Sunday, 26th August 2018 – Munich
On Sunday we landed at the airport of Munich. Lea and Lisa, our supervisors for the upcoming week, picked us up at the airport and we went to the youth hostel by bus. After a short introduction we went straight to the city centre and we ate a tasty schnitzel at “Schnitzelwirt”. Afterwards, we had a look at the beautiful and illuminated town hall and took a lot of pictures. After a long day and an exhausting journey we went back to the hostel but not without stopping at the ice cream store in the neighbourhood. We were very happy to be in Germany now and were excited for the upcoming week.
Monday, 27th August 2018 – Munich
Our first complete day in Germany started with a delicious breakfast from the buffet in the youth hostel. Energized for the day we took the metro to start our excursions. We had the chance to choose between two activities: the Allianz Arena, the stadium of the Football Club Bayern Munich, for the football fans or the memorial of the concentration camp in Dachau. We were all happy with our choice and exchanged experiences at the reunion with the others in the afternoon.
Before our tour through the city centre of Munich started, we had some free time to go shopping, to eat something or simply to relax. During our tour, Lea showed us many nice sights. The tour started at the Ludwig-Maximilian-University, then we entered the Hofgarten and went to the Odeonsplatz. Around this square, many impressing buildings are located: the Theatiner Church, the Feldherrnhalle and the national theatre. After this, we strolled along the Maximilianstraße where many expensive shops of well-known luxury brands string together. Our tour ended at the famous Hofbräuhaus and the Viktualienmarkt where you can buy lots of fruits and vegetables. At the end Lea brought us to Marienplatz and again we had some free time to have a well-deserved dinner. On our way back home we stopped once more at the ice cream store and the seller was very happy to see us again.
Tuesday, 28th August 2018 – off to Dresden
After this amazing time in Munich, our journey continued. Our next stop was the city of Dresden, so we took the bus from Bavaria to Saxony. After a long ride we arrived at the coach station and could walk to the youth hostel because it was not far away. After we moved into our rooms we went to the city centre. Compared to Munich, Dresden is a smaller city and everything is accessible within walking distance so we were not dependent on public transport. After a short city tour through the illuminated old town passing the Frauenkirche up to the bank of River Elbe, we decided to eat all together. We chose the Italian restaurant “L’Osteria”. They offered really big pizzas and we ate even all of it! Happy and satisfied we headed back home.
Wednesday, 29th August 2018 – Dresden
A hiking trip in the nature was planned for the second day we spent in Saxony. For this we took the train for half an hour to the Elbsandsteingebirge which is located in the Saxon Switzerland, a national park. The weather was perfect for this event, the sky was blue and the sun shined the whole day. After our arrival at the train station of Rathen we took a nice ferry to cross the River Elbe and we reached the small village Niederrathen. We prepared for the hike in the mountains and our tour began. There were several viewing platforms on the way where you had a stunning view on the River Elbe. The Bastion Bridge and the viewpoint where we had a picnic were the highlights of the excursion. After we recharged our batteries we headed downwards towards the ferry. This time we took another way which leads through a canyon that is called “Schwedenlöcher”.
Back in Dresden we had a short break to relax and it was time for our second part of the city tour. We combined the tour with a little orientation game. For each station two volunteers of our class got a city map and guided us to the next sight. All of them got a yummy price if they made it to the right destination. We visited the Zwinger, a stunning baroque building and one of the most popular monuments in Dresden. After that, the next team led us to the Semperoper, the stage of the Saxon State Opera Dresden. We completed our tour with the residential palace, home of electoral prince August der Starke. For dinner we had delicious burgers with chips at the restaurant Burgerlich and with a full stomach we headed to the youth hostel.
Thursday, 30th August 2018 – off to Berlin
Finally we went to Berlin! We were all really excited to see the German capital and also to meet the other exchange students we were supposed to meet at the hostel. We joined 30 Taiwanese, two Mexicans and seven other Colombians who arrived in the evening. After, we had lunch at the hostel we went to Alexanderplatz with our new guide Margit. There, we looked at the huge television tower and the world time clock where we also found Bogotá! Then we went to Brandenburger Tor and took lots of nice photos. Unfortunately it started raining and we had to search for a dry place to eat something. In a big shopping centre there was an immense choice of international food available and everyone found the perfect meal.
In the evening we gathered with all the other exchange students and the aubiko-board member Rike welcomed us warmly. Plus, we celebrated Tarek’s sixteenths birthday and sang “Happy Birthday” in several languages. Shortly after this we played a funny game which is called “fruit salad”, basically you have to swap seats and snatch a free one. Then we had to say Goodbye to our teacher Martin because the next day he went back to Colombia. We wrote him a farewell letter and hoped that he will have a nice journey. Our friend Sofia accompanied him as well, so we also said goodbye to her.
Friday, 31th August 2018 – Berlin
Friday was the last day we could spend all together. After breakfast we were separated into two groups. The students who participated at the school exchange with aubiko took a preparation class with Lea and Christian. There, they could clarify all the questions and Lea explained more important facts about German culture and language. The other group went again to the city centre with Margit and Esmira. As we had a lot of time during the others had their class, we visited many interesting sights in Berlin. We started at the Gedächtniskirche which is located at the famous Kurfürstendamm and we went also to Kaufhaus des Westens that is more well-known as KaDeWe, we had a look at all the expensive shops. Afterwards we had a little walk in the Tiergarten and headed to the Reichstagsgebäude, the building of the German Bundestag. We spent the lunch break at Friedrichstraße and went shopping at Alexanderplatz. Fully packed with all the bags we continued to walk towards Schlesisches Tor which was our meeting point with our classmates and Lisa. Unfortunately we did not meet our friend Stephanie because her host mother already had to pick her up at the youth hostel and the adventure school exchange started earlier for her than for us. Finally we went to East-Side-Gallery, a part of the Berlin Wall which is painted with many interesting artworks and slogans these days. The wall was the highlight of our city tour in the German capital and we liked it very much.
But the day was not over yet! At our arrival at the youth hostel, the Taiwanese already started to prepare the barbecue and it smelled so good! We helped them to prepare dinner and so everyone who wanted to could be the BBQ expert. We ate outside all together and just when we were done, the host father of Estefania arrived to pick her up. To round off the day, all students from Taiwan, Colombia and Mexico organised a culture café for the evening. We prepared several stations where everybody had to complete funny exercises and challenges. For example some Colombian girls offered Salsa dancing lessons and the Taiwanese learned the basic steps. The other way round we learned Chinese numbers and tried to write down some characters. We had so much fun and the cultural exchange with the Taiwanese people was really interesting to us. After the game we had time to dance and to party. We tried to motivate the Taiwanese to participate and to use their new learned dancing steps. At some point the song “Time to Say Goodbye” was played and accordingly it was time to say bye to our classmates and to the aubiko-Team.
Saturday, 1st September 2018 – Berlin
The big day arrived! It was time to go to the central train or bus station and go to the host families. Especially on this day we were very nervous and excited. The trip through Germany was over and the next adventure was coming: the three-month exchange in our German host family!