The day started off with a much-needed visit to the Waschsalon [laundromat]. Getting around Berlin isn’t the most difficult thing in the world, but it’s not easy with a suitcase full of laundry. On multiple occasions, Google maps has been my savior (especially because it helps you navigate public transit, of which there’s quite a lot in Berlin). I spent the morning washing, drying, and folding, but the afternoon I planned makes up for that.
I visited the Reichstag building in the heart of Berlin. The glass dome is a pretty good deal for free-entry. You get a great view of the city and a chance to be at the center of the German government. The audioguide for the dome is kind of unreliable and spotty (at best), but when it works it points out some great landmarks viewable from the dome. After I left the Reichstag, I was greeted by crowds, police and excitement in the streets. Queen Elizabeth visited today and her motorcade made a short stop at the British embassy near the Brandenburg gate. I, for one, wasn’t very interested and tried to wander around the area despite the large crowds. The tourist scene near the Reichstag isn’t very big–good, cheap restaurants are hard to come by, and I settled for some overpriced Italian lasagna for lunch at a place called Sagrantino.
Afterwards, it was back to Alexanderplatz for a visit to the top of the TV-tower. The trip is a bit pricey, but the experience is worth it. If you feel like splurging like I did, a trip to the turning restaurant does the trick. There are few things you can do to spoil yourself like enjoying a gin and tonic atop a tall structure. For dinner, I had salmon with pasta, spinach, and peppers. Again, a bit pricey, but it was worth it for the view.