Berlin is big, too big I think. From the ZOB, the “Central” Bus Station, it took me nearly two hours to navigate through the public transport system. But ultimately I made it to my hostel.
Having met my new roommates I set out in search of food. The last time I ate anything was nearly 24 hrs previous so it was rather necessary I get something to fill a hole. I wandered around the local area until I found a small-time burger joint. After stuffing my face I headed back to the hostel and ended up meeting a group and we ventured out to a bar and club. I ended up bailing before the club so I could get some well needed rest.
Turns out I really needed the sleep as I didn’t wake up until about 12pm, thereby missing the walking tour in the morning. Instead, I made my own walking tour around the local area.
The East Side Gallery was my primary goal. Just on the bank of the river Spree is a section of the Berlin Wall and it has been decorated with graffiti from 118 different artists; both German and international (29 countries in total). Unfortunately, some people have taken it upon themselves to decorate some areas with their own marking which decreased the artistic strive some pieces contained. In some areas it was very similar to the John Lennon Wall in Prague as it was promoting a peaceful and positive agenda.
After walking for almost 1km following this wall I took off at the end and headed north. The Eastern side of town is pretty derelict and doesn’t offer much in the way of attraction but I did find myself walking back toward the hostel. Instead of going back in, I decided to wander around the local area and ended up in a strange commune area.
In a similar vein to Copenhagen’s Christiania, it’s a walled compound that houses a variety of buildings usually made from gazebos, shipping containers and caravans. At night it’s a bit of a party district with about 3 bars in the vicinity but during the day it’s empty and shows very little signs of life.
After exploring this little area, I headed back to my bed as I felt rather under the weather. I ended up sleeping until the next morning but when I awoke I felt a lot better and fully refreshed!