Potsdam Biosphaere- with Andrew-y, Andrew and Mari-Andrew

The Biosphaere is rated number 5 by Tripadvisor on the 'list of things to do in Potsdam', beaten out only by the likes of Park Sanssouci and Cecilienhof (where the Big Wigs met after WWII).

Granted, there are only 32 things in the entire list, half of them are inside the park itself (the park is trailed by the Sanssouci palace, the Chinese Tea House, the Orangerie... etc.), and number two is Potsdam itself (cue reviews titled 'OK, but not worth spending a day').

But it seemed like a nice place to hang out on a not-so-sunny afternoon, and a good location for Andrew and I to spend hours adjusting camera settings and peering at bugs, without the others getting too far in front of us.

For those of you who don't like spider, you might want to skip the first few exhibition cases...

To get in, you first have to wait in a green corridor....

... and then get ushered into a creepy old storybook study, where they show a short film that, unless my german understanding is very wrong, is strangely vague-then-momentarily-specific (The ocean has many fish, the ocean has many different habitats. This wale shark, whose name is Paul, has two sisters and likes to go to the movies every second Thursday, eats 100 kg of shrimp a day, has a filter mechanism, is large, and nice and prefers the colour lilac. The ocean is wet).

But then, we were released into the jungle.

I was disappointed at first that there wasn't an actual sphaere/dome thing, but was quickly distracted by all the shiny pretties around.

Oh no! What have they done with Australia?

You follow a path through the trees, and are greeted by various pop ups, educational placards, exhibits of animals, and things to see, touch and- yes- smell.

 Which means there's plenty for everyone to do. Mari-Anne chose to get educated/practice her Deutsch...

I spent 20 minutes stalking a shiny bird...

'Hey lady, enough with the photos already.'

While Andy became excited by mushrooms.

You'd never guess why.

Andrew we lost for a bit- but presumably he was somewhere nearby, putting his new camera to good use.

Found him!


Schreechy birds!

For some reason, the people involved felt that the addition of plastic bats would increase the thrall of their establishment...

There was a selection of bugs, most of which, being fascinating stick insects, involved a game of hide-and-seek to first spot them...

...but they also some creepy demon bugs if that's more your style:

Plus little geckos...

And some mud skippers, rather awesomely called SCHLAMMSPRINGER in Deutsch, which marked the segue from the land into the 'aquasphaere'.

After a bit of dressing up and a frolick in an 'underwater cave' (it echoed!), we segued back out and onto the land with some very pretty froggies.

This little ghost frog was my favourite thing in the whole sphere...although strangely reminiscent of an Anne Geddes don't you think?

We stopped by the cafe, and met up with a coi food-orgy, who sadly couldn't tell the difference between food being scattered and rain from the hourly thunderstorms in the dome falling on their pond.

Next stop, the Butterfly House. Rather small, but filled with movement and exciting specimens.

Look at those amazed faces!



 ...and Effect: the next generation


On the way to the exit, Andrew spotted this little fellow, who seemed to recognise us and kin.

The spaere ends in a (pretend) air balloon ride, which had unfortunately 'just left'. We were too lazy to wait for the next one, so exited through the gift shop.

 Overall, it was a pretty nice experience, especially perfect if you have kids I'd imagine... and I can certainly see the value of returning during the Long Winter Siege, if only to feel for a few hours that there's still life on this planed!

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