I went to Berlin from 27 February to 01 March 2020 where the perception of coronavirus was rapidly changing from “a minor media hyped inconvenience” to “worldwide pandemic status”. I travelled with my younger sister, Apinya. It was our last trip abroad before the world closed it’s doors to international travel for most of 2020.
Berlin became a city that I truly loved and one of my favourite city breaks of all-time. Having survived through the Second World War and Cold War, Berlin is known as one of the most international and tolerant cities in the world. The atmophere of the city felt like one of my favourite musicals, School of Rock, namely these lyrics:
“Break the rules, ignore the signs
And color way outside the lines
Go off the script, do what you like
There’s been one solution
Since the world began
Don’t just sit and take it
Stick it to the man“
There are food markets with every cuisine you can imagine (Vegan themed of course!), 1UP; a Graffiti Crew who pull off bold stunts for illegal street art and there is even a giant penis sculpture after leftist newspaper Taz won damages against Bild (a newspaper described as notorious for its mix of gossip, inflammatory language, and sensationalism).
I had 3 days in Berlin and this blog post details the top highlights of what we got up to on our last city break before covid19.
1) Have a Currywurst
2) Visit the East End Gallery – Berlin Wall
3) Thursday Night International Food Market
4) Free panoramic city view of Berlin
5) Check-point Charlie
6) Holocaust Memorial
7) Alternative Berlin Walking Tours
Graffiti Walking Tour with Alternative Berlin
I did the “Real Berlin Experience” Tour which was only 16€ for 3 hours
8) YAAM by the River
9) Urban Nation – A free Graffiti Museum
10) Explore Berlin by Foot
Berlin is a very walkable city and we covered most of the main sights on foot. It was a great way to get a real taste of the city (we walked approximately between 7-10 miles on each day).
• We stayed at LebensQuelle Hotel which was situated right in Berlin’s City centre, the hotel was really competitively priced at £55 per night with a full breakfast each morning (It wasn’t fancy but it was a comfy bed with a tasty breakfast).
• I’d highly recommend a meal at Yarok, delicious Syrian food in Berlin with colourful salads and delectable dips.
• I would describe Berlin Story Bunker as one of the most interesting and engaging museums I have ever visited. Definitely include it in a Berlin itinerary if you can.
• Don’t forget to pay a visit to Berlin’s Treehouse. Built by scrap material by Osman Kalin and in defiance to Berlin Wall and war politics surrounding him.
• We flew to Berlin with Ryanair. BEWARE the trains to/from the city. My sister and I thought the train was just a 10 minute ride away from the city, hence leaving it quite late. On Sundays, the trains only ran every 45 mins! We had a tense journey back but made it back just in time :).
• If you have any questions, feel free to comment here and I’ll be happy to help.