It’s a fact: I love sports and working out. Everybody knows this. There is something about breaking a sweat and pushing myself to the limit that I can’t get enough of.And what I really really can’t get enough of are the summer Olympics. I can think back to so may times when during the olympic games I have been motivated to eat healthier, set more ambitious goals, and get much more out of my workout. During my third day in Berlin, and having checked most of the items on my Berlin bucket list, I found out by chance that I was a quick train ride away from the Olympic stadium! How did I not know this?!
The history of it is beautiful too. The 1936 summer Olympics were held in this stadium, and were actually inaugurated by the head-of-state, a man by the name of Adolf Hitler. At the time of the games Hitler was really excited about the world being able to witness the height of arian supremacy.
Long story short, Jesse Owens, an african-american athlete, won 4 gold medals and successfully proved all them racist whiteys wrong! So there!!
The 2006 World Cup final was also held at the Olympiastadion. As you may remember, that was also the game where soccer legend Zinedine Zidane played his very last game, and tainted his reputation by giving the infamous head-butt to Italian player Marco Materazzi. Again, making sports history… even if it wasn’t for the most noble reasons.
But of course, the biggest thing about visiting the Olympiastadion is the wide array of feelings you get while walking around knowing everything that has happened within it’s walls, on it’s grass, and under it’s sky. And maybe even more so if you stop to think about everything that is to come.
Day 2 in Berlin started out with a clear plan. We were going to catch a tourist bus and get the general layout of the city. We would also visit the Reichstag building, walk around the Tiergarten park, and end the day by viewing the city lights while having dinner at the 368m high and rotating restaurant atop the Fernsehtum TV tower. As fate would have it, we didn’t exactly set off to an early start to the day. To make matters worse, one little photographer simply had to stop by Starbucks… and I failed to figure out exactly where the bus stops were. Picture us in downtown Berlin constantly seeing buses go by and having to idea where they are even coming from. So we skipped on the bus ride and stood in line to get tickets to visit the Reichstag. And we stood. And we stood. And then there was some more standing. When we were finally next in line Charlie asked me to take out my photo ID, and wouldn’t you know it? I left it all at the hotel! But after a quick talk with the helpful clerk we were actually able to go pick it up at the hotel and visit later on in the day.
The architecture at the Reichstag totally blew me away. We visited during sunset and it was an amazing time to capture all the light and shadows highlighting of the glass dome and the city views. If you visit it, and I think you should, I highly recommend visiting it at this time.
Berlin Bucket List #7 Reichstag
Berlin Bucket List #8: Tiergarten Park.
I kept hearing that the park is a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Berlin. The perfect place to add a small hiatus or break to your day. Not actually when we were there… apparently it was during a weekend-long music festival. But it made people watching and the walk in general all the more interesting.
Berlin Bucket List #9: Dinner at the Fernsehturm
After a walk around the city we found our way to the TV tower. I remember laughing when the elevator lady proudly told us that it was the fastest elevator in europe. It just seems like such a german thing to boast about. Apparently it travels 204 meters in just 45 seconds. In Spain I regularly ride on an elevator that takes about 35 seconds just to take me to the 7th floor. No biggie.
The view was amazing though. You can see all the city lights, and while you have dinner at the restaurant you are slowly moving 360º. They even have markers on the glass walls to show you what lies below. The food was amazing too, and all-in-all I would definitely recommend it to anyone visiting Berlin.
After a delicious dinner and a great day walking around we slowly went back to the hotel for some much-needed rest before heading out the next day for our last day of exploring!
Two years went by and I kept hearing from numerous accounts all about how amazing Berlin was. The culture, the history, and the feel to the city was what everyone kept raving about. It was at about that time that I decided to add visiting it to my bucket list. Fast forward to this August and I finally had a chance to do just that. I teamed up with my friend Charlie and we spent a couple days hitting all the must-see spots. All I can say is everyone was right. The atmosphere is amazing. So consider my next few posts to be a small collection of photos taken here and there in order to try to capture it.
Berlin Bucket List #1: Checkpoint Charlie
Berlin Bucket List #2: Holocaust Memorial
Berlin Bucket List #3: Bradenburg Gate
Berlin Bucket List #4: Try German Beer. (Gross!)
Berlin Bucket List #5: Photowalk
Berlin Bucket List #6: Dinner in the dark.
(If you haven’t done this, try it! Most hilarious and eye-opening experience ever!)