if you know my blog, you know i like to rant about german beer. “it’s so boring – i fall asleep while drinking”. there is an alternative – there is a light. lovely people with lovely tastebuds have discovered the craft beers. the scene has started out slowly, but is getting bigger and bigger.
to check out their latest creations, go to the braufest berlin. located in one of my favourite spots in berlin, the RAW temple, from the 14th till the 17th may there will be beer!
let the games begin. Roughly 20 breweries will be participating and there is enough room to present themselves and their beers.
go to S-warschauer strasse for all the fun
The public transport strike is suspended for the next two weeks. People and visitors in Berlin and Brandenburg can normal use buses, trams and other public transportation. Nevertheless, the labor dispute between the union and the german rail is still unresolved. So take the opportunities to use the public transportation as long as possible to reach interesting attractions, museums and exhibitions in and around Berlin. Our tip: For only 7,40 Euro you have a day ticket for the tariff areas ABC. Use it to leave Berlin and visit Potsdams beautiful city and parks (Sanssouci for example) or the movie park Babelsberg. For more infos ask our friendly stuff.
most parts of the wall have been torn down shortly after reunification. there are only a few parts left like the east side gallery albeit they fail to communicte a feeling. berlin was a dirty place – coal heating and smokey factories on the eastern part, punks and alternative culture in the west. present-day berlin is rather a different one. Although you can still smell the past here and there ( especially in görlitzer park)
this beatiful panoramic exhibition gives you an authentic insight in the everyday live on the border between the 2 berlins. experience border fortifications and the daily horror at Yadegar Asisi’s Panorama.
today i will introduce you to some of my friend’s favourite running tracks. there are countless beautiful routes. since Berlin is quite flat, both cycling and running are rather a pleasure than pain.
1) the easy – if you just want to do some laps
just 1 km north of the hostel is a running track for doing laps. take a right from the hostel and you will see the stadium on your right at mauerpark.
2) the big lap – the airport run
how about a 7km lap? since tempelhof airport shut down a couple of years ago it became a big recreation spot for berliners. among runners you will see kite surfers, skaters and urban gardeners.there is a 7km lap and a shorter one for cheaters. the best thing – no cars to be seen
take the U2 to stadtmitte and change there to U8 – get off at platz der luftbrücke
3) the friendly neighborhood bunker run
a few steps away from our hostel is a splendid park: volkspark friedrichshain (people’s park freidrichshain). due to its running track’s great bone friendly surface (no asphalt but dirt) it is very popular. for those of you who want some extra sweat – take a turn onto the hilly thing in the middle. it is not only a great exercise but a history lesson. you are standing on a former anti aircraft bunker. extra perk: cafe schönbrunn
1km east of the hostel – ask at reception for detailed directions
4) the canal run
if you enjoy water, beer gardens, thriving neighborhoods and history, this is the route for you.
start at U hallesches tor and take a left eastwards along landwehrkanal. take another left at the canal’s forking – once you hit a massive alley (puschkinallee) take a right. this way takes you to leafy treptower park. in the heart of the park you will find the russian memorial. running back along the river brings you to the next s bahn stop.
5) the classic – tierpark
yes of course, there are also some nudies in the park. however, there is much more to explore. this massive park in the heart of berlin connects the historic centre in east berlin and the city west. the park is situated roughly 4 km from our hostel, alternatively you can take the U2 to potsdamer platz -the same line takes you back from zoo station.
…and we have plenty of plasters for your blisters at the reception
Unless you are capable of time travel you will never see Hitler’s Bunker. The Red Army destroyed it in 1947. An information board on the original location at Gertrud-Kolmar-Straße corner In den Ministergärten gives you the best impression of the size and its history.
However, there are still some WWII fortresses left to admire. Since Berlin is built on a swamp most bunkers are Hochbunkers, meaning overhead hoppers. This makes them not only spectacular but also better photo opportunities.
Here are some of my favs.
1) Reichsbahnbunker Friedrichstraße
Built in 1943. After the war it was used as a prison by the notorious NKDW, later as storage for textiles and tropical fruits from Cuba. Between 1992 and 1995 this was the HQ of Berlin’s gabber scene.
2003 the Boros Collection (contemporary art collection) moved in and made it open to public. Highly recommended! Book well in advance http://www.sammlung-boros.de/besuch/info.html
2) Hochbunker Pallasstrasse
What a beauty. This hulk was only finished on the 1980 and is still used as a bunker nowadays.This one, as most, was built by forced labour from occupied countries. US army tried to bring this bunker down with plenty of dynamite after the end of the war, however they did not succeed. 1977 this ghastly building was accompanied with another beast – 10 story concrete prefab on stills. A must see for urbanism junkies.
