My first trip to Germany and the second time to Europe. It’s always very exciting to see other cultures and travel around. So many things to see and experience. This post gives a summary of my trip which was in May 2013.
The smoking rules aren’t strict like here in Vancouver, so those that are sensitive may have issues, and I have heard from friends that that was their complaint. Although I hear that the water system is pristine in Germany – as with many things in Germany, I didn’t drink any tap water as I have heard bad experiences with drinking tap water in Europe. Although it was probably safe in Germany, I didn’t want to take any risk on my vacation. I know myself that I have an extremely weak stomach and immune system, so I stuck to bottled water or my new favourite drink Apfelschorle also Apfelsaftschorle. (apple juice with soda).
In Bavaria, there were hardly any kids and lots of seniors around, and was interesting to see disappearing or empty towns. The oddest thing is that they were well kept and looked tidy, as if there was a caretaker for the almost abandoned towns.
It rained many of the days we were there, and a bit chilly compared to friends that went the year before. I don’t have experience pollen allergy here in Canada, but I do seem to have a bit in Germany (I know I have it in Japan). It was hard to find free Wi-Fi sometimes – Starbucks became your friend at these times Paying to go to the toilet was a bit of nuisance… some were more secure than getting aboard a plane… Cakes were really sweet, and I kept having sugar crashes.
I enjoyed Numberg the most. The most memorable. Historical and what you expected European cities to look like. Beautiful place yo visit on sunny weekend with Small markets. Good souvenirs shops and cafe. But you can always count on McDonald or Starbucks if ever in doubt. very tourist location.
East Berlin had grafitti everywhere. The buildings looked old and uncared for. Seems like some were falling apart, or weren’t even inhabited though that wasn’t the case. I noticed there were quite a number of mothers with infants, otherwise it was quiet and deserted for the most part. Berlin overall was significantly cheaper, especially in the east. A plate of Asian noodles was 2.50 Euros. For most travelers or those packaged tours, you rarely get to see the East side. I was fortunate to see the ‘real’ side but even Sheepie was reluctant to go as it’s not really the safest part of the city to go to. I did see quite a number of skin heads or gang looking people. I don’t recommend going unless you know your way around.
West Berlin on the other hand seemed like a modern city. Lively with your typical malls, restaurants, stores and lots of people – foreign travelers in the main attraction areas. All day pass for Berlin transit is 6.50 Euro – a great way of going around to places without having to buy a ticket every time, or worrying about expired tickets.
Spent the least time here, but we did visit the famous The Glockenspiel (clock tower). We didn’t do a whole lot of sightseeing as we were in town to meet Sheepie’s relatives and friends. So instead, I did get to see how Germans lived. All homes that I went to in Germany had the powder room at the entrance of the house. All houses are made of stone, though the inside could be a mixture of stone or wood. All of them were kept well and clean.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see much of Frankfurt except for the airport x_x
We experienced some heavy rainfalls, and even some floods on the roads. We saw later on in the news when we got home to Vancouver that the situation had gotten much worse, so good timing! I wished I had know a little bit more German than the simple ‘hello’ and ‘thank you’ as we spent a great deal with Sheepie’s relatives, friends and co-workers. I have been trying to learn more, more but quite difficult when you don’t live in Germany.