Highlights from a week in Berlin during October 2019.
Refugee Voices Tour
My favorite from this trip was an excellent walking tour led by Syrian refugees. Learn about their personal stories interwoven with parallels to the rise of Nazism and Communism. Ends with dinner at a Syrian restaurant.
Cozy, quiet hotel on a popular street in Prenzlauer Berg. Small pub on site, and lots of options close by.
Spent a lot of time biking around the city. Bike share is plentiful, bike lanes are everywhere, and it’s a great way to explore. Some bike share apps don’t work well with foreign credit cards or phone number, but Jump e-bikes were available during my visit and work with the same Jump or Uber apps as in the US.
Oktoberfest in Alexanderplatz
Not quite Bavaria, but a nice place to sit in the sun people watching on a cool day with a brat, pomme frites, and a proper radler.
Berlin Craft Beer Tour
German beer purity laws and consumer preference for big brands means the craft brew scene is much smaller than you might assume. This tour helps you find some good gems. Included the Straßenbrau brewery and the Protokoll pub.
Excellent burger joint located in a former train station toilet, found via Attaché on YouTube.
Dolden Madel beer bar
American-style craft beer bar with good food and beer garden.
German Unity Day
Tiergarten Park and Brandenburg Gate turned into a big festival with carnival rides, beer gardens, etc.
East Berlin exhibit at Museum Ephraim-Palais
Really cool exhibit of life in East Berlin during Communism, and not mobbed by tourists like the DDR Museum.
Topography of Terror
Documentation center of the site of the former Nazi SS.
Artists village in some back alleys, covered in murals and graffiti art.
Die Hackeschen Hof
Cluster of courtyards with lots of small shops. Good design souvenirs at Promobo.
Tried to take a day trip to this area of forested canals, boats, and kayaks – but it was cold and rainy. Walked around the town of Lubbenau for bit. Need to go back in good weather.
Winterfeldmarkt at Nollendorf Plaza
Large fleamarket with good street food options. Port-a-pottie on the periphery.
Street Art Museum
Small museum dedicated to street art. Free and worth a visit.
Former brewery turned into a cultural center. Food trucks on the weekend.
“Wall Park” is large public park on a former section of the Berlin Wall. Gigantic flea market and many food options. Outdoor amphitheater with karaoke, street performers, etc. Watch graffiti artists work on a section of the wall.