When the festive period is over and our bank balances are edging ever nearer to the red, there’s only one way to beat those January blues. Edge slightly nearer to the red with the BA Sale! Though this involves spending money, how else could you ever get a 4* city break for around the £100 mark?! We ventured to Berlin for a long weekend – here’s what we got up to.
Berlin is definitely a party city. During the day, even at the tourist spots, the city never seems that busy or crowded. But it really comes alive at night!
We managed to pack quite a lot into just a few days. Here are the top sights to see, including a couple we didn’t make it to.
1. Brandenburg Gate. This former city gate is one of the most famous landmarks in Berlin. It’s beautiful and is a must visit – it’s also nearby other landmarks so is a good place to start your sightseeing. There isn’t really much more to it than that so I’ll let the photos do the talking!
2. Holocaust Memorial. The 2,711 concrete slabs ensure that the weight of the holocaust really does hit home. However, there is something a bit strange about seeing people playing hide and seek or running over the top of the memorial…
3. East Side Gallery. This part of the Berlin Wall has been kept in tact, preserving the 105 paintings by artists around the world.
4. Fernsehturm Berlin. This TV tower can be seen from most parts of Berlin. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a chance to check it out but I’ve heard good things about both the view and the restaurant at the top of the tower.
To be completely honest, we weren’t blown away by the food in Berlin but, of course, we had our fair share of currywurst! We did also come across a few nice looking restaurants, but only got to eat in one of them.
1. Mutzenbacher. We went into this restaurant on the first night but it was fully booked. It had a really nice, romantic vibe, with candles on all the tables and dim lighting. Obviously, I can’t speak for the food but it has excellent reviews so I would definitely like to try it out if I go back. If you’re going to give it a go, make sure you book well in advance!
3. Hasir. The Turkish area of Kroezberg (which is like the Shoreditch of Berlin) has a selection of authentic Turkish restaurants to choose from. We went to Hasir, which was delicious and great value – though I imagine most of the restaurants in this area would be pretty good!
As everyone knows, Berlin is all about the beer. But in my quest to stick to fruit beer like I did in Brussels, I came across green beer! It’s Berliner Weisse, which is a white beer, with a shot of Woodruff syrup, and it’s amazing! You can also get it with a shot of Raspberry syrup for red beer but the green was my favourite. It’s not for everyone but definitely worth one try.
Like I said, Berlin is a true party city, so we tried out quite a few clubs. We did, of course, try to get into the infamous Berghain…and failed. Didn’t really want to go anyway…
1. Watergate. This waterside club has floor to ceiling windows and a super chilled vibe. It doesn’t really get going until around 1am but it’s quite nice to arrive a bit earlier and have a few drinks. We went here on the first night, and found out first hand just how serious the no pictures rule is in Berlin clubs. We took a selfie with the view of the river in the background and before I had even put my phone away some guy (Bouncer? Manager? Citizen enforcing the local law? Who knows!) descended on us and demanded I delete the picture while he watched to make sure…pretty weird. Needless to say, we didn’t take photos in any other clubs 🙈
2. Salon zur wilden Renate. This was my favourite club that we visited. It’s like a huge house party with multiple rooms and levels – so much fun!
3. House of Weekend. This stylish club is on the top floor of a hotel, with excellent views of the city.
1. Photoautomat. These photo booths can be found across the city, and the photos come out black and white, making it a nice souvenir!
2. Buddy Bears. Big painted bear sculptures can also be found in random places around the city, so look out for them 👀
The Fine Print
We stayed at the Innside Berlin hotel, which is a short walk from Ostbahnhof station. It was an excellent location – everything we did was only a few stops away. The hotel, however, was not amazing – it was clean and nice enough but for such a big hotel, it was completely dead. We only saw other guests once, and with the long, hospital-like corridors it was actually quite creepy 👻 A Berlin city break can definitely be done on a budget. We only spent €400 between us over a 3 day & 2 night stay. It’s super easy to get around using the Metro, and a 3 day Welcome Card (travel pass that also gets you discounts across the city) only costs €27.50.
If you’re looking for a romantic city break, Berlin isn’t the best choice but for a drinking/clubbing holiday with a bit of culture on the side, it’s a winner!
Have you been to Berlin? What did you think of it?