Tag Archives: Brandenburg

Camping and canoeing on the River Havel: Fürstenberg to Burgwall

It’s been a rainy, relatively cool summer in Berlin, but luckily last weekend some sunny weather arrived, so we headed off to Brandenburg for some canoeing and camping adventures involving goats, swing dancing and raclette. For those who may not know, Brandenburg is the large state surrounding Berlin (Berlin is a separate state, or Bundesland in German), and it’s full of beautiful countryside, forests, lakes, rivers and waterways. North of Brandenburg is the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, which is also a boat-lovers paradise, has beautiful nature, and borders the Baltic sea (Ostsee). We decided to start our trip in Fürstenberg, located at the southern edge of the Mecklenburg Lake District, about 75km from Berlin. Continue reading

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Brandenburg Bike rides: Fürstenberg/Havel to Templin

The state of Brandenburg around Berlin is a paradise for biking, and we’ve spent many a happy day riding through forests and countrysides, past lakes, villages and orchards. From Berlin you can catch a train to any of numerous towns that can act as a starting point and then with the help of google maps and signposts, find your way to another town from where you can take the train back to Berlin. This weekend we headed off to Fürstenberg with a friend who felt like going for a bike ride on her birthday. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #20 – Cambridge in spring

As Mani from A New Life Wandering says: Share your happiness! I find that the small things that make us happy every day are easily forgotten. This blog event is simply about remembering and sharing those small things that made you happy during the week.

Technically this is two week’s worth of small pleasures as the last two weeks have been quite busy and sort of rolled into one! We took a weekend trip to Cambridge, then I had to prepare a work presentation and poster, and we had our work retreat. Here were some of the highlights of the last two weeks. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #17 – Berlin and Brandenburg

Welcome to this week’s Weekly Small Pleasures, Mani’s blog event where you take note of the little things during the week that bring you happiness. After spending the whole week working inside a biosafety level 3 facility, the weekend was a good chance to get some sun and some time outdoors. We had great weather in Berlin this weekend, and spent Saturday walking around the city of Berlin and Sunday cycling in the surrounding countryside of Brandenburg.

Our first stop on Saturday morning was the Markthalle Neun in Kreuzberg, an indoor market where you can enjoy different foods such as English pies, Italian cheeses, German cakes, Spanish tapas as well as craft beers, coffee and ice-cream. a good coffee is always a pleasure. After that we took a long walk around Berlin. My favourite part was the pretty and charming area around the Nikolaiviertel. After a brief stop at home we headed off again to check out the blossoms at Bornholmer Strasse and continued walking by the railway tracks right up until Pankow.

On Sunday we went for a bike ride on the Panoramaweg, as it is Baumblütenfest time. We enjoyed cycling in the countryside through villages, orchards and countryside and trying the fruit wines along the way.

Other pleasures of the week were the fact that it’s getting light later now, the temperatures shot up, ending the cold spell of the week before, and we are having blue skies more regularly.

Check out A new life wandering blog to see what other people enjoyed this week.

Wishing everyone a good week ahead!

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #13 – Christmas market season

Last Sunday was the first Advent, and so the Christmas season has started. So many Christmas markets (Weihnachtsmarkten) to visit, and not enough weekends! This time of year always flies by very quickly as there is always a lot to finish off at work before the holidays, including planning for the new year so that things run smoothly upon returning to work, as well as  presents to find, cookies to bake, Christmas decorations to put up and Christmas markets to visit. There are a large variety of Christmas markets in Berlin, ranging from traditional ones, touristy ones, design, modern or “hipster” ones, to the country specialty markets (Nordic Christmas market, Dutch Christmas market) and the unusual ones (Japanese Christmas market). Some of them are open the whole season, whereas others are only open for one weekend. Here is a map of the markets in Berlin for 2015, here is a description of a few of the traditional ones we visit every year (not all inclusive!),  and here is a list of more unusual ones to visit.

So here are some of the good moments from this Christmassy week. Continue reading

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Autumn biking in Naturpark Barnim

 

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We enjoyed a long, warm and golden autumn this year, but finally the rain came, followed by strong winds, and now the trees are bare again. It made me sad to see them at first, knowing that it would be many months before we would see them coming alive again. Once the leaves had fallen, the temperatures dropped rapidly, and we have even had some light snow already. Before we get too far into deep, dark winter, I wanted to share some photos of our glorious autumn season. To start with, here are some photos from a bike ride we did in Naturpark Barnim, a big nature area in Brandenburg near Berlin. We started at Karow and followed lovely cycle paths all the way to Eberswalde. Brandenburg is really the perfect place for cycling. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #9 – Cake and kayaking

This week’s small pleasures included a meal at a  Moroccan restaurant, J’s birthday, and a lovely hot weekend in which we could do some outdoor sports.

1) Although the best Moroccan meal I’ve ever had is still the one in Lieges, Belgium, i always enjoy a tasty Moroccan tagine, the mint tea served in pretty glasses with a silver teapot, and the lush decor in maroons and burgundy. At this restaurant they also came around with a jug of rosewater to wash our hands before the meal, which smelt beautiful.

2) It was J’s birthday on Thursday so I made him this Sachertorte cake with a Mary Berry recipe. I always find her recipes really reliable, and this one turned out very nicely.

3) On Saturday we went for a cycle on part of the Oder-Neisse cycle tour, which runs along the Oder river on the border of Germany and Poland. It’s very scenic and we saw lots of animals and open fields of countryside – will write more about it some time when I have time!

4) On Sunday we went to Müggelsee for some kayaking, which was perfect on a hot day. More about that here.

Have a good week!

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #2 – weekend in Czech

Last week was a pretty ordinary working week, with the highlight of the week definitely being the weekend trip to Czech to visit J’s family. Summer is slowly arriving, and the return of this season, including some lovely warm weather, was the greatest source of pleasure this week. Here are some of the moments that stood out this week: Continue reading

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Weekend of blossom festivals

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This weekend we visited the Baumblütenfest in Werder an der Havel (www.obstbauverein-werder.de/baumbluetenfest.htm) and the Kirschblütenfest-Hanami in Teltow /Berlin-Lichterfelde (http://www.teltow.de/veranstaltung/kirschbluetenfest.html). Hanami (“flower viewing”) is “the Japanese custom of enjoying the transient beauty of flowers” (as Wikipedia poetically puts it), often the blossoms of the cherry tree (sakura), or sometimes the plum tree “ume”. Continue reading

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