I love Berlin. Love it . It’s a city that draws me back time and again. There is something about the place that calls me. I love the sense of creativity, history and optimism there. If ever there was a city to make you feel that whatever happens a new path can be forged, Berlin is it. I’m currently planning my next trip to the German capital, but in the meantime I am indulging my love of the place by sharing five reasons, in no particular order, to love Berlin.
First thing to know and love about Berlin- its massive. And, to keep it interesting, has no one centre. It is a glorious patchwork quilt of a city made up by many neighbourhoods, each with its own feel and draw. Thanks to this, Berlin is a city of endless possibilities. However, you should expect to spend some time getting from A to B. Book a hop on – hop off tour, or better yet, get to grips with the inexpensive public transport system. And enjoy discovering the city…after all, it’s about the journey, right?
Berlin is super affordable. Particularly for a European capital. Not only will you find a range of places to stay and eat that suit all budgets, but you’ll also find a lot of things to do in Berlin that are either free or low-cost. Many of Berlins most famous sights are completely free …the Brandenburg Gate, remnants of the Wall, the Topography of Terror exhibition, most of the parks. Even some museums are free, or free on certain days. Don’t get me wrong, you can do Luxe Berlin and spend a lot of money if you want to…but you absolutely don’t have to in order to have an amazing time here.
Hand in hand with this, comes my third point. Berlin is really three cities in one. hows that for value for money. At Alexanderplatz and you’ll find a glimpse of the East . Head over to Ku-dam to see the decadence of the West. Finish up at Potsdamer Platz to see where Berlin was reborn. Time and progress are softening the dividing lines but the three faces of Berlin are still to be seen.
The Buddy Bears. The cheerful Berlin Mascots will capture your heart. Originally part of an 2001 street art event, the bears are now part of the cities identity and global ambassadors for Berlin. If your travelling with little people, the Buddy bears make an excellent distraction. Let them be chief Bear Spotter and while they are taking in the city looking for bears, you can take in the sights that hold limited interest to a child. Worked for us. NB using this tactic will involve stopping at almost every bear. And possibly being asked to join in hugging them.
And when your all explored out and ready for a break? Berlin is full of places to pause. Green spaces large and small, courtyards, fountains…places to rest your feet, catch your breath and watch the world go by. I love the courtyards of the Hackesche Hof and the gardens set amongst the stunning backdrop that is Museum Island. There is also a lovely shady courtyard behind Nivea Haus that makes a welcome break from the bustle of Unter den Linden. And of course Berlin is abundant in parks and gardens… the Tier garden is probably one of the best known but there are many more to discover. Too many to cover in a blog post, but find a good selection here for browsing.
Is there a city or destination that you feel drawn back to?