It’s cold and grey outside – we’ve got winter in Berlin! There are definitely enough reasons why one should rather visit Berlin in summer. However, there are also some things that make the capital city especially beautiful in winter time. First of all, Berlin isn’t overcrowded, secondly, the queues in front of clubs are much shorter and, thirdly, there sometimes is a very special, mystic atmosphere in the city. Imagine, you are sitting in our hostel lobby asking yourself what to do on a cold winter’s day. You partied hard enough, you’ve seen the museums and now you want to discover the “real” Berlin during daytime. We’ll tell you what to do on such a winter day in Berlin – here comes our top five-list of winter activities in Berlin!
Number 1: Winter walk
Get some fresh air even though it’s freezing outside!
If you’re leaving the busy city center and go into nature, you can go on very idyllic winter walks in Berlin. Isn’t a walk outside in the clear winter’s air anyways the best way to recover from a hangover after a crazy party night? Our tip: walk along the Spree River (direction South-East) until you reach the bridge “Elsenbrücke” while gazing at the modern architecture and street art; then walk over the bridge towards Treptower Park. In this park, you walk further along the Spree River until you get to the island “Insel der Jugend” which is a small idyll in midst the big city. Walk over the romantic bridge onto the island. If you’re lucky, there will be a small campfire and some Bread on a Stick for you :). The walk will take you about one hour and if you’re too tired afterwards, you can go back by public transport within 20 minutes. Just take a bus from the stop “Alt-Treptow” to the stop “Schlesisches Tor” and from there it’s just one stop with the U-Bahn to “Warschauer Straße”.
Number 2: German food
Eating hearty German food is the best method to get warm.
Actually, one can say that German food is better suited for winter months than for summer months. In Berlin’s hot summer, you won’t really feel like having a rich pork roast or a big portion of spaetzle right? Traditional German food is solid and rich and warms you up from inside. So, let’s get it going! After your winter walk, why not stop for a bite to eat in a German restaurant? We recommend the restaurant Keule on Simon-Dach-Straße – here, you get really good German food like at grannies.
Number 3: Ice-skating
Jump on ice!
Even exercising in the cold makes you warm. One of the coolest winter sports is ice skating because you can do that together with your friends and it’s a lot of fun. In Berlin, there are several skating rinks – for instance, the brand-new indoor ice rink in Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf or the small but nice outdoor ice rank on Tempelhofer field in Neukölln. Please note: if you get to the ice rank only by midday/afternoon, it’s going to be cramped; so make sure you get there quite early!
Number 4: Sledding
One is never too old to behave like a child.
Put on some warm and waterproof clothes, get yourself a sledge (a thick bin bag or “snow glider” will also work) and then off to the toboggan run! Of course, you first need snow for doing that. But if we look at Berlin’s weather at the end of January, it is very likely that it’s going to snow again during the next months. You can go sledding for instance in Volkspark Friedrichshain or in Viktoriapark in Kreuzberg. To get to Volkspark Friedrichshain, just take the tram M10 (for ca. 10 minutes) until the stop “Paul-Heyse-Straße”. If you want to go to Viktoriapark, it’s best to take the Underground to “Platz der Luftbrücke“, changing trains at the stop “Hallesches Tor”. There, you find the hill “kreuzberg” which also gave name to the alternative district of Kreuzberg.
Number 5: Cinema
Make yourself comfy and watch a movie.
As it’s getting dark early in the day at the moment, one has a good excuse to get comfortable in a cinema chair, eat popcorn and watch a good movie. Especially in February, you should jump at the opportunity and get tickets for one of the movies of Berlinale. During this international film festival, it is very likely that you spot a Hollywood celebrity or watch a completely crazy, experimental movie. Besides Berlinale, Berlin generally offers a wide choice of cinemas – you’ll find everything ranging from huge tourist favorites like Cinestar to small, independent cinemas like Babylon Kino on the Dresdner Straße in Kreuzberg. At Alexanderplatz there is a Cinestar which you easily reach by S-Bahn and the Babylon Kino is close to the U-Bahn stop “Kottbusser Tor”, about 10 minutes by Underground from our hostel.
We hope that we convinced you of the fact that Berlin is always worth a visit – even in winter time.
See you soon,
Your Industriepalast team
is Berliner by choice and a passionate backpacker himself. As a receptionist he knows the real hostel life; as a blogger he's been writing for Industriepalast Hostel's Berlin blog since 2014.