Fall is here! And there is no reason to mourn after the summer as the next few months are packed with exciting events. Film fests, magical festivals of lights, or christmas markets – these events are a turn-up for the books:
German Unity Day (2 – 4 October)
Every year on the 3rd of October Germany celebrates the reunification of 1990. At the centre of attention will naturally be Brandenburg Gate, where a grand festival takes place all over the weekend. There will be a fair, shows, and concerts, and as the German unity turns 25 this year, the celebrations are very likely to be even bigger than usual – and you can be right in the middle of it.
Festival of Lights: Berlin leuchtet (2 – 18 October)
Berlin leuchtet, the city’s very original Festival of Lights, takes place every year, but it has never been that big before: For two weeks, no less than 500 buildings all over the capital turn at nightfall into colorfully illuminated artworks of light. Some artists will shine their light onto regular structures, other focus on the famous landmarks of Berlin. Even some train stations will be illuminated artfully. Summer might be over, but the best time for a nightly stroll is when the city is an ocean of lights in october – Berlin glows.
Refugees Welcome: solidarity concert (4 October)
All over the planet, people are fleeing war, oppression, natural disasters, or poverty. The year 2015 will go down in history as the year when Europe and the Middle East were facing huge waves of refugees. Germany, as one of the richest nations, must prove now that people here are willing to share, welcome, and host others in need. At the heart of the nation, on the plaza at Reichstag Building, a big solidarity concert will thus take place on the 4th of October. Popular German musicians like Udo Lindenberg, Herbert Grönemeyer, Xavier Naidoo, and Sido are going to perform and send out a clear message: Refugees Welcome!
Erotic Trade Show Venus (15 – 18 October)
Ok, let’s be honest – this is not exactly the kind of event you would take your in-laws to. But 30,000 visitors every year make Venus one of the biggest and most influential erotic trade shows in the world and prove, that Erotism should not be a taboo issue anymore. There are many different fields, such as sex toys, fashion, films, and online services, and the newest trends will be revealed here. Also, the highly coveted “Venus Awards” are presented here.
JazzFest Berlin (5 – 8 November)
Berlin is not exactly what you would call a jazz hotspot. Normally – Because once a year there are smooth melodies and wild rhythms in the air: JazzFest Berlin puts the regular jazz bars back on the map and turns other venues into such. Last year the festival turned 50, so 2015 is the beginning of a new half-century. The line-up is quite promising and as the festival is under new management we can well expect anything but ordinary.
Christmas Markets (December)
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, or at least it’s the mulled wine time of the year. During the first four December weeks, There are more than just a handful of christmas markets in Berlin. Some are cozy, some are kitchy, some feel like Santa’s personal Oktoberfest. Whichever you prefer, you will find handicrafts, christmas presents, and – naturally – food en masse. If you want to really understand the German concept of Gemütlichkeit, sharing a mulled wine with friends and strangers under the winter sky is a good start.
New Year’s Eve in Berlin (31 December)
There is only one spot for Europe’s biggest New Year’s Eve party: At Brandenburg Gate, one Million visitors count the last seconds before Midnight together and bid farewell to the old year spectacularly. Being there, taking part, that is what counts and it sure is an experience you will never forget. All hotels in Berlin are usually booked out weeks ahead, so it’s best to reserve your bed at Industriepalast Hostel right now.
Autumn Film Festivals
When the warm days are past, it’s finally time to go to the movies again. What a lucky “coincidence”, that some of the greatest small film festivals are just around the corner. First in line is the Spanish Filmfest Berlin (6 – 10 October) which in the last two years has become an important ambassador for the Spanish film industry. Prix Europa (17 – 23 October) is the European festival for broadcasting programs, so it is all about television, internet, and radio. The Russian Film Week (26 November – 3 December) at the Russian House takes place at the same time as the great independent film festival Around the World in 14 Films (27 November – 6 December), so film freaks are faced with the difficult decision of where to munch away on their popcorn.
No doubt, the live music schedule for the last three months of the year is nothing to sneeze at. The classics are the highlights of course: Crosby, Stills & Nash (7 October), Bob Dylan (13 & 14 October), Randy Newman (1 November), Deep Purple (24 November), and Motörhead (27 November). Those who dig charts music can look forward to German oldie Nena (6 November) and all-time favorite Madonna (11 November). A bit more up to date are Glen Hansard (8 October), Tocotronic (17 October), Bushido (28 October), Of Monsters and Men (2 November), José Gonzalez (3 November), The Prodigy (7 November), Alt-J (21 November), K.I.Z. (22 November & 18 December), Sido (7 December), Bilderbuch (10 December), and Florence & the Machine (13 December).
Have a laid-back fall,
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.