Berlin: Artsy edgy and totally effervescent
Berlin, Germany's capital, best known for the fall of the Berlin Wall is also home to renowned opera houses, museums and art galleries. This city is hip, with a choice of restaurants, bars and clubs for evening entertainment and historic sites to satisfy the sightseer in you.
When to travel
There is never a bad time to visit Berlin. If the cold weather is less than appealing travel in the summertime as winters are extremely cold. Fashion Week is held in January and July and the Berlinale International Film Festival commences in February. On May 1st, International Worker's Day is celebrated in Kreuzberg and locals welcome Summer Solstice with the Fete de la Musique festival on June 21st.
Useful tips to consider before travelling
The roads in Berlin are bike friendly with cycle paths and flat terrains. The numerous cycle hire shops make renting a bike easy and affordable. Accommodation, alcoholic beverages and food items are cheaper in Berlin in comparison to London. Restaurants and stores don't often accept credit card payments, so carry cash with you. Berlin is 1 hour ahead of London.
Local information and transportation
Catch a taxi, the TXL bus to Alexanderplatz, the X9 or the 109 to Zoologischer Garten from Tegel Airport to the city. Alternatively, take the 128 bus to Osloer Straße and change for U-Bahn. Journeys take around 30 minutes and buses are located at terminals A and B. Tickets start from around 2.70 Euros. Catch the S-Bahn S9, or the S45 trains from Schönefeld Airport to Ostkreuz then change. The X7 and the 171 buses also travel to Rudow then take the U-Bahn. Prices start from 3.30 Euros, and the journey takes around 30 minutes. Hostels cost around 10 Euros a night, and hotels start from around 35 Euros upwards. Popular hotels are located in Friedrichstraße, Zoologischer Garten and Alexanderplatz. The Berlin WelcomeCard tourist card gives you 50% discount for entrance fees to museums and other attractions, and access to public transportation including trams and boats. Tickets purchased from the underground and S-Bahn must be validated before travelling. Berlin's taxis are cheaper than London cabs and can be flagged down for "Kurzstrecke", aka short distance journey's, covering 2 km distances.