Friday, two weeks ago, I went to Berlin, just for the day. I have done a day trip by plane to Copenhagen earlier and it was great, so I thought this was a really good idea. I could do some sightseeing (of abandoned places of course!), watch the fruit trees in bloom, ride my bike in the sun and do lots of shopping. I found cheap flights with Air Berlin, leaving early, home late. Of course, all this was a really good idea. There's one flaw in the previous sentences though. "In the sun". Right. My Friday in Berlin didn't quite turn out as planned, it was raining, and raining even more, I was on my bike still, I mean, I was set for abandoned places, right? So, I was wet, cold, ended up spending too much time in a too big shopping centre to warm up again, went out, didn't enjoy any fruit trees, just focused on getting from place to place without dying lol. It sound not-so-fab, but it was still ok. I recommend the day trips regardless. It's kind of a lottery, but I still got to enjoy Berlin. Except for abandoned places, I almost took no photos at all though. The photos of my favourite stores I was planning to shoot, I had to steal off the internet. Sorry! Still, here's my best shopping tips:
Luciban Pepateri Rosa-Luxemburg-Straße 41
Lovely shop! Just lovely! Stationary, fountain pens, other pens, envelopes, postcards+++
Schöne Schreibwaren Niederbarnstraße 6
Stationary and some paper, and also beautiful leather products, prints and artwork
Both these places have the most friendly staff. There's one more paper store in Prenzlauer Berg, and it's equally pretty, but I couldn't locate now, rain.... But next time!
Frau Tulpe Veteranenstraße 19
My favourite fabric store, ever! So inspiring, tons of fabrics and everything else you need for sewing. Great staff, speaks English, helps you out all the time, love this place! Close to both a Photobooth and Schöne Schreibwaren.
Lieblingsplatz Kollwitzstraße 22
Sweet little shop/workshop, with stuffed animals of their own design and lots of one-of-a-kind items for children and playful grow ups.
Other top ten places:
Ok, I didn't get to do all I wanted to do. But I passed by one of my favourite cinemas Babylon (Rosa-Luxemburg-Straße 30) and food shopped at Bio Markt, so tasty eco food, their fruit and vegetable department is to die for! (Kollwitzstraße 17). My preferred place to rent a bike is St.Christophers inn Hostel. Also my preferred place to stay, you can even rent your own apartment so cheap. (Rosa-Luxemburg-Straße 41). Last but not least, I went for a swim. I've really been wanting to visit Stadtbad Mitte for so long (the yellow building, down, left). Build in 1927-30 by architects Carlo Jelkman, Rudolf Gleye and Heinrich Tessenow it's a real gem for a modernist junkie like myself. The pool is 50m and the glass roof and the large windows makes swimming really special. I loved it! Bring a 1€ coin for the locker. A swim also felt really good after biking around in the rain wearing wet clothes for ages....
(By the way, did I mention Prenzlauer Berg is my favourite part of the city....)
So, what about abandoned places? I saw two, one where I've been before and one new. I will devote a special post to them later, but here's two photos, one from Universität Berlin's former institute of anatomy and one from Ballhaus Grünau. If you feel this is really intriguing, check out this blog: www.abandonedberlin.com.
Finally some photos I took myself!
I had lots of plans for the day that didn't happen, but here's two top tips from one of the best cities in the world:
Dussman Friedrichstraße 90
THE bookstore! Also music, movies etc
Flohmarkt am Arkonaplatz
If you're in Berlin on a Sunday, don't miss this flea market. Forget about Flohmarkt am Mauerpark, too big, too noisy, too much crap. Go to Arkonaplatz instead. Lots of 50-60ies fun, a lot more cozy, not expensive at all.
And so, what about the photo booths? It's embarrassing. I didn't visit one this time, even if there's one right outside Frau Tulpe. It just didn't happen. But they're all over Berlin. www.photoautomat.de will tell you where. Enjoy! In late June, I'm off to Stockholm. Tove's city guide coming up!