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Berlin Travel Tips

4.0 stars

Insider advice for your Berlin vacation


BerlinLovers
Holiday Apartments in Berlin Mitte Berlin49.de 5 stars
This is a furnished apartment for rental in Berlin Mitte, which is a nice option for short stay rather than stay in a Hotel. Why bother to stay in a hotel while this kind of apartment can give cheaper price but with twice of value. Not just a place to stay, but we can also get an experience to live like the local German. The apartment complex is situated at Mitte which is near to the famous Television Tower in Alexanderplatz. Here its easy to get a transportation, as Alexanderplatz is one of the perfect starting point to go to any district in Berlin. The apartment is in a great condition, the agency from Berlin49.de here are also very friendly and always make sure that my needs are fullfilled. Rooms are fully equipped so I didn't have to worry about anything. The apartment is spacious, it can fit up to five persons which is nice because I can invite my friends to stay. From my experience this place was much better than a hostels which usually have the same price. I'm not saying that hostels cannot be a cheap accommodation for holiday too, but as an example in my holiday apartment I get a washing machine so I can do my laundry by myself without any extra charges. You might want to try it just go to the website http://www.berlin49.de/index.html !


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jessi
Art for free.... 4 stars
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
This is an advice for everybody with a small budget. If you love museums but you are already broke from all the shopping and living up the city lifestyle you should consider visiting public museums on Thursdays between 6 and 10 pm. They are free of charge. BUT you should know that it is quite packed at that time. You totally enter a touristic world, which can be quite annoying...From my own experience I would highly suggest to invest the entrance fee and go on another day. You avoid the being in a supermarket atmosphere and enjoy great art pieces instead. Sometimes less is more...

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jessi
Low budget in Berlin 4 stars
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
An advice for everybody travelling on a low budget. Still you can enjoy Berlin and get around with little money. You can save on not using the touristic busses for a lot of money. Just take the bus line 100 and just pay the BVG fair. It will take you to the important touristic places: Castle Bellevue, the Reichstag and Alexanderplatz. Get out, walk around and if you have enough just take the bus line 100 again. Of course you do not have a tour guide in person but just buy a cheap guide in a bookstore and you will get information about all the sights.

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pudel74
Belle Ile 4 stars
In the north of Prenzlauer Berg there's no better place to enjoy a sunday morning with fresh patisserie an amazing cheese

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milandutch
Philologische Library Freie University Berlin 5 stars
From the outside, the Philologische library doesn’t seem like much. It corresponds well with the other defunct architecture surrounding the Free University. Even though it was famously designed by Norman Foster, I never took the time to explore where the architectural marvel of the building would reveal itself or why Norman Foster buildings were famous. I had walked through the library before but hadn't been impressed. Over time with it’s out of the way location, I never made the effort to get myself down there again. It was only by chance that I visited a friend working on the top floor of the library and saw what made this building so awesome. On the top floor, you will see how the beauty of the sideways-egg-shape of the building comes into play. With large red swivel chairs and a spaceship dome arching over you, it’s where the architecture of this building comes to life.

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jenna_brown
The Story of Berlin - an interactive city museum 4 stars
The 'Story of Berlin' museum takes you through an unbiased view of the history of the city - from the foundations to the Berlin Wall - while you stand in rooms made to look like they come from the specific time.

Unless you know the museum is there or pass it by chance it doesn't really stand out. It's inside the Ku'damn Karree shopping centre on Kurfurstendamm 207.

Everything in the musuem is in both English and German and there's plenty of interesting facts to read about the city's history. The coolest part is that underneath the museum is an original radiation proof bunker from the seventies complete with thousands of beds!! I wouldn't put this on a must do list if you only have a couple of days in Berlin but if you have longer and are around Ku'damn then it's definately worth an hour or two of your time.


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milandutch
Turkish Market Maybachufer 3 stars
The Turkish market on Maybachufer is like being transported to a chaotic world as you try to squeeze past Turkish women with strolling bags and others there for the atmosphere. Sellers are yelling their reduced produce at speedy repetitions, yards of cloth are being measured out and everything is just teeming with life. I forget that I am in Germany when I come here and feel as though I’ve been transported to Turkey. Since I don’t live in the area, I usually don’t buy much produce or other items here but I think it’s cheaper than most other predominantly German food markets. There is however at times, excessive pushing going on and it makes for an unpleasant, stressful experience when you come during its peak hours.

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jenna_brown
New Berlin Tours - three different walking tours of Berlin 5 stars
New Berlin Tours have five different tours that I've been on which I will write about seperately so you can just read what you're interested in! They are the Third Reich Tour, the Red Berlin Tour and the Free Walking Tour.

