June 28, 2017

Day 8: Hannover–Berlin

Yesterday I got to Hannover, Germany. I’m here on the way to Berlin, visiting a more realistic, non-capital-city and yet thoroughly pleasant city. Last night I wandered through much of the Old Town and down to the large Maschsee lake. Today I’m visiting The Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen and hopping back on a Deutsche Bahn ICE train to Berlin.

The Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen

The gardens are divided into two areas, with half composed of short greenery and the other half of quite tall trees. The best way to show this is a satellite view, so please forgive the size of the Google Map below.

To make my 12:31pm train, I got there shortly after it opened at 9am. I seemed to be the second or third visitor of the day, which was great for getting photos without people in them. Access was remarkably easy: Hannover’s main train station and main U-Bahn station are linked by a subterranean shopping mall, and from there it’s an 8 minute journey running every 7 minutes. If you visit, note that the fountains turn on from about 10am.

Statues guarding the front garden remind me of Weeping Angels from Doctor Who…

Further back there are an assortment of smaller gardens, some with roses and others with more artistic bushes.

The rear garden is largely composed of trees. It has an incredibly tall waterfall, which Wikipedia claims can reach 80m high in calm weather.

It started to rain at this point, so I tried hiding under a tree while putting on my anorak. This tree turned out be in the spray from the fountain, which was far worse than the rain.

The east and west in particular have beautiful geometry from long rows of trees.

The garden is encircled by a small canal. This ornate bridge presumably dates from the original construction.

The original palace was destroyed in WWII. In the early 2000s it was rebuilt (below), and now houses a Museum that I didn’t get to visit - a shame, as I’d have loved to hear more of the history.


I don’t have too much to report for the journey East to Berlin. It rained a lot, the architecture changed but not in a way I could pinpoint until Berlin, and I’m pretty tired.

A little later the rain had become quite intense, the entire window a waterfall.

Things cleared up just in time to see a train carrying BMWs. I suppose it’s an efficient way to get them to port.

Berlin Hauptbahnhof is somewhat more complicated (5 storeys all open plan) than I’d anticipated, and finding where tourist information was to buy a Berlin Welcome Card (3 days of public transport and free/discounted attractions) took some doing.

Something I meant to do throughout this trip was to document the design of everyday buildings and objects. It’s too late to make a good study of that now, but here is the design of Deutsche Bahn departure signs and a U-Bahn station in eastern Berlin.

I have two full days to enjoy Berlin, and I’m rather fatigued. Thus I got dinner at a burger place outside the hotel (hallo! ich möchte einen Cheeseburger und Süßkartoffelpommes, bitte), napped for awhile and then read up on what to do in Berlin. Bye for now!