When arriving in a new city, the first thing I usually try to do is learn the streets and the transit system. While in Berlin, I'm staying in "Mitte", the middle of the city, and the hotel is only two blocks down the Stresemann Strasse from the famous Potsdamer Platz. It's a transit hub for the S-Bahn and U-Bahn and steps to the Brandenburg Gate and the Unter den Linden.
One of several 3-D advertising billboards around the square.
Looking to the east. Alexanderplatz and the iconic Fernsehturm (television tower) is in the background. This is where I'm headed.
The post-modernist train station.This used to be the no-man's land between East and West. In the background, the high-rise developments straddle the route of the former Berlin Wall.
Sort of like New York City's Time Square. Oh and I'm going the wrong way, I'm looking for the U2. More adventures underground and at Alexanderplatz AFTER THE JUMP ...
The ticket booth is on the platform. As in Vienna, you buy, validate and are more or less on the honor system. But some stations require a validated ticket for exit.
The 24 hour ticket. Cost is €6.5 or $8.40ish.
Throughout the U- and S-Bahn there are dramatic adverts for the Berlin Opera.
Achtung baby! This is Berlin's famous U2. I head east to Alexanderplatz.
The ride was only about seven minutes.
The Alexanderplatz is a huge plaza, major transit hub and the hub of the former East Berlin. The neighboring boulevard once featured military parades in the former DDR.
The landscape is dominated by the iconic Fernsehturm and the atmosphere is still somewhat reminiscent of the communist-era.
There was Michael Jackson music blasting from speakers. Oh and the tram runs alongside pedestrian traffic.