THIS WEEKEND
Berlin

City in transformation
Arriving in Berlin can be like arriving at a buzzing construction site, and indeed it is. The last decades shitloads of money have been invested in rebuilding the city, and it changes so rapidly that even a 5 year old guidebook can be outdated. It is common joke among the Berliners to say that they don't need to go anywhere, as the city changes so rapidly around them.

Berlin has always been a city packed with culture and history. In the 1920s it was the promising metrropolis of cabarets, decadense and a growing avant garde culture. Being the seat of Hitler during WWII made it a darling target for the allies bombings. The city also became the mere symbol of the Soviet Uniuons suppression of Eastern Europe, and the fall of the Berlin Wall marked the beginning of the end of the East Block.

Today the cultural heritage is still an important part, with 3 opera houses, 3 symphony orchestras, 2 national museums (the museums total to over 170), loads of private art galleries and even more pubs and restaurants. Also, as the eastern part of the city is being renovated and turned into atteliers, galleries and cafs, it welcomes many young artists and free-thinkers. The movie industry is still going strong, and the city even has its own Hollywood, thhe Babelsberg studios.

But don't fear the pulse, the city is also packed with palacecs and parks between forests, rivers and canals, and heaps of bicycle trails.

A couple of places of interest

Reichstag
The historic Parliament building is a must-see. It is topped with an awesome dome that you can ascend upon.

Brandenburg Gate
Maybe the most famous landmark of Berlin. This multi-arched gateway represents the old divide between east and west. It dates from 1791 and is the lone survivor of Berlins former 14 gates.

Berlin Wall
Along the the Great Wall of China, the Berlin Wall was one of the longest structures ever built to keep people separated. Touch the history, pick up a miniature model of the wall, old DDR flags and military paraphernalia. Do not however be surprised if Berlines shrug their shoulders and say "Who cares any more?" when you ask for it.

Unter den Linden
The heart of the former East Berlin, and the road walked upon by princes and princesses during Berlins good ol' days. It is named after it's thousand linden trees, which during Hitlers reign actually were cut down to make space for flagpoles. However, the trees were replanted and today it offers a pleasant stroll loaded with sights.

Where to get stuffed

Dicke Wirtin
A typical Berlinerkneipe in Western Berlin, smoky and old. Extremely cheap Gulaschsuppe.

Lekkerbek
Near Checkpoint Charlie in the eastern part. Bakery/cafeteri that have cheap simple dishes.

Where to shake you moneymaker

Quasimodo Live
Jazz, blues and boogie.

Ewige Lampe
Offers quality blues and New Orleans-style jazz.

Tip: Pick up a copy of Zitty or Tip, sold at newsstands, they offer a complete listing of what's happening.

Tours

Insider Tour
Take our ALL main sites tour and visit the war bunkers, Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, the Wall and much much more. Stroll into the history of Imperial, Third Reich, Cold War and the new "Capital Republik" Berlin of today. Offers everything from bike tours to pubcrawls.

New Berlin Tours
A free tour of Berlin, which allows everyone, no matter their budget, to fully discover this wonderful city. Expert guides share with you their personal stories and insights during this intriguing, 3.5 hour English-language overview walking tour. Also offers tours in other languages.
Read news in Berlin
[ Book Hostels in Berlin ]
Photo Berlin Errore nella query select top hostels: Table 'c1_news_db.structure' doesn't exist