Day 14 in Deutschland, The Baltic and Berlin

Day 14 in Deutschland, The Baltic and Berlin

And done! After a 2-week whirlwind of travel, I am now resting my behind on the couch, adjusting my clock back to the Eastern timezone. Here are the highlights of my last day in Germany. Google Maps

I really wanted to see the Baltic Sea before heading back over the Atlantic. But time was an issue. Instead of heading to Rügen island, accessible through the Stralsund (a 6 hour roundtrip train ride from Hamburg), I headed to Lübeck, a short 1 hour train ride, one way. DSC_0036

I hit the Hanburg train station at 06:00, when drunken boisterous dopes still wandered about, to ensure I wouldn’t have to share Travemünde Strand with too many folks. My plan worked. It was me and the sea. Staring out towards Scandinavia, I had requisite profound thoughts/questions and then moved on, joining the early bird cyclists on the boardwalk.

The German coast along the Baltic and North Seas have a special claim to fame: the strandkorb, a straw beach seat that is characteristically German–the epitome of form meets function. With reclining high-back cushions and foot rests, as well as storage and an easy lock-up gate, these awesome chairs were designed in the 1800’s to block the coastal winds.DSC_0002

The lonely strandkorbs lined the beachDSC_0046

This was how far I stepped into the sea. It was a very chilly morning.

After returning to Hamburg, I made a b-line to Veganz, an all-vegan grocery chain with stores across Germany– including this one in Altona, a hip, multi-culti borough of Hamburg city. That’s right, a store where I can buy anything without scrutinizing the ingredients! Clearly this was a must-stop… but there was another all-vegan supermarket I could have visited: Bevegend.PicMonkey Collage3.jpg

Before perusing the aisles, I had breakfast at the in-store Fairy Food. I needed to try their vegan croissant and have my first-ever cappuccino. PicMonkey Collage1.jpg

There were some familiar imports in the store, including Upton’s Naturals, Eat Pastry, Tofurky, and Gardein.DSC_0089

Once again the vegan cheese spread in Germany impresses me. I wished I could have bought some to bring home but I knew it wouldn’t last. DSC_0090

I regret not buying a bag of these white chocolate buttons.

So much fun to check out these German vegan items. DSC_0092DSC_0095

They even had a cosmetic counter.DSC_0094

Their ice cream cooler was not “open” during my visit unfortunately.DSC_0096

I bought a few item, including this “nougat ring.” After trying that Charleston Chew-like candy bar, I was excited about vegan nougat. This confection from Vegan Bakery was a nice treat to devour on the train ride to Berlin. The nougat was more like a whipped buttercream piped on top of a flaky cookie, then chocolate-coated. PicMonkey Collage2.jpg

DSC_0106It was a packed ride to Berlin from Hamburg… and I was ready to get a good night’s sleep in my private room. I reserved a seat on the train for the first time and, in turn, avoiding having the stand the entire way. I checked into yet another spotless hostel that was easily accessible from the huge central station. I took a quick walk and had a hearty dinner before making it back for my early bead time. And thankfully, the first bit of rain I saw on my trip limited the noise of boisterous travelers milling about the courtyard.

I chose my dinner spot based solely on location. I wanted somewhere within walking distance. I thought the reviews of Seerose painted a scrumptious picture. It was just what I needed–veg-heavy, fresh and flavorful.
Here was my dish, front-view. The beautiful colors and different textures and tastes were divine. I heart fresh herbs.DSC_0104

And the other side of the plate. Look at those big chunks of squash.DSC_0105

And here it is… a Berlin Wall. Not thee Berlin Wall. But a wall in Berlin. I had nothing left to explore sites in the big Berlin. Another time, Germany. It was time to head home. DSC_0107