Berlin is terrific. It's really difficult to describe this city. Indeed it's necessary much more than one week to get to know all attractions this city can offer.
When any report is done about this city and it is referred as a real open plot of works this is a true fact. I've never seen so many guindasts in only one city! In the city's landscape is impossible to not notice a building in execution with at least three or four guindasts around it.
The German Parliament (Reichstag) and its beautiful glass dome are something that we can't lose seeing. In the dome's interior there is a glass board where all building's history is reported. This dome works in an interesting way: all the air generated by the parliament comes out by its top and its lateral entrances allow that new air comes in. A different system of air recirculation. And the best: the visitation to the dome is charge free. It's not for nothing that there is an enormous roll in front of the building!
The big tv tower - Fernsehturm. The enormous Berlin Cathedral (Berliner Dom). The imposing Brandenburg Gate. The victory column - SiegessÃ¤ule, which was located before in the gardens in front of the German Parliament. The beautiful Tiergarten ("Animals Garden"), with the Berlin zoo inserted in it, is the favorite place for resting and leisure in Berlin. The famous Checkpoint Charlie museum, which tells histories of frustrated or successful tries in running away from the communist regime by jumping over the Berlin wall. This museum also has in its entrance a nice map showing how Berlin city was divided by the wall. In the street where this museum is placed, there is a plate where was in the past the customs. At one side of the plate is shown a Russian soldier representing that you are leaving the American or capitalist sector. In the other side of the plate there is an American soldier representing that you are leaving the Russian or communist sector. And what have I found in front of the museum? The Trabant! This was the unique car that existed in the communist sector. It was produced with the government's permission. If you wanted a car that time, you should inform the government and make the application. This way you would win the car. This would be perfect except if the waiting for a car wouldn't be more than 10 years! Exactly! With the telephone was the same: over 5 years of waiting.
The famous broken church, almost destroyed in the Second World War - Kaiser Wilhelm GedÃ¤chniskirche (Church in memory of emperor Wilhelm), and its interior with damaged paintings. This church wasn't rebuilt to stay as a memory of what a war is capable to do to people. The well-known Kurfürsten Damm street, or the Kudamm abbreviation for the Berlin inhabitants. There is located the famous department store Ka De We, which sells the most famous (and expensive) brands of the world.
Another place Brazilians must visit is the Hellersdorf district. It was completely rebuilt by a Brazilian architect who won a concurrence whose goal was to bring to that district a more colored and happy environment. This they did really well. The tiles were drawn by Brazilian Indian women who live at Bodoquena Sierra, in Mato Grosso do Sul State. There is a plate in homage to them there. It's worth a visit!
Each place you visit, each street you pass through, each building you see, has something that calls your attention and you even stop a while to look carefully to each detail.
When I came to Berlin for the first time, I arrived at the east train station - Ostbahnhof. I stayed in the apartment of Ronaldo's cousin. This apartment was in one of those really old buildings of the old communist side. It was a really interesting apartment, especially because of the improvised shower cabin in the kitchen. In other times, bathrooms were collective and were located at the ground floor. Hmmmm, I guess this is a proof that Germans never liked to take a shower indeed!
In the second time I came to Berlin I stayed in a really nice independent hostel (independent because it doesn't belong to the agency of youth hostels). As I went in the main vacations season and there weren't vacancies in the accredited youth hostels, I hurried up to find another alternative in Internet. I guess it was the nicest thing I did! The Globetrotter Hostel Odyssee is really genial, alternative and different, with bathtubs that became vases for plants, with a leg's prosthesis that became a vase welcoming visitors, and a funny car with horns and cowskin-color painted! The walls of the rooms were painted with really intense and merry colors and drawings. Who organizes and takes care of everything is the owners themselves. Their homepage address is in the Favorites section.
The most impressive things in Germany are the punctuality and the perfect trains coordination. Each train station (Bahnhof) has a travel center (Reisezentrum) with also English-speaking attendants. The picture shows the travel center of Berlin. It's only pack your luggage and go into the world, literally. No worries once you are always well assisted.