European Cruise on the Baltic Sea – (Part 1) Things to see in Berlin
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Last year around August our family had the trip of a lifetime! It was a wonderful experience. This is our first time visiting anywhere in…wait it… .EUROPE!!! I planned this trip as a Christmas present for the whole Family. My husband and I decided that instead of buying everyone a bunch of little Christmas presents (which we knew would one day be thrown in the back of our closets), we should plan for a big family vacation every year. What better way to make lasting memories?!? I know I want us to go to Europe but I don’t know where. It is a competition between France, Italy and Spain or Scandinavian countries like Denmark and Germany. When I was on a scouting mission one night to find my family’s favorite places, I discovered that most wanted to go to Sweden, Finland, and Denmark. I decided that a holiday cruise would be the most economical way for the whole family to see Europe like that, Europe Cruises on the Baltic Sea!
I chose to sail with Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) because of their Free Style Dining. I have never traveled with any other cruise line before, however I have heard some people say that on other cruise lines, there are designated times and seats (sometimes with different people). you don’t know) isn’t always a bad thing, but when I’m on vacation, I really don’t want to feel the need to entertain others or be told what time I need to eat. Another thing about Free Style Dining is that there is no dress code (unless you choose to dine in a specialty restaurant). I also like NCL because their train is quite new compared to other cruise lines. They also have these amazing designs on their sidewalls 🙂 For this particular cruise we took the Norwegian Getaway.
We sailed out of Coppenhagen, Denmark and embarked on a 9 Day Cruise to explore 6 different countries! Countries include Denmark, Germany, Finland, Sweden, Estonia and Russia. My favorite country out of the six we visited was Germany. We docked at the port of Warnemunde, Germany. For this trip (and most of all of our trips), I purchased our excursions through Viator Travel instead of going through NCL. I find that through Viator, excursions are more within my budget. Also, I find that the cruises are not as crowded as when you go through a company other than the cruise line. Viator also has great customer service.
For Germany, I booked an excursion to Berlin. This tour requires a LOT of walking. There are other tours where walking is limited, however, prepare for walking sensibly and make sure to wear comfortable shoes. We boarded the bus from the pier that took us about 3 hours to Berlin where we met our Guide. Our tour guide was awesome! He is very knowledgeable and very entertaining. He made our trip to Berlin wonderful and memorable. Berlin is rich in history! There is so much to see in Berlin and so much to learn. We saw the remains of the Berlin Wall, the Tiergarten (Berlin’s central park), the Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, the Holocaust Memorial, the Fuhrerbunker (Hitler’s bunker where he and Eva Braun lived. committed suicide shortly after they got married, now nothing more than a Parking Lot), the Adlon Hotel (where Michael Jackson hung his baby on his hotel balcony), and MUCH MORE!! I wish we could spend more time in Germany. Sadly we only had one day there. One of the downsides of travel is that you can only do a short amount of time in each location. However, the advantage of this is that you can visit multiple places and decide which one you want to come back to and stay longer next time. Germany is definitely a place I plan to visit again.