Berlin

Brandenburg Gate

Berlin is one of the coolest cities you’ll visit. With such a recent, tumultuous history, the city is vibrant in culture, street art, and realness unlike anywhere else. With the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the city began to rebuild itself, but many of the distinctions between East and West Berlin are still apparent. With the famous East Side Gallery and street art, the underground music and party scene, and the Holocaust Memorial recently opened; Berlin is rich in history and revolution.

Quick Facts

Country | Germany
Language | German & English
Location | North East Germany
Closest Airport | TXL (9.2 km)
Currency | Euro
Days Needed | 3-4
Best Time to Visit | April-October

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Getting There

From Berlin Tegel Airport: Bus connections right from the airport into the city centre (every 5 minutes) and takes about 15-20 minutes.

From Schönefeld Airport: Directly connected to the regional and S-Bahn rail. You can take the S-Bahn into the city (departs every 10 minutes). The Regional Railway Airport Express (runs twice every hour) will take you directly to Berlin Hauptbahnhof (the main station) and takes about 30 minutes.

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Stay

We stayed at an Airbnb in Kreuzburg, one the best-known areas in Berlin. Easily walkable to the club district and with close connection to the S or U-Bahn. There are also tons of hostels within the city if you’re looking to meet people and experience a more relaxed, backpacker vibe.

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Sights

East Side Gallery

Not needing an introduction, the famous East Side Gallery is 1316 metres long, and is an international memorial for freedom.

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Holocaust Memorial

Designed by Peter Eisenman and Buro Happold, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe is not one to be missed. With an abstract design, it speaks volumes and can be interpreted in many moving ways.

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Walking Tour

I highly recommend doing a walking tour(s) when in Berlin. Beginning with the Holocaust and working your way up to present day, it’s the best way to get an overview of the city’s history, as well as see the sites. Sandeman Tours is highly recommended. Depending on the tour you choose, you’ll see sites such as the Brandenburg Gate, Holocaust Memorial, Checkpoint Charlie, The Berlin Wall, the Opera, etc. The Alternative Walking Tour gives you the background on the squatters and the art scene.

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YAAM Berlin

If you’d like to relax a little bit, spending some time at YAAM is ideal. A chill spot next to the river, you’ll walk into a sandy area resembling a Caribbean island. With a bar fully stocked and tables and recliners to relax on, YAAM is a great way to spend an idle afternoon.

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Party

Pub Crawl

The best way to meet new people and check out Berlin’s pubs and bars, is a pub crawl. You can choose from the Original Pub Crawl or an alternative one (or both), and drink your way around the city.

Clubs

If you’re a party person, it would be sacrilegious to come to Berlin and not check out their famous clubs. Deep house and techno are the soul of the city and you can spend all day, night or weekend in their warehouses of sound. Berghain is said to be the Church of Techno and the most exclusive club in the world to get into. Tresor is the most respected and first techno club of the city, one that gave birth to techno and Berghain.  Check out this list on Berlin’s top clubs and their door policies.

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Eat & Drink

Neni

A garden high in the sky, Neni is Berlin’s place to go for Mediterranean/Middle Eastern fare. A delicious meal and beautiful surroundings, you can’t ask for better.

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House of Small Wonders

As cute as the name suggests, House of Small Wonders is a cozy spot, perfect for a casual brunch (and yes, definitely Instagrammable). They only take cash though, so come prepared.

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Silo Coffee

Totally hipster with a raw, wooden interior, Silo is a great little cafe for a light brunch, coffee, or to just hang out.

Burgermeister

There’s nothing quite like sitting under a rail station and having a burger. Burgermeister is a fun, casual take out spot in Kreuzburg to enjoy a burger and fries. Sit at the communal tables or take yours to go. And yes, they have a veggie option!

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Additional

Kebab Shops | any in the city

Berlin is truly unlike anywhere else, and it’s best to visit when you’re young and looking for culture mixed with partying and relaxing.

Check out my travel post for more photos.

xx

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Bath

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Quite possibly one of the most romantic and picturesque cities you’ll visit. Established as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987, the history of Bath extends back to the time of the Romans. During their stay in the British Isles, the Romans established Bath in Somerset, England as their spa and rejuvenation place,  centered on the natural thermal hot springs found here. Popularized by Jane Austen, the 19th century writer spent time here, and based many of her plots in this Georgian city in the hills.

Quick Facts

Country | United Kingdom
Language | English
Location | 2 hours (185 km) from London
Closest Airport | BRS (32 km)
Currency |  GBP
Days Needed | 2-4
Best Time to Visit | May-September

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Getting There

From Gatwick Airport: Take the Gatwick Express (every 15 minutes) to Victoria Underground Station (this will take about 30 minutes), and then from Victoria Station take the tube (every 5 minutes) to Paddington Station (this will take about 15 minutes). Buy your ticket to Bath Spa (every 30 minutes). It is cheaper to buy your tickets to Bath in advance. Journey to Bath from Paddington Station is about 1 1/2 hours.

From Heathrow Airport: Take the tube (every 5 minutes) to Paddington Station (this will take about 15 minutes) . Once at Paddington, you can buy your ticket to Bath Spa (every 30 minutes). Journey to Bath from Paddington Station is about 1 1/2 hours.

From Bristol Airport: Take the Airport Flyer Express to Bristol Temple Meads Train Station (this will take about 30 minutes). From here, board a train to Bath Spa (every 30 minutes). Journey to Bath from Bristol Temple Meads Train Station is about 17 minutes.

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Stay

We stayed at a charming, family run B&B called Pulteney House, run by Steve who makes a great English breakfast. Walkable to the city center and on a nice, quiet street.

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Sights

Roman Baths

Made famous for its thermal spas, a visit to Bath isn’t complete with a tour of the Roman Baths located in the city center.

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Bath Abbey

The Abbey Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, commonly referred to as the Bath Abbey is located just beside the Roman Baths and worth a visit. Founded in the 7th century, rebuilt in the 12th and 16th centuries and restored in the 1860s, the Abbey tour can be completed after a visit to the Baths.

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The Circus & Royal Crescent

For history lovers and cultural enthusiasts, the Circus and Royal Crescent are classic Georgian architecture. Having been completed between 1754 and 1767, the Circus was a popular stay for many of Jane Austen’s characters, with residents still living there today.

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Shop

Meticulous Ink

As an avid paper enthusiast (hello Owl and Oak), a stop at Meticulous Ink was a must. A gorgeous paperie with beautiful letterpress and gold foil designs, this print shop had me at its aqua ampersand.

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Topping and Company

With Belle’s bookshop in mind, a visit to Topping and Company didn’t disappoint. Complete with rolling library ladders and hot tea, we each picked up a book for our trip here.

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Eat & Drink

Bertinet Bakery

It was hard to keep me away from this tiny yet delicious bakery. With authentic pain au chocolat and quiche, it’s a great place to pick up a snack or light lunch while ambling the cobblestone streets.

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The Huntsman

A relaxed yet old English pub in the middle of the city, the Huntsman is perfect for an evening drink. A great selection of beers and a cool vibe, either on the patio or in their two story building, it makes for a perfect spot to spend the night.

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Colonna & Hunter

Winning coffee shop, Colonna & Hunter is a great, airy spot to grab a coffee with friends. Camp out here with your laptop to get some work done with their free WiFi, or stop in for a taste of their specialty beers.

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Additional

Tagine Zhor | Moroccan Food
The Pig & Fiddle | Pub

I’d highly recommend a visit to Bath when in the UK. Realign your energies, take some quiet time to reflect and appreciate beauty in new places, and indulge yourself!

Check out my travel post for more photos.

xx

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