The free walking tour you ask? The guides work on tips, but of course you don't have to tip them. The guide I had just said that if you enjoy the tour and think you'd like to pay for it then you can. It starts every day at 11am and 1pm at Starbucks at Brandenburg Gate. It goes to Pariser Platz, the Reichstag, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, above Hitler's bunker, an original Nazi building, part of the wall, Checkpoint Charlie, Gerndarmenmarkt, Babel Platz and Museum Island. The guide I had was fantastic, she told us the history of each place we stopped and of the entire city and threw in plenty of jokes along the way.

It took about four hours and is well worth it!


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NOFXmike
The Deutscher Dom (German Cathedral) 3 stars
The Deutscher Dom (German Cathedral) is not a cathedral at all, but rather it is a museum explaining how the German parliamentary system has come to shape since the 1800’s. I found this to be one of the best done museums of its type, plus I’m a sucker for all things with the word “free” on them. That’s right, I said free, even with the audio guide in whatever language you want. There are five floors to explore and a lot of steps, but I found this museum to be great fun. This is the sort of thing for history buffs and maybe not for types like my girlfriend, for example, but did I mention the word free?

It’s located at Gendarmenmarkt 1, a short walk from Unter den Linden or Friedrichstrasse.


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NOFXmike
Overview of Berlin, from a Tour guide's point of view 4 stars
Berlin has what every major capital city has as far as tourism goes, which is an enormous amount to attempt to see and do in a short time frame. Literally every week I talk to people that just came from Berlin and they were happy with just 2-3 days. However, just as often I find people that feel they barely saw anything in 3-4 days in Berlin. From my experience, even if you plan each day to hit the first sight that opens right at opening time and go to the one that closes just before it closes, you still will need at least 5 days for Berlin. If you want to eat or sleep in there, I recommend 7 days. (of course 3 months would be best)

Things you should NOT cut from a trip to Berlin, even if you only have two days:
1. The Pergamon Museum
2. The Altes Museum
3. The Reichstag (it's free, open late, and has a great view)
4. Brandenburg Gate (again free, never closes...no excuse)

Apart from that, look through my other tips on Berlin, wear good shoes, and good luck.


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NOFXmike
Berliner Weisse mit Schuss 5 stars
Berliner Weisse mit Schuss is something you HAVE to experience while you are in Berlin. Now, I live in Munich which is without any doubt the beer capital of the world, however, Bavaria does not have very much variation, so when I get out of Bavaria, I want to try the local brews and this one is definitely different. It is essentially a very weak wheat beer, at only 2.8% alcohol by volume (remember American Budweiser is 5% by volume, as are most American, Canadian, and Mexican beers). What makes Berliner Weisse a real treat; however, is the “Schuss” (shot) of syrup they pour into it. You can have a choice of red or green at most places, though I’ve heard of a yellow option I’ve never actually seen it offered. The red shot is raspberry (Himbeersirup), the green is woodruff (Waldmeistersirup), and the yellow is lemon (Zitronensirup). Try’em all, you won’t get drunk very easily, but they taste great. I recommend the Waldmeister (green), my girlfriend recommends the raspberry (red). Prost!


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NOFXmike
Bus #100 5 stars
Bus #100 was one of the best tips we had gotten from our guide books and I’m still very happy we caught that tip, so I thought I’d pass it along. Since we were staying in West Berlin near the Bahnhof Zoo, we could catch bus #100 just outside the station and take it all the way through the very center of town to the TV tour if we wanted. What we did, which I recommend, is to get on #100, take it to the Siegessaeule, get out and spend a half hour, get back on bus #100, get off at Bellevue, take a few pictures and hop back on #100, and continue on to Unter den Linden or all the way to Museum island. We did this the second day of our visit as we had a city tour the first day to get our orientation, but bus #100 would give you a good orientation on its own. The best part is that it’s a double decker bus so you can see all the sights from the bus rather than taking the U-bahn or S-bahn and going under or around the sights.

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NOFXmike
Berlin's mass transit system 3 stars
Living in Munich for the last several years I’m a bit spoiled as far as mass transit systems, so when I go to a new city one of the things that I inevitably evaluate is their subway, suburban train, and bus systems. Berlin has what I would consider to be the most complicated you will find in Germany. Complicated of course doesn’t mean that it’s a bad system, just that for people that are not used to mass transit (Americans, Canadians, etc) may have a difficult time at first. Even so, I figure most people should be able to get around Berlin fairly easily and after a few short trips you’ll have confidence in the system. Berlin’s subways (U-bahns) are old, Berlin’s suburban trains (S-bahns) are old, but they’re still relatively on time and safe, very much functional. Just give it a go, it’s not that hard.


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NOFXmike
Schaulust museum pass 5 stars
The Schaulust museum pass works wonderful if you’re like me and want to save as much money as possible while still seeing everything. What this is, is a three day pass to most state owned museums as well as quite a decent number of other museums. Definitely check into the Schaulust museum pass before you pay for even one museum because it is likely that you will save quite a bit. Alternatively, you could buy a day pass for the state owned museum for the same cost as going to just one museum, however, if you’re going to a decent number of museums and not just a couple or three, then get the schaulust pass and start saving money!

