And lots of eating!
This morning we slept in a bit and headed to the Orange Cafe across the street for a light breakfast. I really needed fruit so I got yogurt with fruit and Michelle had a croissant and we both had tea. It was a really nice breakfast and the yogurt was really good but really tart. They also use fruits you don't expect.
We then walked over to Museum Island which is literally a 10 minute walk from our hotel. With our pass, we get all 5 museums but we made realistic goals to see the most famous, Pergamon, museum and the Neues Museum (houses mostly Egyptian and prehistoric artifacts). I really think these museums are worth visiting. The Pergamon museum has the most largest reconstructions of ancient places. The history, replicas, and artifacts were interesting and the audio guide was very helpful. They are renovating though so we missed some of the wings of the museum. We then ate at Gran Cafe which is right on the other side of the River Spree. We had a delicious pesto and mozzarella and tomato sandwich with goulash soup on the side. Both were simple and delicious.
Babylon gate (only replicated the SMALLER of the 2 gates -- I wish I could have seen the real thing!)
market Gate of Miletus (Stunning and shocking because 60% of this is real!)
Fueled, we headed to the Neues Museum is interestingly enough a museum of a museum as well as the Egyptian and prehistoric history. The museum was bombed in WWII and most of what was built for the museum in the early 1900s has been destroyed, but when you walk around you can notice the incredible paintings (granted not 100%) and beautiful archways that were originally intended to serve as a backdrop to the collected works. The coolest thing in the Neues museum is the bust of Nefertiti which is remarkable and super intricate, but you are not allowed to take pictures of it.
We also visited the Humboldt box which is a tourist attraction for donations for restoration of the palace on museum island. It is completely free and the views on top are amazing.
We then headed to the East Side Gallery to view the longest preserved part of the Berlin Wall. It was saved so that artists from around the world could display paintings and murals on it as a reminder of what happened. The gallery is awe inspiring and powerful. The only irony is that to preserve the paintings they put a fence around a previous fence. I really enjoyed looking at the interpretations artists had on their piece of artwork and even the graffiti that overlay some of it was clearly an expression of current and past times.
We then headed to Fassbender and Rausch because we were told it was the Willy Wonka of Germany. The chocolate is delicious here and they have really awesome chocolate carvings you can check out. I picked up some chocolate for me and for home. We then continued shopping by heading back to Alexander platz and exploring Alexa shopping center again (which apparently has 180 shops). It's a really big mall, but mainly I desperately wanted to buy a new Naketano (German brand) hoodie because I love the current one I own and they don't sell many in the states. We finished shopping and headed straight to dinner.
We decided to have our last German dinner be, well, German, so we walked over to Zer Letzen Instanz. This place apparently served Napoleon Bonaparte and was started in 1621, making it the oldest restaurant in Berlin. We ordered the 2 most recommended dishes: the pork knuckle with red cabbage (the pork was way more tender than Hofbrauhaus and the cabbage, although salty, was the perfect pairing with the pork meat -- and of course the skin was crispy and delicious) and the meatballs on mashed potatoes (mashed potatoes were my favorite of the meal but the meatball was just ok for me). We washed it all down with beer and chased it with apple pie a la mode (to cap off German adventures).
We then convinced ourselves that we needed a proper kebap and headed back to Mustafa's Gemuse Kebaps and ordered one doner kebap to share. WE DID NOT REGRET THIS DECISION at all despite our already full bellies and swollen and tired feet. YOU NEED to try this kebap. The meat is cut straight of the firepit like taco trucks in LA. They put lots of meat and the veggies are plentiful and the combination is really flavorful!!! It was also only 3,50 Euro!