Munich, Berlin, and home

Introduction and Itinerary   Quincy to Berlin   Obernfeld and Duderstadt   Weratal Radweg   Schärding and the Inntal   Passau   Danube Bike & Barge: Day 1   Danube Bike & Barge: Day 2   Danube Bike & Barge: Day 3   Danube Bike & Barge: Day 4   Danube Bike & Barge: Day 5 plus Vienna   Danube Bike & Barge: Days 6 & 7   Munich, Berlin, and home      Return to Main Page

We had seen enough of Passau prior to the cruise, so we took the first train to Munich, where we would kill time until the 10:30PM overnight train back to Berlin.
By the time we got off the train at Munich's main station, it was obvious that something was going on. Or maybe not. Maybe it's usual for hoards of people to make their way to central Munich on a Saturday afternoon. In any event it was slow going through the Fußgängerzone (pedestrian zone) towards Marienplatz because of the crowds.
A refuge from the crowd in the Bürgersaalkirche, one of several fascinating Baroque churches between the train station and vittles market.
Eventually we'd had enough of the crowds and heat and headed for one of my favorite places in Munich, the Viktualienmarkt (vittles market) beyond the old Rathaus, looking for something to eat and drink. It's a food market with a large, shady picnic area in the center. Unfortunately, every seat at every table was taken. Not willing to eat standing up and lacking any better plan, we plowed through the crowd in the direction of the train station.
On the way back we passed the Galleria Kaufhof München Am Stachus, a department store, that had a sign indicating a restaurant on an upper floor. So we had supper and hung out waiting for train time in the cool, quiet spot. A bonus was an excellent view of the city.
Finally, it was time to board our CityNiteLine train for Berlin Zoo Station; and I learned something new. Since there were four of us, I had booked a couchette for 4. But when we reached our compartment, there were the usual 6 bunks; and I pictured two others joining us. But on closer inspection, I realized that the middle two bunks had been raised to where they were touching the top bunks. This effectively created a four bunk room out of 6. In any event, I got a good nights sleep and woke up not far from Zoo Station.

I had booked the high class Wyndham Berlin Excelsior Hotel because it was only a few blocks from Zoo station and was only $80 on hotel.com. Despite the early hour, we were able to get into one of the rooms immediately, but only after a real strange look from the desk clerk when he saw the rate on the reservation.

Janelle and Marcia wanted to try the hop on, hop off tour bus. But since we had done plenty of that in 2007, we opted to rent bikes from near Zoo station and get some exercise.
View from our hotel room.
The bike rental shop was close to the hugh Tiergarten park; so we rode through it towards Brandenburg Gate.
Queen Luise statue in the Tiergarten
A nice rest stop in the Tiergarten
An unknown plaza between the Tiergarten and Brandenburg Gate.
Berliner Dom (Protestant Cathedral) with Fernsehturm (television tower) at Alexanderplatz in the background
In the early evening we met up with Janelle and Marcia for supper at a Gaststätte (a traditional neighborhood restaurant similar to an Austrian Gasthaus) near the hotel. It was a pleasant change from Turkish Döner Kebabs we usually get in Berlin.

The trip home the next day was uneventful except for one thing. We had the misfortune to wind up in the last row on the plane where the seats did not recline, although those in the row in front of us did. There was no room to hold a book or put the tray table down. It was torture; and Jeanine swore she would never go to Europe again. We'll see.
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