2 – Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. 3 – Berlin Wall – East Side Gallery. 4 – Timeline of the building of the Berlin Wall. 7 – Brandeberg Gate. 8 – An East German Soilder defecting to the West. 12 – August 13th 2015, 59 years since the building of The Wall. 14 – Remanents of The Wall. 15 – Memorial to the famous “book burning” of 1933 by the Nazi’s.
Berlin was my home for 5 months but sadly, a few weeks ago, I had to say good bye to it as we have now moved to London! I have loved getting to know this city. It has an incredible history and the German people are very open about this. Museums and monuments about World War II, and the more recent history of East Germany, are everywhere. My favourite moments in Berlin were exploring this city on a bicycle and soaking in the culture. Here is a list of must-do’s for Berlin:
1. Visit Museums
There are so many to choose from in Berlin, even if you don’t enjoy museums in general, there will be something for you! My favourite museums were; the GDR museum (East Germany), the Topography of Terror (World War II) and the museum at The Memorial for the Murdered Jews of Europe.
2. Have a picnic
There are many beautiful parks in Berlin. Tiergarten is located in the middle of the city. Here you can rent a boat and paddle around the inner park lakes or have a beer at the biergarten.
Another park you must visit is Tempelhof. This park was once the American Airport in Berlin. When it shut down in 2008, the citizens of Berlin were asked what should be done to the airport, and they decided that the airport would become a park. You can now cycle and run around the old runways or plant some herbs in the community veggie patch!
3. Visit the markets
There are open air markets located all across Berlin on the weekends. The best of these by far is the market held on Sundays at Mauer Park. If you are looking for a fun Sunday activity then this is it! You will not leave this market empty handed, it’s huge! The market is open from 11am-6pm. Have some lunch while you shop at one of the many food trucks. During the summer, karaoke is also held in the outdoor amphitheatre starting at 3pm… it’s not to be missed! This amphitheatre holds 500-600 people and is always full so get there early to nab a seat. There is also plenty of live music being showcased in the park throughout the day.
4. Check out the neighbourhoods
Each Berlin suburb has a different feel to it. If you’d like to see the “grungy” parts of Berlin, head to Kreuzberg or Fredrichshain. Neue Heimat in Fredrichshain is definitely a place to visit to soak in the true Berlin “vibe”. It’s a bunch of bars, food trucks and rooms in an old warehouse. Friday nights are a good time to visit, check out the jazz jam starting at 10pm!
Prenzlauerberg is full of beautiful streets, buildings and boutique shops. There is also great coffee to be had in this area! Head to No Fire No Glory for a coffee and slice of cake. Hands down, the best coffee I’ve ever had.
Mitte is in the centre of the city and where you’ll find places such as Brandeberg Gate, Tiergarten, Alexanderplatz (TV Tower), Berliner Dom (Cathedral) and Museum Island which is literally an island in the middle of Spree River that is covered in museums. The best way to explore is to hire a bike! There is also some lovely quiet areas of Mitte you can explore, head to Shiso Burger for lunch for the best burgers in town and explore the surrounding streets! At the end of the day, head to the outdoor bars along the Spree river, just outside Muesum Island, for a cider!
I’m missing Berlin already.