Friday, January 19, 2007

Day 6 Monday, Memorial Church, Olympic Stadium, the Reichstag

Today was our free day and we were planning to go to Potsdam and check out the palace but it was closed today. Luckily, we discovered this before we left the hostel. So instead we went back to the KaDeWe area to check out the bombed-out church that serves as a war memorial.

After that, we took the S-Bahn out of the range that we had paid for (accidentally, I swear!) to see the Olympic Stadium, which was built by Hitler for the 1936 Olympics. The stadium very stark in the way that you expect Third Reich architecture to be, but it had been spruced up some by the addition of a partial glass roof and the removal of the Fuhrer’s Box. It was also the site of the finals of the World Cup this past summer, where Italy beat France in penalty kicks (and Zinedine Zidane made the Headbutt Heard ‘Round the World) and there was a group of loud and possibly drunk Italians still celebrating the win by waving flags and singing their national anthem at top volume.

After several train changes, we made our way back to Unter den Linden to see the Reichstag, this time from the inside. The renovated Reichstag has a cool dome on the top and roof terrace which we wandered around on and took pictures from. There is also an overpriced café on the terrace, where we ate a light snack (would have been lunch but by this time it was nearly dinner hour). After that I came back to the hostel and packed up my luggage and made a quick internet stop (at 4E/hour it could only be quick) and went to bed early as we had to be up at 5 the next morning to fly home.

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