Berlin: History, Hipsters & Hops

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Berlin was unlike anywhere else we’ve visited in Europe. Yeah, I know, every city is unique, but if I had to compare Berlin to another destination I would go with Brooklyn rather than anywhere on this continent. Part of that is probably because so much of the city was built relatively recently, after getting bombed heavily during World War II. And part of it is probably the prominent hipster vibe that makes Portland, Oregon, seem mainstream. In any case, Germany’s capital and its history is one of a kind, and we had a wonderful time soaking it in.

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Pompeii: In the Shadow of Vesuvius

We left Naples early Thursday morning and boarded a crowded, graffiti-covered train that we thought would drop us off outside the ruins of Pompeii — but luckily we figured out that was not the case just as the doors started to close and jumped back onto the platform. Twenty minutes later, we were on the correct crowded, graffiti-covered train, and about 40 minutes after that we were standing in the ticket line outside Pompeii’s entrance. The site has free luggage storage so the plan was to spend the day exploring the ruins and then reclaim our bags and take the train to the port of Sorrento with enough time to catch the last ferry to Capri. We had a couple of further hiccups — like waiting for the ferry at the wrong dock — but we made it to Capri in the end. And Pompeii itself? Absolutely worth the logistical headache.

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