history have shaped society, saw loads of great neighbourhoods I wouldn’t have ever visited otherwise, and generally felt as though I was immersed in the city in a way just looking at the sights has rarely done. Highly highly recommend it. And of course, you must see the wall, and Checkpoint Charlie. But otherwise, just do what the mood dictates – Berlin is such an amazing city, I think you are going to love it!! x

    • Lins
      March 15, 2017 / 10:30 am

      Perfect, both you and Emma have now recommended a street walking tour so will definitely look into that. It seems for the most part to be a city which is universally loved so I can’t wait to explore! Xx

  3. March 14, 2017 / 7:28 pm

    So, you have to do one of these walking tours – they’re free (well, they expect you to tip) but they are awesome. We did the normal one but the graffiti one looked amazing. http://originalberlintours.com/tours/free-original-berlin-walking-tour/ and we had awesome burgers at Burgermeister, and the best cocktails at Fairytale too. It’s just the cutest place and the cocktails were all really creative. One came in a glass slipper too – https://www.facebook.com/Fairytale-889344327785194/
    I really want to take Jim there but hes not that bothered! You’re going to have such fun. x

    • Lins
      March 15, 2017 / 10:28 am

      Oh wow thank you so much!! This all sounds great – I remember we did a foodie walking tour in Florence and it was fabulous. Super excited now Xx

  4. March 15, 2017 / 6:11 am

    I was there in June 2014, 30 weeks pregnant and it was 36 degrees. We had a fantastic time, walked the legs off ourselves, ate like kings and enjoyed every minute. The boat tour on the Spee River is excellent. I’ll try to look up where we are and get back to you.

    • Lins
      March 15, 2017 / 10:15 am

      That sounds wonderful, I definitely love the idea of eating like kings! I’m really excited now having heard so many good things from different people X

  5. March 16, 2017 / 1:42 pm

    If you want a break from all of the walking you’ll be doing you can hop on the bus 100 (or the 200). It’s just a normal public transport bus but it passes loads of the big sites. Best of all it’s free as it’s included in you’re day travel ticket (which I’m assuming you’ll have).

    PS. I’ve sent you an email with a few more suggestions.

    • Lins
      March 20, 2017 / 8:34 pm

      Thank you so so much for your email and tips, am going to reply now! X

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