I have professed my love of spas many times before, so you may already be well aware of how much I love living in a country who appreciates a good thermal bath. We used to live a half an hour from Baden Baden, which is one of those most famous spa towns in Germany with two thermal baths, Caracalla and Friedrichsbad, both of which I love. We went to the Caracalla often, whenever a few hours lounging around in thermal pools sounded like a good idea. When I lived in San Francisco, I lived down the street from the Kabuki Springs, a wonderful Japanese spa- if you go, get a shiatsu massage and then enjoy the pools, trust me- it is amazing :)
Yesterday was my birthday, which admittedly I wasn’t too keen on celebrating this year. Nevertheless, Andreas made it a really lovely day spoiling me rotten and we ended the day at Liquidrom, a spa near Potsdamer Platz. The main feature is a large salt water pool where music is played under water in which you float almost weightlessly and all the stresses of life seem to just wash away. They have DJs once a week as well as a classical music night- last night was a mix of music ranging from Edith Piaf to down tempo stuff. In addition to the pool, they have a fabulous steam room and multiple saunas (although be warned they are not for the modest as the Germans apparently have a love of nudity- swimsuits are notallowed in the sauna or steam room, but required for the pool). It was exactly what I needed after a very busy past few months and I realized how much I have missed a spontaneous trip to the spa since we moved to Berlin- we will definitely be back.
The Prater Garten has quickly become one of our favorite spots to relax after a work day and catch up with friends over a beer. Prater is Berlin’s oldest biergarten, serving beer on Kastanienallee in Prenzlauer Berg since 1837. I think the food is far better than most biergartens, with lots of options beyond the usual bratwurst fare- and corn on the cob is always a winner in my book. Surely with the lovely summer weather we have had here in Berlin lately, we will be spending many more lazy evenings at Prater.
exploring berlin is a series following my favorite discoveries around my new home city.
can you find us??
You might already know this, but I am allergic to most tourist hot spots. Seriously. I get a bit queasy, dizzy and anxious when surrounded by throngs of tourists- and if you knew where my apartment stood, this would make you laugh since I live in the tourist epicenter of Berlin (and yes, I sometimes wonder why). Usually when I travel I avoid most of the places in tourist books or soak up the landmarks as quickly as possible and then find solace roaming streets off the beaten path.
One thing that does not bother me is free tourist attractions- especially those that do not require you to stand in line. :) So when I saw this post on Travels of Adam, I immediately made a reservation to visit the Dome of the Reichstag (the German Parliament building) for the following week when my oldest friend, Caroline, would be visiting Berlin. I thought even if it wasn’t amazing, at least it would be free, right? My expectations were low before our visit, but it beat paying the 13€ to go to the top of the Fernsehturm, which seems like a crazy amount of money to take an elevator. Admittedly it was pretty cool, offered great views of the city and was informative- I said to myself several times: “oh that’s what that building is..”about places I pass several times a week. The dome itself is quite picturesque, and was designed by Norman Foster after the capital was relocated to Berlin in 1999 after the reunification of Germany. It does require a bit of planning, as you must pre-register all guests online in advance- but I would say well worth the 5 minutes online you will spend securing a spot to visit.
All these 4 days weeks in May have spoiled me, but I am so happy it is already Friday! Do you have big plans for the weekend?
exploring berlin is a series detailing my explorations of my new home city.