Saturday, March 7, 2009

Berlin: Friday 6th March

It was a trip out to Potsdam today. Potsdam is 25km from the centre of Berlin and easily reached via the S-Bahn. It was raining lightly as we wandered through the town centre itself heading out to Palace Sansoucci, a palace of Frederick the Great. It is set in the centre of some magnificent formal gardens. Almost all the statues had wooden shed like structures for the winter protection. One wonders what was underneath.

The garden approach and close to the palace

Thw guide describes the approach from the gardens as Rococo – opulent playful and light, whereas the rear entrance is more restrained with a double colonnades in a semi-circle.

We decided not to go in (even though this palace is compared with Versailles), mainly due to the large groups of school children and the fact we had had a major injection of royal palaces yesterday.

Just what a palace needs - a windmill
We headed back to Berlin and went to Hackescher Markt where there is the Höfe Complex - a labyrinth of restored alleyways leading to courtyards with cafés, restaurants, boutiques and art galleries We then wandered around to Alexander Platz the centre of the former east Berlin and where the large Fernseher Turm (Television tower) is situated. Lots of funky stores radiating out from the Platz, but the Platz itself a bit depressing.

We are flying to St Petersburg tomorrow - expected to be -3 degrees

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