I read all four Mass Effect novels whilst away and would definitely recommend them. They cured my gaming itch.
My first day back home; a shedload of photos to sort out, sunshine, beer and home comforts. Not to mention the latest episode of The Walking Dead game, which was only released two days ago - it was waiting for me!
Our journey concludes at this momentous landmark; a gorgeous way to spend our last night. This past month has been the best of my life, and the travelling bug has settled in. I can’t wait to spend similar future months living out of one bag and seeking other places the world has to offer. #paris #interrail (at Eiffel Tower)
Le Louvre / Day 31
Some of my highlights from today!
1. The Seated Scribe
2. Apollo Gallery
3. The Pyramid Entrance
4. Virgin of the Rocks
5. Michelangelo’s Captive
So apparently, Paris is one hilly city. We’re staying near Montmartre, a district close to the highest point in Paris; great for big backpacks. The location is probably the best thing about this hostel (the other aspects are mediocre) seeing as we walked to the Montmartre steps and the beautiful church of Sacre-Coeur in ten minutes.
Working our way backwards through areas of Europe has been eye-opening; it’s insightful witnessing how elements are slowly built upon and familiarity begins to set in. The contrast between a city like Athens and those of Berlin and Paris is great - there’s not a McDonald’s or a Subway around the majority of corners. And whilst I love a veggie patty sub, it’s been quite impacting seeing these conglomerates emerge as we settle where the money is. And I wholeheartedly miss the little souvlaki joint round the corner from our Athens hostel.
Easing back into familiarity has it’s good and bad sides - coming from a city like Berlin, which is wonderfully clean and everyone waits patiently for the green man to signal a safe crossing over the road made adjustment necessary once we arrived in Paris; it’s comparatively very, very dirty, has a much more meandering street design and a brilliant, easy-to-follow metro system. It does feel like we’re close to our own capital.
That little rectangle on the far right? That’d be the Mona Lisa. I think I’m more intrigued by this show of human behaviour… #paris #interrail (at Musée du Louvre)
A proper smile?! The Louvre surpassed my expectations - eight hours later and we still couldn’t see it all. #paris #interrail (at Musée du Louvre)
Hello Paris! Notre Dame down, Louvre and the Tower to go. #paris #interrail (at Palais de Justice, Paris)
We concluded our time in Berlin with a late trip to the Reichstag - including the wonderful glass dome constructed on its top. The views were a great way to say bye! #berlin #interrail (at Bundestag)
The Berlin Reichstag / Day 27
At 10pm on our last night in Berlin we visited what you could say is the most representative sight in the city - the reichstag building, famous for its presence in dark stages of Germany’s history and it’s ongoing role as seat of Germany’s parliament.
Its significance in the rise of the nazi party is acknowledged and taught in every school (at least in the UK!) and seeing the building that was burned down in 1933 up close was pretty dominating. It’s far bigger than I imagined it to be! (especially if you walk towards the back of it, rather than the front entrance - whoops.)
This immense building is topped by a really noticeable feature - a glass dome built in 1999. Our initial reaction.. Was a raised eyebrow. It looks plain odd from a distance. There’s this encroaching, strongly-shaped mass with an ultra-modern design popped on its roof, and it just seems to be so ill-fitting.
Until you get to the roof. :D
It’s one of my favourite pieces of architecture we’ve come across, and the staff and layout are so efficient that it makes for a very cool visit. A wide spiral ramp follows the dome’s shape, and being that it was late-evening, the view was quite special.