To get to Potsdam from Spandau is a bit of a faff, and took an hour on the train. However it is well worth it.
2 min from the train station and we are in to it!
Potsdam was in the DDR so it retains some of that East German . . . flair.
Note the helmetTypical streetAt the market - an information display about edible fungi
They have a Dutch district, but that’s just a section of Dutch-style buildings. I didn’t see any Dutch culture.
From here I wandered around the old town (2 bakeries per person) and had a traditional Berlin lunch.
One of the town gatesCurrywurst!
then went to the main schloss at Sans Soucci – another Frederick the Great building.
Take THAT!View from the palace
There’s a combined entry ticket for €19 that lets you in to all the castles for one day. It’s worth it if you visit more than 3 – you can easily do it at Sanscoucci Park alone. Arrive early to avoid crowds and make the most of the day.
The tour of Sansoucci Palace is done with an audio guide, and groups are let in every 5 min. I started by looking at the kitchens.
There was also a sizeable cellar. From here I ascended to the main palace.
The entrancewayNeeds more RococcoFancy ceiling- to distract people from dirty floor?The end room had very fruity decoration
It only takes about 20min to do the tour, but the audio commentary probably lasts twice that. I went down to the New Pavillion. It’s similar but much smaller, and with much less furniture.
Russian end-of-war celebrations were held hereGlitzy
I went back out to the grounds. There’s a windmill and some formal gardens, and a lot of woods.
It’s a surprisingly long walk to the New Palace. On the way there’s a botannical garden if you like that sort of thing.
The New Palace
Seashell decoration in the New Palace lobby
Note that when you have a multi-entry ticket you still have to go to the ticket counters of the indivdual palaces to be issued with a ticket for them. This is extremely annoying.
Frederick III's death spotWilhelm II lived here and put in several modernisations - one is a lift for granny (hand-cranked).Indoor plumbing?!Which servant do I need?
The rest is all just fancy rooms.
For the ladiesWilhelm slept in the same bed as his wife! Scandalous!Ceiling painting in the ballroomRest of the ballroom
Then there was another long walk to the next thing.
'Chinese house'. If there's anything Chinese about it please tell me.
There was another palace, but I didn’t bother to look, due to time being short! I had a brief look at the Roman bath house, and the fake ruins. These have a life-guard tower cunningly hidden in them, so you can swim in the ruined pool in safety. I ran past the Marble Palace, which is actually made from brick.
Had to get to Ceceilienhof!
This is where the Potsdam Conference took place in 1945 so there were a lot of tour groups going through.
Not in this room thoughThis one! The big chairs were for Stalin, Truman and Atlee (Churchill had lost the election)The den.Outside. It's in the style of an English country house.The workers' cottages were actually very nice.
I took the trains back to Spandau.
Vending machine at the train station - these Germans are civilised!
When I arrived back my host took me on a tour of Grunewald.
What a way to finish!
Then I made the quintessential NZ dish – Alison Holst’s one-pan mince!