I have not been on a weekend trip in ages, and this time it this has been extra special as it is my first solo-trip in a long time. Some time ago, I headed over to Berlin to meet some friends and breathe some big city vibes. I have been to Berlin many times and every locally abroad weekend in Berlin is special. Let me take you one and enjoy some real Berliner insights. A big thanks to this lovely bunch, who helped me find the extra locally abroad spots for you.
So without further to do let’s take a weekend trip to crazy Berlin.
How to get there?
Berlin is very well connected planes busses and trains are going there from everywhere in Europe and even from outside of Europe. There is a massive airport in the making, well … it was supposed to be ready in 2013, but maybe in the next 50 years it will be done, we are not sure, no rush…
But until the new airport is ready, you can still fly to Berlin to the Airports Schönefeld or Tegel. The Bus Station has cheap buses to many other cities in Germany and Europe, and there are many stations with trains connecting the rest of Germany as well.
Getting to Berlin is pretty easy, and the public transport in the city works well so you will reach your accommodation without much trouble.
Where to Stay During Your Weekend in Berlin? – What to Do? And What to Expect Where?
I obviously stayed with friends, but I have been in hostels and Airbnbs in Berlin before so I have some ideas for you. There are many unique neighborhoods in the city, and it depends what you are looking for during your weekend trip. I highlighted a couple of areas I like to hang out in. I promise I will create a guide for every single one. Therefore I need to go back and research more and more. They are coming along though.
Warschauer Straße and Friedrichshain– Hello Party People and Bar Lovers
I know… Many people come to Berlin to party! And it is a great place to do just that. Countless clubs and bars are open all day and all night during the weekends. So if you are up for that just head over to the area around Warschauer Straße and hit the RAW-Gelände or some other clubs not far from there. Skip the Berghain if you do not want to spend your weekend in a long line waiting to be judged to go to a club. Focus on places like Sisyphus or Kater Blau, or get in touch with a local to hear about the best party spots.
But the area is not only for those ravers among you. There are plenty of small bars and restaurants of all cuisines in the area. There is a lovely flea market at the RAW-Gelände on Sundays and a beautiful weekly market with food and crafts just a few blocks away at the Travelplatz. The area has its quiet corners as well.
Oh yeah and Friedrichshain is also where the famous East Side Gallery is located. So get your camera ready to take those shots with the artwork on the Berlin Wall leftovers. The area is also very green, and there are a lot of lovely parks around, where you can hang out on warmer days.
Kreuzberg – Cafés, Art and Everything You Want from Berlin
Kreuzberg is the neighborhood next to Friedrichshain and one of my favorite areas in Berlin.
Especially the Oranienburger Straße and the area around Kottbusser Tor have a lot of small shops, cafés, and some great Bars and restaurants. There are also some nice and small art galleries around, and you might run into a spontaneous market or pop up shop. The area has a great vibe and is still developing so you can find some authentic food there as well and meet some real Berliners. There are some small theaters like the Meringhoftheater as well that have great readings, plays, and other exciting events.
In Kreuzberg, you can get a nice mix of peace and quiet, culture and nightlife. And with the close by Neuköln even more.
Prenzlauer Berg- Hip and Cozy
Prenzlauer Berg is a quieter cool area of Berlin. A lot of hip and young families are living here, also many young hipsters and entrepreneurs. Here you will be spoiled with nomad cafés and instagrammable food in restaurants. But seriously there some great cafés in the area and you will find some stunning AirBnBs in the neighborhood. It also well connected by bus, tram or subway (U-Bahn).
Charlottenburg – Quiet and Green
Charlottenburg is a more residential area of Berlin but with the Schloss Charlottenburg (Charlottenburg Palace) and the park around it the river going right through it and some sweet and quiet cafés and restaurants it is the perfect place for those who look for a bit more quiet time after discovering the busy parts of the city. The area is an old part of Berlin with beautiful townhouses and lots of green. It is well connected to the other parts of the capital so you will have no trouble getting anywhere. And the Kudamm is just a few bus stops away… perfect for some shopping.
What to do on a Weekend in Berlin?
Berlin is a city packed of activities for any kind of taste. You could go to a club on a Friday night and step out on Sunday afternoon, visit museums all day long, do some shopping, visits flea markets or just hang out in different cafés and international restaurants. There is also a lot of history and contradiction to see in this city. But as this is a locally abroad weekend, I will not go too much into the main sights like Brandenburger Tor or the East side gallery (which you should visit though if it is your first time in the city) but more into other highlights and areas you should check out during your weekend in Berlin.
