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2023-11-08 Berlin or Bust

Hallo. Mein Name ist MJ. Ich bin einundzwanzig. Ich komme aus Irland. Danke schön.

And that, dear reader, is the sum total of my ability to speak German.  It should be noted that I am no longer 21.  I was, many years ago when I studied German in college.  Anyway. it gave my Uber Driver a good laugh!

So, what am I doing in Berlin?  That's a good question.  I don't really have an answer.  I was browsing the internet, somehow ended up on the Aer Lingus site booking a cheap flight to Berlin.  I do like to fly Aer Lingus when I can.  The seats are just that bit more comfortable than Ryanair, and when you have a shit spine, it makes all the difference.

Since I booked the flight, I though I better book some accommodation.  When travelling on my own, I'm not fussy where I stay as long as it is clean, safe and cheap and Space Night Capsule Hostel was just that.  I could try and explain what a POD / Capsule is, but just click on the link above and you'll see.

So, what did I get up to?  Well, on the first day in Berlin, I did some tourist stuff.  I visited Checkpoint Charlie, took a look at some remnants of the now defunct Berlin Wall and just wandered aimlessly around the area.  Later that night, I headed to Lido to catch the excellent 7ebra and Arab Strap perform.  Good times!  Mind you, the lighting was horrific as you can see in the photos.

Checkpoint Charlie

Berlin Wall at Axel Springer

Lido Berlin


Arab Strap

There's so much to see in Berlin, so on day two, I continued with the sight seeing.  I headed to the Museum für Kommunikation Berlin where I promptly passed out in a 60s style egg seat for an hour, only to wake up to a security guard staring at me!

From there I headed to Wilde Mathilde, a fantastic Burlesque restaurant / cocktail bar, for a spot of lunch.  Unfortunately, the burlesque shows are not on mid week, so if they do interest you, keep that in mind!  The food was excellent though and it's a fun place to sit and watch the world go by.

From there, it was a relatively short walk to Berliner Fernsehturm to lookout over the city of Berlin from a few hundred meters up in the air.  As you can imagine, the views from that height are stunning!

After that, I had planned to go to the KitKat Club (if you know, you know) for a photography exhibition, but by this stage of the day, my back had given up and I couldn't really walk. 

As luck would have it, there was a huge cinema complex nearby, so I caught a late show of The Marvels.  It was grand, but no KitKat Club!  Oh, one word of warning, the cinema, CineStar CUBIX, only takes German debit cards, no Visa, no Mastercard.  So, for the visitor, that means cash only.

Wilde Mathilde

Berliner Fernsehturm


My last day in Berlin revolved around finding somewhere nice to eat Currywurst, head to Kleine Nachtrevue for a burlesque show and finally, late at night, heading to the Brandenburg Gate.

So, what is Currywurst, you're probably wondering.  Well, it's a local Berlin delicacy, served everywhere, but to be very blunt about it, it's sausage and chips with curry sauce.  Not much different from what you'd get in you local chipper to be honest.  But hey, it's a delicacy!

After gorging on that, I headed off to Kleine Nachtrevue for a great night of Burlesque.  Met at the door by Sylvia, the clubs owner/hostess/boss, I'm shown to my seat and given a complimentary cocktail, non alcoholic in my case, and waited patiently for the show to start.  I wasn't disappointed.  The show was fun, raunchy and, when needed, our hostess spoke in both German and English, just to explain things for the non natives in the audience.  There's no photos from the show unfortunately, the club has a strict no camera rule.  If you're in town and like burlesque, I'd recommend the show.

It was almost midnight by now and I was flying home the next morning, but I'd yet to see the Brandenburg Gate.  I hopped in an Uber and got dropped off at the site.  It turned out to be a great idea.  It looks stunning at night, it is beautifully lit up and there are only a handful of tourists lurking about.  However, it appears to be going under cleaning or refurbishment at the moment, so  much of it is surrounded by scaffolding.  Still though, definitely go see it and do it late at night!

Kleine Nachtrevue

Brandenburg Gate

So that was Berlin.  What did I think of it? Well, it's a wonderful city with so much to see and do.  It's club life is legendary, we're all well aware of its historical significance and, compared to Dublin, it's not that expensive, or at least I didn't think so.  I'd recommend signing up for Uber if you haven't already, the city is flooded with drivers.  And that's it, or at least all I can remember!

Time to start planning my next city break.

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