Sunday, July 17, 2011

Beat the Summer Heat in Berlin

Summers in Berlin can be hot. Here are some places to go to escape the heat.

Sowjetische Ehrendenkmal (Soviet Remembrance Memorial)

Thousands of Russian soldiers died in WWII's battle for Berlin. The Sowjetische Ehrendenkmal in Treptower Park commemorates the fallen with a huge and sobering monument. At one end of a tree-lined avenue is the statute of Mother Russia weeping for her lost sons. At the other end of the memorial is a huge statute of a Soviet soldier holding a child in one arm and destroying the Swastika with the other. This place is always a few degrees cooler than the rest of the city. It's a great place for an afternoon stroll at any time of the year. And one big plus: it's seldom crowded except for the occasional Russian tour bus. I often visit the nearby beer garden and then stop here for a lazy read or nap.

Müggelsee and Wannsee

Müggelsee Beer Garden
Berlin is surrounded by numerous lakes, forests and rivers. The Müggelsee and Wannsee are two lakes where Berliners go for summer fun. The Müggelsee is east Berlin's water sports playground. There's sailing, swimming, and Windsurfing. The Wannsee is west Berlin's equivalent. Both are crowded on the weekends so get there early. They are easily accessible by public transport or bicycle. Be cautious during July and August since the water at both places has been known to contain high levels of bacteria. 
Crowded Weekend at Wannsee

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