Visit a Berlin Flea Market
One of the most common Sunday activities in Berlin is to visit a flea market. And there are a lot of them. The most famous one is the all year around Mauerpark, which I still love going to. There is food, unique stuff to look at and in summer you can just hang out in the park next to it! But it might not be the best place if you are really after some treasures and bargains. My local friends just took me to the one in Akona Park, only about a hundred meters away from the main action. And there you can haggle and find a great selection of clothes, furniture, and other flea market goods. I really recommend going there if you look for vintage glasses. And there are so many other markets that are worth visiting. The same mentioned RAW Gelände has a huge one with mainly clothes and food from all over the world.
The lovely thing about flea markets in Berlin that they are open the whole year around. They shut down earlier in winter, but you will still be able to visit them on a colder weekend in Berlin. I, however, suggest you have a warm cup of coffee or mulled wine handy.
Pick a Museum
Berlin has many museums that are worth visiting. But I suggest that for a locally abroad weekend in Berlin, you pick one and give it some time. On this trip, I had just been to the Jewish Museum, and I can highly recommend it. It is amazing. There are fixed exhibitions and a lot of rotating ones connected to Jewish culture or created by Jewish artists. The entrance for students is €3.50, and the normal one is €8, which is an excellent price for what you get. We spent around 3 hours in the museum and did not see everything in debt. We had the chance to catch a stunning installation and an interesting exhibition about Jerusalem. But they always have something remarkable and unique going on.
If you are more looking for a museum about the city or something lighter you should check out the Currywurst Museum or Story of Berlin. And if you want to learn more about the GDR, you should book a tour in the former Stasi Prison. They are mostly lead by former prisoners and can be tough but very interesting.
And there are so many other museums you could check out like the Pergamon Museum or countless others. If you happen to catch a rainy weekend, you know what to do.
Party, Sleep, Eat repeat.
As I mentioned, Berlin is full of Bars, restaurants, and Clubs. You can find all types of cuisines and all kinds of bars here. Have a look at the different areas and what they offer. Make sure grab at least one Döner or Falafel and hit some of the local clubs for a great concert or a fun night out. There are also all kinds of bars like the Absinth Bar just focusing on the green ferry. Or other more cozy places that serve you everything from craft beer to fresh lemonade. Some of them like Fräulein Langer have a tremendous nostalgic vibe and are perfect for a cozy beer to round up your weekend in Berlin.
Have a Shopping Spree
There are many small shops in the area of Kreuzberg, Friedrichshain that sell second-hand items or just different clothes often designed by locals. There are fancier and Hipster places in Prenzlauer Berg. And there are big shopping malls close to Postdammer Platz and the Alexanderplatz. I also recommend to take a walk through Kreuzberg and hit some of the small bookstores, they have books in any language and some real Bargains. One of my favorites is Another Country or Berliner Büchertisch Gneisenauerstr. At the second one, kids can take a free book back home.
And my best advice on what to do during your weekend in Berlin is, let the city take you. Just wander around the streets, and you will find some unique spots to visit, and something is always going on in Berlin.
Where to Eat During Your Weekend in Berlin?
Well, that is hard to say as it is hard to choose! But here are some of my highlights. Make sure to have Falafel while in Berlin! It is a must eat.
Joseph Rot Diehle – For Some Traditional Treats and Reads
This place is named after one of the most important Austrian writers. During his time in Berlin, Joseph Rot came to the bakery and café located at the very same spot to write. Now they turned this place in the perfect homage, you can get hearty German food there, try their local beer and buy a book. All in one spot. I recommend the classic Bread with something combinations or the dumplings with mushroom sauce. They offer seasonal specials as well. The Joseph Rot Diehle is not far away from Postdammer Platz.
Pequeña Habana – A Piece of Cuba in Berlin
As Cuban cuisine is something, not everyone is familiar with but still curious about. For us, it is a piece of home, and we are interested to know how the food tastes like and how well prepared it is. No complaints when it comes to this restaurant. No matter if you are on a weekend getaway in Berlin or live here and just want to try something else. Make sure to try this delicious food at Pequeña Habana. They know their beans and rice! They are located in Schöneberg.
Mom’s Creation – Asian Treats
For some Asian treats and Vegan food, I can recommend Mom’s Creation. The Atmosphere is excellent some delicious eats are waiting for vegans, vegetarians, and other food lovers. I also love their decoration and the vibes. Oh yeah and the food!
And of course, there are so many other places that are just amazing and really special. Berlin is the perfect place for culinary adventures, that go way beyond Döner and Currywurst.
My suggestion is you have a look at this fantastic Food Blog by a Berlin local: TwoFoodiesEating.
As there is so much to do in Berlin I decided to write more about this vibrant city, food guides, party guides and culture tips are in the making. So stay tuned, more suggestions are following. But for now, enjoy your locally abroad weekend in Berlin.