berlin

5/9/17 - after another breakfast at coffee & cookies we decided that the main target of the day would be the jewish museum which was not far from the hotel - i remember seeing it from the outside back in 2008 but did not have time to visit this museum housed in liebeskind's iconic building

on the way from the hotel we passed a preserved section of berlin wall - this picture showing the bear and group of people was taken through a large hole in the preserved section - there was a lot of rusty rebar showing in the holes - the exhibit is called topographie des terrors http://www.topographie.de/

just across the road from the preserved wall was the welt balloon with trabant tours on offer as well

another look at those pink pipes at checkpoint charlie before heading towards the jewish museum

luckily the jewish museum was not too busy and there was no queue to get in - the museum is entered via the basement - the basement is arranged via 3 axis - exile holocaust and continuity with a holocaust tower at the end of one axis - a tall dark bare concrete silo with a small window at the top - at the end of the axis of exile was the garden of exile made up of 49 concrete columns in a 7x7 grid - all the floors in the basement have a slop of a few degrees to add to the feeling of uneasiness

more photos of the basement area

the photo below shows the holocaust tower - looking straight up - it was extremely dark so taking this shot was not easy and required a long shutter speed and steady hand

after looking round the basement area there was an impressive staircase leading to the top floor of the museum

the museum has a number of "voids" built into it and it is quite maze like and disorientating but you get odd glimpses of other parts of the museum through gaps in the concrete structure - the gap shows part of the staircase well

looking through one of the voids in the structure through a narrow window towards another narrow window at the other side of the void

even the interior stairwells used to get down through the floors were works of art in their own right with specially designed windows at odd jagged angles

this is an area under a set of stairs where you can watch old historic cartoons while kneeling on the floor

a gallery showing various portraits - note the signature liebeskind windows allowing in just enough light

this concrete void runs the full height of the museum and has been filled with face shaped metal objects - i have seen pictures of people walking on these faces but there did not seem to be any public access at the time - it is know as the memory void and the installation is called fallen leaves by menashe kadishman and has over 10000 faces https://www.jmberlin.de/en/shalekhet-fallen-leaves

generally a very good museum and well worth a visit - the location is slightly off the beaten track in an inner suburb known as kreuzberg and we decided to walk down to the landwehr canal but the area round the canal did not seem very nice so we got the u6 from hallesches tor to franzosische strabe in search of some beer

after some refreshments to berliner dom was the next target of the day - there was a handy 'city toilet" next to the dom which had a very odd floor which went down a couple of inches when you trod on it - presumably so the toilet can sense when someone is using it and then clean it after

the dom itself was very impressive and had a series of walkways and stairwells that took you first to an internal viewing gallery and then onto a higher external viewing gallery - the stairs start broad and grand and at each level get narrower and more basic - this walkway goes all the way round the inside of the dome and was quite deserted and had very heavy doors every few yards which slammed shut creating a loud echo

the views from the viewing gallery were good and very different from the high gallery at the tv tower - in the above photo you can see that there are some low hills in the suburbs beyond the tv tower and park inn hotel but from the tv tower everything just looked flat as you were looking down onto everything from such a height

view from the berliner dom to the west towards the mitte district

there are a lot of stairs to navigate to get from the top of the berliner dom back to street level

one last shot of our local ubahn station at anhalter strabe

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