Sean and I flew out to meet his parents and cousins for Easter in Berlin…well, for football in Berlin that just happened to be the same weekend as Easter. England was playing Germany in a friendly on Saturday night, so we arrived Friday afternoon and made a weekend out of it.
Upon arrival, we did what any good tourist in Germany should do and got straight to the sausages and steins at Hofbrau Berlin. As touristy as it is, I have loved every Hofbrauhaus I’ve been to – you’re guaranteed great beer, pure entertainment, and a real beer hall experience.
Afterwards, we got a bit too overexcited and continued with the drinking at a hostel bar nearby. After a few pints and one jaeger bomb (that’s one jaeger bomb too many, by the way) we stumbled home to get some rest before exploring Berlin the next day.
Oh – what great exploring we did on Saturday! It consisted of sleeping until about noon, busing across town to pick up our tickets for the match, busing back to take a nap, and then heading out to get food before the match. I’m proud to say I held myself pretty well, but Sean was not in the best form so we laid low and pushed all of our tourism to Sunday.
The match itself was by far the best part of the weekend. We were all fully rested and back to ourselves by then and the atmosphere was phenomenal. Throw in an amazing comeback that brought England down 2-0 to win 3-2 and you’ve got the best evening ever! Everybody has been saying I’ve peaked too soon witnessing the best England match I’ll probably ever see this soon in my England supporting career. But oh well, it was worth it!
On Sunday, we tried to cram in as much of Berlin as possible. Since I had been before, I led the group to all of the sites I knew, including Brandenburger Gate, the Holocaust Memorial, Museum Island, East Side Gallery (the wall), and…Burgermeister – the best attraction of all! After stuffing our faces with burgers and walking a bit more of the wall, we headed back for a quick drink. Sean and I wanted to go to the top of the TV Tower before leaving, so we headed up to see all of Berlin and then headed back down to retrieve our bags and get to the airport.
[I love the contrast in this picture – on the right, modern, financial, gray Berlin; on the left, historic and beautiful red roofs]
Berlin is a great city with a mix of new and old, traditional and alternative, incredible history and a young up and coming crowd. Seeing it all from up above was a great way to end the trip that gave us such a great weekend! However, reaching the bottom of the tower was the moment things started to go downhill, leading to quite an eventful night trying to get home. There will be a whole separate post on the misery we experienced flying in and out of Berlin this past weekend, so keep an eye out!
Unfortunately East Side Gallery was mostly fenced off, but a snuck some pictures through the fence, which is why they are so close up: