So, I went to Berlin for 4 days. Saturday, I had an early flight and had to leave home about 3am. I made it into the city towards midday.
The New SynagogWhat's the name of that place where souls go to wait? Perg... perga...? Oh, yeah, the queue outside the Pergamon Museum. I don't know if my soul was cleansed, but it got a good wash in the drizzle.
In the middle of Berlin is Museuminsel (Museum Island), which has 5 great museums in a small area. In their Empire days the Germans, like the British, did a pretty good job looting some stonking ancient artifacts from the rest of the world. It takes some serious balls to steal one of the wonders of the world. The most special items at the Pergamon Museum are:
The Pergamon Altar (2200 years old)
The Market Gate of Miletus (1900 years old)
The Ishtar Gate (2500 years old)
The Ishtar Gate was the best. It's from Babylon, made of glazed blue bricks, and has a matching walled road that leads up to it. By the way, did you know that the US military used the site of Babylon in Iraq as a base, and a helicopter knocked down some of the remaining ruins?
I sat on the Pergamon Altar and was told off, so I wandered into the next room and leant against the Miletus Gate and was told off again. So New Zealanders aren't allowed there any more, but you should've gone because it was really cool.
As dusk was falling, I headed north to Humboldthain. Hidden in a park there is a WWII bomb shelter, built to hold 18,000 people and to be largely indestructable, which explains why it is still there: It withstood serveral attempts to blow it up after the war. The large platforms on top held heavy anti-aircraft guns, and small guns were lower down.
To get there, I had to walk through a heavily wooded park in the gloom and then climb up a small hill through the trees. It was desserted and fairly creepy. But it did offer a good view out over the city.