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First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

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First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

I am planning on travelling to Berlin with a friend in May for 5 nights/4 days and I am unsure of what area would be best for us to stay in and what are the must-do things. We are both 21 and very interested in contemporary art and learning a little about the history of Berlin/WW2 (but not be overloaded by it). We are doing the trip on a budget and plan to stay in a hostel or cheap hotel in what would preferably be a lively area where we could eat and drink cheaply on an evening. We don't mind doing some walking, so long as it's not miles and miles, so we would like to stay quite central if possible. I should also add I am a keen photographer and would love to be able to wander around some interesting places to capture my imagination. Could anybody please suggest which neighborhood/area would be best suited for us? And also which things we should definitely make time to see/do? Thanks!

Edited: 01 February 2012, 18:19
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1. Re: First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

There are a number of areas suitable for you:

Mitte is one, Friedrichshain and Prenzlauer Berg also.

Hip but less mainstream, very lively, multi cultural and colouful is also Kreuzberg near Oberbaumbrücke.

Considering your aims I'd opt for the later area.

You have excellent public transport options from there.

It's close to the water (boat trip!) and parks, you can walk along remaiins from the Berlin Wall on Eastside Gallery (great photography!) and nearby are some really unusual (inexpensive) bars and pubs. At the border to Treptow is also one of the last watch towers from GDR times.

Don't forget your swimming suits for one of the main attractions in the event area of "Arena", the bathing ship with beach bar floating in the river: arena-berlin.de/badeschiff_winter_2011-2012.…

Must sees (not just for a photographer):

Neues Museum on Museums Island http://www.neues-museum.de/?lang=en

Jewish Museum www.jmberlin.de/main/EN/homepage-EN.php

Topography des Terrors topographie.de/en/topography-of-terror/nc/1/

Sony Center and Filmmuseum http://www.deutsche-kinemathek.de/

Reichstag (also great at night) http://www.bundestag.de/htdocs_e/index.html

(when weather is good, have a drink in deck chairs at the water front opposite the Hauptbahnhof

take the Berlin Wall tour

Hackesche Höfe http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hackesche_Höfe

and try to do a boat trip through the city centre.

and and... check out this website: www.berlin.de/international/index.en.php

Edited: 28 February 2012, 13:46
Tel Aviv, Israel
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2. Re: First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

Hi there all the above just about covers what else I could say however I would suggest a day trip to Potsdam. Its stunning and if you are keen on photography even the surrounding town is stunning with cute cobble stoned streets. One of my favourite places in Berlin was Alexander platz. It used to be the hub of the former east germany and there are still remnants of its communist past including some buildings, the tv tower and even a statue of Marx and engels. From here you can head for the unter den linden street which is one of berlins main streets where there are some amazing buildings. You will pass th berlin cathedral and on alexander plats you will find the german and french churches and the german museum. The whole street has a sort of age goneny feel to it. At the end of the street you will come to the brandenberg gate which is one of the few structures in berlin that remained standing after the second world war. From here you are close tothe riechstag and to the Tiergarten which is a large urban park. Plenty of photo ops.

have a great trip



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3. Re: First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

Hi There,

I would like to add if you want WWII history, I strongly suggest the Berlin Underworld tours! My husband and I went on the flack tower tour, it was fantastic! They also have a bunker tour as well. It was one of the highligts of our trip for my husband.


4. Re: First trip to Berlin- where to stay? what to do?

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