Visitors Can Sleep With Reindeer at Berlin Museum

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An art exhibit in Berlin allows visitors to not only observe reindeer but spend the night in a revolving bed in the middle of a herd -- for about $1,363 per night. It's turned into a huge Christmas hit, albeit unintentionally.

Artist Carsten Höller actually created the installation -- which also features two dozen live canaries, eight mice and four flies -- to let people experience spiritual Hinduism.

The "Soma" exhibit is named for a legendary hallucinogenic drink made of mushrooms and believed to have been used 5,000 years ago in Hindu religious ceremonies.

But seeing reindeer has caused many visitors to think about Christmas instead. As a consequence, "Soma" has turned into the most popular exhibit in the Hamburger Bahhoff museum's history, The Associated Press reports.

Red and white mushroom sculptures are scattered throughout the exhibit, which some feel adds to a holiday ambience.

The reindeers eat wild mushrooms, and visitors can observe the animals' behavior.

For those wanting more, perched above the herd is a circular platform with an elevated bed that is already rented out every night until the exhibit ends in February -- except Christmas Eve. The museum has not yet decided if visitors will be allowed to stay over on the 24th, and if so, what the price tag should be.

"The bed was comfortable, but we were too excited to sleep," overnight visitor Maru Winnacker tells AP. The reindeer were playing and fighting; it was quite loud. We sat on the bed and watched it all."

Railings keep visitors from contact with the reindeer at all times -- including those staying overnight.

The animals are to be returned to their owner in Sweden when the exhibit closes.

Photo, Gero Breloer, AP
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