So, at the end of last year I decided it was time for a ladies' weekend. My best mate was wrapping up the shoot of a TV show that ended in Berlin. So, naturally, I’m never one to turn down a wrap party!
We managed to find a great little place to stay in, an apartment hotel just a few streets down from Check Point Charlie. It worked out at about £180 for three nights. There are loads of great things to do in Berlin. The main events during this trip I have to say, as you may have guessed, involved booze and food! You must be getting to know me better by now!
As the trip was a short one, we tried to see the main touristy sights and left the off-the-beaten-track activities for next time. A good place to go is an art squat called Tacheles (Art House Tacheles) in the Mitte district. There are various different bars and places to eat close by, the curry house over the road is a bargain, they do a mean Mojito and it’s covered in the happy hour!
One thing I would defiantly advise is a walking tour by Alternative Berlin. The tour covers many areas and the guide gives information on street art and graffiti, urban art projects, squat houses & communes, Berlin’s historical movements, and architectural feats of East and West Berlin.
Another great way to see the city is in the Hi Flyer Balloon that’s based in the heart of Berlin. The view from the top is great and it ascends to a height of 450 feet, so not for folks who are bothered by heights.
For anyone going to Berlin, the Berlin Wall is the first thing that will probably spring to mind. I would recommend it, but in terms of art, I think there’s much more interesting works to see. But it’s good to see for the sheer size of it and for its historical importance.
Off one of the main roads in Berlin is The Neue Wache, the memorial for the victims of war. This isn’t a major attraction but if you are passing by, better go and see it. I felt that the way the sculpture was placed combined with the room dynamics and design gave a strong impact.
As the Haus am Checkpoint Charlie (Check Point Charlie Museum) was close to our hotel, we decided we’d go and get an audio guide. I’ve never really had a great interest in wars or their history but the Checkpoint Museum gave me a good understanding of the makeup of the city and what its citizens have had to contend with. I would recommend a visit at the start of your trip.
Berlin has many shops and great markets to nosey around while stopping off at a few watering holes along the way.
As both of us hadn’t been to Berlin before, and we were on a tight schedule, we decided to get on a bus tour. It worked well because we jumped off along the way and there were lots of interesting characters and architectural interests to take pictures of.
Berlin has become one of my favorite places to visit and I know I’ll be going back. It has everything: galleries, bars, shops, diverse cultures, and a history that its residents are reacting to in a bright and colorful way. So what are your experiences of Berlin? Where shall I go on my next visit? I’m looking to go off the beaten track next time so your tips and advice are welcome!