5 Unusual Places In Berlin (Where There Aren’t So Many Tourists) – Estimated reading time: 6 minutes
I’ve been living in Berlin for over a decade and whenever I write these kinds of city guides, I often only focus on the most popular and well-known places, like this list of 10 cool things to do in Berlin or this one about the most photographed landmarks in Berlin. This guide is entirely different, as I’m going to take you well outside Berlin’s city center to yes – outside of the Ring where there aren’t so many tourists, if any at all.
This post also serves as a love letter to Berlin’s Eastern district of Lichtenberg (and neighboring Marzahn), my home for the past 5 years or so. During my first years living here, I often found myself always leaving the district for “cooler” parts of the city. The pandemic changed that and since then, I’ve made a concerted effort to get to know my area way more intimately.
5 Unusual Places In Berlin (Where There Aren’t So Many Tourists)
So with that in mind, here are 5 unusual places in Berlin that I recommend checking out:
1) Schlosspark Biesdorf
With 14 hectares of quiet green space, Schlosspark Biesdorf is one of my all time favourite places in Berlin. With a 19th century pink coloured palace, English styled gardens, a pond, a cute café perfect for brunching, and an art museum, it’s well worth the visit. Easily reachable on the S5, the park is less than five minutes from the Biesdorf S-Bahn station. As you walk through the park toward the palace, you’re treated to a pleasant walk through a road flanked with tall coniferous trees on both sides. What’s more, the park is quiet and without tourists. You’ll see locals out walking their dogs, families having a picnic, and others sprawled out on a blanket reading a book.
Address: 12683 Berlin
2) Central Cemetery Friedrichsfelde – “The Socialist Cemetery“
This massive cemetery in Berlin’s Lichtenberg is home to well-known socialists, anti-fascists, and communists, including Rosa Luxemberg, Käthe Kollwitz, as well as the co-founder of the Social Democratic Party (SPD), Wilhelm Liebknecht. A visit to Central Cemetery Friedsrichfelde provides a fascinating glimpse into the city’s history. Signs direct you on self-guided tours of the park, where you can take in a number of memorials like the Monument to the Revolution, as well as the burial places of prominent figures from the worker’s movement. Head to the other end of the cemetery where you can view beautifully ageing ornate headstones, tombs, and even a shrine (Kolumbarium) hidden on a small hill surrounded by trees.
My bonus tip! Head to the community/allotment garden (Kleingarten) located next to the cemetery and visit their restaurant (that they affectionately call the “clubhouse”). Open year-round, they serve up a very delicious and hearty Schnitzel dish. They also offer yummy asparagus dishes during Spargel season.
Address: Gudrunstr. 20, 10365 Berlin
3) Restaurant Yerevan
If you want to feast on authentic and delicious Armenian food, Restaurant Yeravan is the place. This newly opened Armenian restaurant hasn’t been discovered by any of Berlin’s major foodies … yet. Favorable online reviews are showing that this restaurant is only getting more popular, so get there before the hype arrives. The family-owned establishment’s most popular dishes include the xashlama and chinkali, which you can pair with a glass of Armenian wine. This local’s atmosphere is friendly, down to earth, and boisterous. They often play host to big parties, so be ready to smile and have a good time.
Address: Seddiner Str. 8, 10315 Berlin
4) Dong Xuan Center
The Dong Xuan Center is truly a unique place in Berlin. Here you can find all of the Asian food ingredients that you ever need, especially more unique ones that you can’t find at a regular supermarket like Edeka or Rewe. If you’re not interested in food shopping, there are some decent and fairly priced Vietnamese restaurants offering take-away. It’s also pretty entertaining to wander through the halls and peruse the various stores offering everything from knock-off handbags, cheap electronics, and more. I once purchased a lovely sushi dish set from one of the shops. You can even get your haircut or nails done there!
Address: Herzbergstr. 128-139, 10365 Berlin
5) The Rainbow Buildings
Last but not least, is every local photographer’s favourite set of Plattenbaus. These concrete prefabricated buildings became especially popular in former East Germany after WWII. While known for lacking a distinct design, a large number of Plattenbaus in Berlin have seen life breathed into them with brightly colored tiled facades, murals, and other works of art. These two darling white buildings in Berlin’s Fennpfuhl area are connected by a giant rainbow. Head there and take photos that will surely blow up on your Instagram feed.
Address: Roederplatz, 10367
What do you think about these unusual places in Berlin? Have we missed any good ones? Tell us about it in the comments below.
Use this customized Google Map to get an overview of all of the locations mentioned here and how to reach them.
All of these places are fairly close to one another. For example, you can combine a visit to the cemetery with a meal at Restaurant Yerevan. You can also visit the Asian market and walk to the nearby rainbow-themed Plattenbaus to sneak in some photos.
Good To Know About Berlin
1) If you plan on staying in Berlin for a longer vacation, I’d also recommend our guide to day trips from Berlin. If you need help in knowing how to get to some of these German cities, I highly recommend using Rome2Rio, a site that recommends the best way to get from points A – B.
2) For more German travel inspiration, read through some of our most popular posts:
- A Day Trip from Berlin To Görlitz In Photos – Take a day trip from Berlin to Görlitz, one of Germany’s prettiest towns. With a stunning old town & proximity to Poland, it’s worth a visit.
- Come To Germany And Stay At The Circus Hotel Berlin – The centrally located Circus Hotel Berlin has a rooftop terrace, cool restaurant & bar area, and spacious rooms with super comfortable beds
- Who’s Bad? The Michael Jackson Memorial In Munich, Germany – The Michael Jackson Memorial Munich has been long maintained by adoring fans. Some locals would love to see it go away.
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