What to do in Berlin, you ask? Have fun, and don’t get caught! There’s visiting the Reichstag (and take some golf balls: I’ve got a dare for you), sneaking into an unassuming bank building that belies a suprise interior, a picnic in the Lustgarten and then some cathedral crashing.
Home to Germany’s parliament, the Reichstag was opened in 1894, suffered damage and destruction for decades and was rebuilt in the 1990’s. Go early (it opens at 8:00 daily) to avoid the worst lines.
Once inside, you’ll walk a spiraled ramp hugging the perimeter of a glass dome (representing transparency in government) to be treated to an unparalleled 360-degree view of Berlin at the top.
Now here’s your mission, if you choose to accept it. GOLF BALLS! Oh, how I yearned to have a handful of golf balls to toss down the ramp to see if they’d roll all the way to the bottom. I asked one of the INFORMATION guys if anyone had ever attempted.
“Never,” he replied stoically, revealing all the gaity and sense of humor for which Germans are famous.
DZ BANK BUILDING
Once you’ve completed your Reichstag mission, head to Brandenburg Gate (an easy walk), check it out for a minute, then walk through to the Pariser Platz square, which usually teems with people, but no one pays attention to the innocuous DZ Bank building, number 3, rectangular and staid, blending innocently enough into the surroundings, easily overlooked. Act like you know what you’re doing and that you belong there, and sneak past the guards for a quick look inside.
Your reward: a towering, curvaceous carp formed from titanium and glass as only Frank O. Gehry can design. Now take you picture (mine below) and get the hell out!
You packed a gourmet lunch with your purchases from the KDW food hall yesterday, right? Well, walk to Museum Island and enjoy a picnic in the Lustgarten (Pleasure Garden). Nosh, watch Berliners at rest and play, and get in some good lusting.
Viewing is allowed during scheduled hours, but not during services. But in the spirit of today’s adventures, why let that stop you?