Climbing on top of the remains of this flak tower gives you a breathtaking view of north Berlin. You can also arrange a visit to the adjoined cold war bunker complex with the guides of berliner-unterwelten.de who are more than happy to introduce you to the horrors of everyday war life. http://berliner-unterwelten.de/home.1.1.html
You might be travelling with kids, or you wake up one morning and feel like Tom Hanks in Big.
For both occasions Berlin boast tons of possibilities to indulge in childhood mode.
Don’t we all love those funny furry things on 4 legs? Berlin has 2 Zoos to chose from, one in the east, one in the west. For all who prefer colour over fur – go to the aquarium. Of course we do have 2of those. There is one in the west and have a guess where the other one is. I recommend going with the west zoo and aquarium since they are adjoined and can be both visited easily at once.
When I first went to Lego land I was 25 and I didn’t’ regret it at all. So colourful! So many shapes! So ouch! I once read the lego brick is the most painful object you can step on so be careful. For those who do not like to interact with this world I recommend to go to the Computerspielemuseum. They have a fantastic collection of over 22 000 computer games and 300 consoles, including the original PONG
Your kid will probably love the Mitmachmuseum (join in museum) an ambitious combination of exhibitions, mazes, print shop, soap factory and jumping stand. If you are more of a spectator, go to Potsdam and take a tour in Babelsberg film studio. Vocano? Check, explosions? Check. Burning cars? Check
2 museums suitable for both, old and young, are the technical museum (look, it’s a plane) and the natural science museum (dinosaurs galore). A good idea might be also Madame Tussauds located Unter den Linden. There you’ll find some 2 statues with world-renowned haircuts: A. Hitler and J. Bieber
we need to face (i said look in the face!) the fact – those kinky Germans get naked all the time.
at the beach: naked
in the club: naked
in every cafe in prenzlauer berg you will spot at least one breast: naked
german kinkiness is even discussed on yahoo answers.
so, let’s get down to the nitty gritty. the number one place to see some bare skinis a sauna or a hamam . the latter is unfortunately single sex only so half the fun for some of us.
my top 5 choices for saunas in berlin are:
1) Gewölbe sauna
no frills, just good cleansing heat. a local sauna for local people. cheap, clean and instead of a quenching kale juice people drink beer in between sessions.
staring level: zero
a local sauna for good looking locals. popular among expats, so if you left your hometown because you were sick of everyone, there is a good chance to bump into sb you dislike. beautiful courtyard to cool off and reasonably priced.
Rykestrasse 10 | 10405 Berlin
staring level: hello neighbour
bit zen: outdoor bamboo garden – bit acid:indoor „wow, look at those colors“.
a rather small and atmospheric sauna for those looking for solitude and relaxation.
Schönhauser Allee 177 · 10119 Berlin
staring level: too enlightend to care
more a spa than a sauna, incl. a thermal bath and a underwater music floating „damn i wish i was stoned“ pool
the sauna itself is top notch. if you ever wanted a honey facial or a classic infusion this is your place.
staring level: look at me damn you! look at me
5) Vabali Sauna
ever wanted to go to india, thailand and the other place where all rich people go? all at once? check out this gem. it’s more like an ample village with a lot of space to ream and relax.
staring level: hello you
relax.there is no chance of meeting me in any of the above mentioned since i had 2 bags of chips while writing this.
a place where dreams come true: a späty (C) Daniel Gregors
So you wake up in the morning and realise you have nothing to eat. Or lack some other important personal items, like clean undies .
Thing is, all shops are closed on Sunday in Germany so what are you going to do? Well, you could stay in bed and wait.
On Chorinerstr. corner Fehrbellinerstr iIs a späty which is always open. They have basics but be aware, they are more expensive than normal grocery stores. If you are not satisfied with their range, here is a list with shops open all year round: Supermarket:
Kaisers at main train station 8am – 10pm
Edeka at Friedrichsstrasse S-bahns station 0am – 10pm
Rewe and Lidl at Ostbahnhof ( next to eastside gallery) 7am – midnight Pharmacy:
Apotheke im Hauptbahnhof ( main train station) open 24/7
Apotheke at Alexanderplatz: 1pm-6pm
Apotheke at Friedrichstrasse: 9am – 8pm
There are also emergency pharmacies, please ask us at the reception. We are happy to find one for you Drug store:
Rossmann at main train station : 8am -10pm
Rossmann at Alexanderplatz: 8am -10pm Souvenirs
there are 2 flea markets in walking distance from the eastseven hostel. Alternatively you can find some official ones at Alexanderplatz station . (open 08amUhr -8pm)
Oh, 2 things you don’t need to worry about: booze and fags. These essentials are available everywhere all year round.