Yesterday, we headed deep into the heart of Brandenburg. No, not really. Not at all, actually. We just went to Spandau and Elstal, but it was far enough away from our apartment that I almost felt a little homesick by the end of the day. I mean, who wouldn’t be homesick for the rude glare of the Berliners? (In all fairness, the sunny weather is making them a bit more congenial)
Spandau was incorporated into Berlin in the 1920s. It still feels like a small town and is actually older than Berlin proper by about 60 or so years. I hear the Spandauers are very proud of this. We didn’t spend enough time there to really find out. The major sight there is the Zitadelle (Citadel), a medieval fortress that protected the town from invaders. It did not, however, protect Spandau from Shoshana.
Afterwards we walked towards the Altstadt, but not being in the mood for the usual German sights (Altmarkt, Kirche, Rathaus) we went straight to the train station and hopped on an RE train to Elstal or, as it was conveniently labeled at its very humble train station, Designer Shopping Outlet
. I am terrible at taking detail/every day life sort of pictures, so you’ll just have to believe me when I say that Elstal consists of one track and a bus to the mall.
The outlet mall is actually pretty for a mall. The buildings are all finished with Baroque German touches.
You’ll just have to take my word for it.
It was here that we had the most exciting and maybe even the most German part of the day. We went to the Adidas factory store. Yes, we went to the Adidas factory store on a Saturday in Germany and we made it out alive. It was possibly the craziest shopping experience I’ve ever had in Germany, a place where even during Christmas-time the stores weren’t really that busy, at least not to my American standards.
Our patience was rewarded with a blurry U-Bahn photo and these adorable shoes…
I picked up two new pairs, as well, and all together our three pairs cost less then one pair at the retail store. Hurrah! Totally worth leaving Berlin even if there is very little in the way of cultural attractions (or anything else for that matter).
Getting to the outlet center is super easy. Just take the RE4 from Hauptbahnhof to Elstal or, if you want to add a little substance to your day, take the U7 to Spandau and spend some time walking around.