In case you haven’t already heard, Berlin is one of the best cities to visit in Europe. Alright, alriiight… maybe I’m just a little biased since I’ve called it home the last several years. But what I can say is that no matter how long I’ve lived here, I’m continuously finding new and different ways to enjoy this city for all it’s worth. Therefore, I decided to put together this short guide of 10 things you have to do when visiting Berlin.


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1) Spend Sundays with the locals

Sundays are an institution in Berlin. Most everything is closed, so there’s no grocery shopping, clothes shopping or getting anything checked off your to-do list. Instead, take the opportunity to enjoy your day off and head to Prenzlauer Berg where you’ll find the iconic Mauerpark – a massive flea market chocked-full of sellers from all corners of the city. Once you’ve found some treasures in the market, head to the lawn just outside where you can enjoy a few hours of bearpit karaoke. Finish the outing by ordering a waffle with whipped cream and cherries from Kauf Dich Glücklich on the nearby Oderberger Straße.

2) Treat your inner foodie

You might not think of Michelin Stars when you think of Berlin (although fun fact: we do have them), but don’t let that deter your quest for delicious food. Head to Markthalle Neun for Street Food Thursdays where you can indulge in everything from the finest Thai, Kimchi, and Tako-yaki to Berlin’s best burgers and traditional German knödel (dumplings).

3) Relax on the beach

That’s right, you read correctly, Berlin has several “beach bars” located along the Spree – complete with palm trees and piña coladas. If you’re in the city center head to Strandbar Mitte located in the Monbijou Park. If you’re farther East, check out Yaam (located near the East Side Gallery), the Young African Art Market which offers live Reggae music and beach volleyball.

4) See all of the city – in style

Berlin is as wonderful and great as it is far and wide – that is to say, a trip from point A to point B on the public transport can sometimes take a while (like 45 min to an hour!). Why not skip the dark underground and explore the city in style, with your own personal driver from Blacklane, a professional car service ready to show you all of Berlin’s beauties? Not only will they zip you from Alexanderplatz to Museum Island to Unter den Linden, but Blacklane will also pick you up from the airport, so you can start exploring the right way from the get go. You can also book ahead for meeting, dinners and/or a show, so you’re sure to arrive wherever you’re going in style.

5) Go with the flow (on the Spree)

Ok, we’ve definitely mentioned this one before – but it’s so great it deserves repeating. You can rent small houseboats from places like Wasserkutsche and sail your worries away on the open waters of the Spree. Equipped with small kitchens and plenty of space for relaxing; just bring your friends, some food, music and you’re all set for a day of leisure.

6) Get cultured

Fancy some culture? Tour Berlin’s Kulturforum, a collection of cultural buildings built up in the 50s and 6os on the edge of West Berlin after many of the city’s cultural highlights had been banished behind the Berlin Wall. Located near Potsdamer Platz, you can easily find the Neue Nationalgalerie, Museum of Decorative Arts and more. End your tour with a concert at the Philharmonie, Berlin’s most famous concert hall acclaimed for both acoustics and architecture – you won’t regret it.

7) Enjoy a deserted airport

 No Berlin guide would be complete without the famous Tempelhofer Feld. A deserted airport since 2008, Tempelhof’s vast open areas are open to the public. Join the masses on a sunny day where you’ll find locals barbecuing, flying kites and playing kubb. It’s often host of fun open airs and festivals, too, so keep an eye on the events calendar.

8) Escape to the lakes

One of my favorite things about Berlin is that with a quick ride on the S-Bahn (above ground trains) you can find yourself surrounded by gorgeous nature and expansive lake complexes. Head toward Potsdam, just southwest of the city, for kayak rentals and paddleboard lessons or go solo to the gorgeous Wannsee, Schlachtensee, Krumme Lanke or Plötzensee.

9) Go back in time

Take a break from the normal hustle and bustle of the busy metropolis and explore old-town Berlin in the Nikolaiviertel which was founded around 1200 and remains the historical heart of the city. Built around a massive church, photo-worthy itself, the Nikolaiviertel contains several boutique shops and many traditional pubs, including Berlin’s oldest pub from the 1600s, Zur letzten Instanz. Pop in early for a spontaneous refreshment or book ahead for a table as they are usually busy.

10) Indulge in Berlin’s notorious nightlife

If this city has any reputation, it’s likely related to the famed night-life that people just can’t seem to get enough of – I mean, we all know about the Berghain (am I right?). But true enough, there is something for everyone here. Whether you’re into house, hip-hop or old-school hits, Berlin’s got you covered on all fronts. Enjoy mild summer nights by the water at Club der Visionäre, or head to the very popular Warschauer Straße for a string of places to explore, including the Astra Kulturhaus.
I could go on and on about the many diverse offerings this city has – but I’ll leave with these for now. Tell me, what on this list most strikes your fancy? Or, do you have any favorite things about Berlin that should be listed here? Let me know in the comments below. 
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This is a guest post by Briana Goad.

briana goad Bri is a small-town girl from the Southern U.S. living in big-city Europe. Originally from Athens, Georgia, she planted roots in Berlin in 2011 and lives for travel, good weather, and great food. Whether it’s relaxing on the beaches of Belize, interviewing trendsetters on the streets of Lisbon, or touring the towering city of Tokyo, Bri lives a life on the go and is always up for the next adventure. In between her travels she works as a freelance designer from her home studio. Follow her adventures at home and abroad on Instagram and her blog.