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milandutch
Schlesisches Tor 5 stars
Schlesisches Tor is one of my favorite train stops in Berlin. It’s the perfect place to spend the whole day either an afternoon or an entire evening. Schlesisches Tor doesn’t have the least bit of pretension and is a comfortable mix of the local Turkish culture and a cool youth culture. You can find the best ice cream here, the best Turkish bakery goods, two clubs Watergate and 103, music venues, and numerous bars along Schlesisches Strasse. I like it better than Prenzlauer Berg because of this thriving union with an immigrant culture. The location is also close to and within a walking distance to Warschauer Strasse and the Spree heading toward Friedrichshain.

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jenna_brown
Berlin Christmas Markets - get into the silly season! 5 stars
Christmas markets!! I'm so glad I'm able to experience them here in Berlin as many times in December as I like! Food, food, food, handicrafts, Christmas decorations and gifts. My favourite markets are the ones set up across from Museum Island, they are a little tacky looking with the rides set up but I can't go past a good ride. If you want something a little more classy the only place to go is the Gendarmenmarkt Christmas markets. They're known as the most beautiful and prestigious, there is a small entry fee of one euro, but they're well worth it! There's also a small market at Potsdamer Platz with the best thing of all... a snow hill! Go down it on a tube and feel like you're five years old again!

Ok, so the things you have to try when you're there are, Glüwein (hot wine with cinamen, sugar and the choice of an added liquer), Grünkohl (it looks disgusting but it's not bad, look for the green spinach looking stuff with sausage), currywurst (sausage with ketchup and curry powder) and all the sweets you can handle!


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milandutch
Oranienburgstrasse 5 stars
S-bahn Oranienburgstrasse at night attracts the most tourists but also locals that are not allergic to tourists. Strangely enough, it has somehow still retained its cool factor. From 9pm to 10:30 you’ll find various pub crawls walking up and down Oranienburgstrasse starting off at a couple bars here. You’ll also see the street lined with prostitutes dressed in the same outfits. The area quiets down later in the evening since it is more of a party starter or dinner option rather than a late night end. The photography center C/O Berlin is off this stop as well as the Neue Synagoge to give the area a feeling of its Jewish past. In the other directions there is Monbijou park and a bridge that takes you over the Spree to Museum Island. In the summer, the area around the park turns into beach bars, where you’ll find half of Berlin stretched out in the sun.

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milandutch
Rosenthaler Platz 5 stars
U-bahn Rosenthaler Platz can swing both ways, you can either make it a Mitte evening or head up to Prenzlauer Berg and the main street it lets you off on, Torstrasse has something about it that screams border crossing. I think it’s a good place to meet if you don’t know what you want your evening to look like. Rosenthaler Platz is like Eberswalder Strasse in that it also has way too many intersections. Two huge main roads cross here with another smaller road going off on a tangent to add to the confusion. Not only that, for the one train station Rosenthaler Platz there are four exits, one on each corner so never try to make the actual station your meeting point. My favorite Internet café is in this area, St. Oberholz and also my one place where I can get pommes or fries before I catch my night bus. It’s the Turkish place on the upper left corner of Brunnen and Torstrasse. I say upper left because there are about as many döner shops as there are u-bahn exits to the station, almost one of every corner.

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milandutch
Eberswalder Strasse 5 stars
U-bahn stop Eberswalder Strasse is another one of those stops in Berlin that takes you straight to a 6-way intersection and no, its not easy to tell which one is Kastanien Allee, the place you’re most likely to be going. I like this station however because it does take you straight to the middle of the most fun and representative area of the neighborhood Prenzlauer Berg. Under the train tracks, you can also find one of the more famous places to get currywurst in town, Konnopke’s Imbiss. Here you’ll find everyone from locals to tourists getting a currywurst. It’s part of a Berlin experience. This station is fairly German; you won’t find a large immigrant base of Turkish people. It’s mainly German students and teenagers, punks, young foreign tourists, and some working professionals.

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milandutch
Weinmeister Strasse 5 stars
U-Bahn Weinmeister Strasse drops you off right in front of the Goethe Institute. Therefore, there are always young individuals trying to speak German at one of the many pizza and snack food places near this location. More so than Hackescher Markt, Weinmeister Strasse is in the middle of all the cool shops and numerous places to eat such as Dolores, Schwarzenraben, Monsieur Vuong, and Mädchen Italien. I like this stop because of its low-key neighborhood feel but dislike it for its two exits that are extremely far apart. One lands at the exit I just described and the other in a disorienting no man’s land of Mitte. If memory serves me correctly, I think there is even a stop at the corner of another area of Mitte. Make sure you exit the right way, towards the Goethe Institute, unless you know where you’re going.

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