Berlin is one of our favourite cities in the world, and writing this post has given me serious Berlin blues! When can we next visit?! With three trips under our belts already, we would go back again in a heartbeat – it’s somewhere that feels a lot like home. Berlin is trendy, cool, quirky and vibrant – and will give you different experiences each time you go. Here are some of our favourite things to do in this wonderful city.
Watch open air karaoke in Mauerpark.
Every Sunday, Berlin residents gather in Mauerpark to trawl the extensive flea markets looking for a bargain or a prized antique. Make sure you check it out and spend some time bartering with the stall owners – whether you’re looking for furniture, clothes, accessories, instruments, or art. If you’re just looking for some street food and a beer – there are plenty of great options for good food and drink too.
At its busiest times, the park is packed with talented buskers and street artists, but the main musical attraction is the open air karaoke! Every Sunday, in the small amphitheatre within the park, an open air karaoke session is held that attracts a large and supportive crowd! Grab a few beers and settle down amongst the crowds for a sing-a-long to some of your favourite songs for a lazy musical afternoon!
Eat a delicious burger in an old public toilet!
You haven’t eaten a burger until you’ve eaten a burger in Berlin, and Burgermeister is the perfect place to start. This burger shack is actually a 100-year-old open air restaurant underneath the elevated U-Bahn tracks – and it used to be a public toilet.
Burgermeister only has outside seating and areas to stand while you eat and drink, and small and large groups share tables as the place gets busier. The menu is pretty basic – just burgers, beers and fries, but you won’t be disappointed. The place is popular with locals and tourists alike, so it gets busy – aim for an early lunch or dinner to beat the crowds! For a more detailed review of Burgermeister, check out our post on the best burger in Berlin.
Have a picnic on a disused airport runway.
The former Tempelhof Airport is now one of the most popular public parks in Berlin. After the airport closed in 2008, the city reclaimed the space and it is now one of the world’s largest buildings in a central area for public use. Tempelhof Park has a 6 kilometre cycling trail for cycling, jogging or walking, a 2.5 hectare BBQ area, and a dog walking field and a huge picnic area to visitors.
If you’re interested in aviation, this is the perfect place to explore – you can walk on the old runways and around the old terminal buildings. Berliners are lucky to have such an enormous open space in the middle of their city and if you’re visiting the city, it’s a picnic experience with a difference!
Swim in the river, in a pool?
The Badeschiff is the place to go day or night for something a little unusual! It’s an old barge that has been turned into a swimming pool, moored in the East Harbour section of the River Spree. When the weather is hot in Berlin, this is a great spot to cool off whilst still enjoying the sun and views of the city. At night, it turns into a club. Winter weather shouldn’t stop you either – as at this time of year, saunas are added to keep you nice and warm.
The bathing season runs from May to September, and the pool is open from 08:00 to midnight Monday-Sunday. With entry at only 5 Euros, it’s a cheap way to spend a sunny afternoon.
Strike a pose in a Fotoautomat.
Seventeen Fotoautomat machines are scattered around Berlin (check out a full map here) and you haven’t experienced the true Berlin unless you had your photo taken in one!
These are retro, passport photo machines that have stood the test of time, and offer a fun and cheap way to secure some Berlin memories. For just 2 Euros you can get a strip of 4 black and white old fashioned passport photos. Cram your group into the tiny booth and strike a pose or 4, and within a few minutes you’ll have a Berlin souvenir to take home.
Watch out! As soon as you put your money in, the timer begins so if you don’t want to get caught out, make sure your camera ready before putting your coins in the slot!
Pairofpassports.com is a travel blog by Hannah and Rob from Peterborough, UK. They're happiest when they are exploring a new place or planning their next trip. One day they want to travel full time, but until then PairofPassports.com is the place where they will record their travel experiences and tips as they explore the world. email@example.com.