Photo: iStock / Golero
GERMANY: Is there a better time to enjoy a great time in the German capital than summer? Berlin offers endless opportunities, so you might find yourself wondering what to do first. These 5 tips are definitely a great start to enjoy the summer in the city of Berlin.
1. Cold Drinks and Barbecue Treats at Freischwimmer
Sitting outside, enjoying the sun and letting your gaze wander over the water with a cool drink: The first days of summer attract many Berliners and tourists to the numerous cafés, bars and bistros by the Spree or one of the lakes outside the town. On the Kreuzberg bank of the Flutgraben, a side canal of the Spree, you can find the slightly hidden Freischwimmer with a small boat rental right next to it. On its wooden footbridges and terraces directly on the canal, the hip restaurant offers a varied selection of international and German dishes as well as grilled delicacies and creative summer drinks. If the weather forecast is good, it is highly recommended to make a reservation. And if rain clouds do come up, you can make yourself comfortable on one of the covered terraces or in the fireplace room.
2. Tiergarten Berlin: Picnic, Beer Garden and Concerts
The Tiergarten Park is Berlin's green lung and covers a total area of 210 hectares in the middle of the city centre. The park stretches from the Brandenburg Gate and the government quarter to the Zoological Garden, which is a 40 minutes' walk away, and offers numerous opportunities for walking, picnicking, sunbathing or cycling. Thanks to the surrounding sights as well as other memorials in the park itself, you don’t even miss the cultural aspect on a day at the Tiergarten. In the ‘Café am Neuen See’ in the southern part of the park you can enjoy the summer in a relaxed beer garden atmosphere with a view over the water. There will also be musical entertainment from the end of June until the beginning of September during the concert summer at the tea house of the English Garden. Every Sunday, local and international artists perform on an open-air stage, admission to the concerts is free. For more information visit Café am Neuen See and konzertsommer.jimdo.com (only available in German).
3. Dance into the Summer at Fête de la Musique
Is there a better way to celebrate the beginning of summer than with cheerful music and jolly dancing? Following the French model, Berlin will celebrate the Fête de la Musique on 21 June 2019 Numerous bands, solo artists and even entire orchestras will take part and give free concerts – on one of the approximately 100 indoor and open-air stages, in the middle of the park or on the street. Thanks to a special permit, theoretically anyone who wants to make music in public can do so between 4pm and 10pm. The official concerts will take place all over the city and especially the districts of Prenzlauer Berg, Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg and Mitte will be very busy. The opening concert with Romano and other artists will take place the day before in Berlin Treptow-Köpenick.
4. Cooling with a Scoop of Ice-cream... or two, or three…
Temperatures are rising and so is the appetite for a deliciously refreshing ice cream. Whether experimental, vegan or exotic creations – the German capital offers a large and varied selection of first-class ice cream parlours for every taste. Here are some of our recommendations:
Woop Woop Ice Cream - Rosenthaler Straße 3, 10119 Berlin:
Delicious ice cream with "Woop Woop" effect you can get from Philipp and Boris at Rosenthaler Platz. The business economist and the physicist mix their ingredients with -196° Celsius cold nitrogen, which are then processed into ice cream within just 30 seconds. The result: deliciously creamy and tasty creations such as vanilla popcorn with salty caramel or coconut cinnamon with roasted pineapple. The five varieties are changing monthly, so there are always new flavours to discover!
Waffel oder Becher – z.B. Rosenthaler Str. 40 - 41, 10178 Berlin
Since 2015, the two branches at Hackescher Markt have been producing seasonal ice cream creations and homemade waffles in loving handwork. In addition to more classic milk ice cream varieties such as French chocolate, lemon pie and espresso, the exotic sorbets made from mango, grapefruit or coconut are particularly refreshing on hot summer days.
Paul Möhring "Tradition & Wahnsinn“ – Oranienburger Str. 84, 10178 Berlin
The small pinch of madness is what makes this family-run ice cream parlour something very special. Traditional soft ice cream becomes a real taste experience with unusual toppings such as chilli sauce, sea salt flakes, marshmallows or crumbled pretzel sticks with chocolate. The ice-cream varieties themselves also have a lot to offer. Great hipster potential: the Cold Brew Coffee Sorbet.
Vanille & Marille – z.B. Schlesische Str. 7, 10997 Berlin
The Vanille & Marille stores offer a great selection of delicious creations, including vegan, lactose-free and gluten-free varieties. The ice cream is made solely from natural ingredients, and great importance is attached to regional, organic and Fairtrade products. Another plus point in terms of sustainability: the production is water-saving and runs one hundred percent with green electricity. Unusual varieties such as walnut with fig, apricot lavender or lemon cinnamon can thus be enjoyed with a clear conscience.
5. Summer, Sun and Sightseeing on The Spree
The Spree meanders 44 kilometres through Berlin's city centre, from the Oberbaumbrücke past the East Side Gallery and sights such as the Museum Island and the government quarter to Tiergarten and Bellevue Castle. Perfect to explore the capital from the water and to pass some of the most famous highlights in a very comfortable way. The possibilities to do so are as varied as the city itself, from public tours in open or closed boats, private tours including a skipper as well as picnic and barbecue packages or kayaks for self-driving. The kayak and canoe tours led by Backstagetourism through the small side channels of the Spree or outside the city centre (for example to Charlottenburg Palace or past Treptower Park) offer new perspectives beside the mainstream.