I always knew Berlin was going to be cool. But as my trip loomed closer, I wondered how prominent was the ‘cool’? Would I be able to see what everyone was on about? Was Berlin even actually that cool, or would I be disappointed when all my secret hipster dreams didn’t come true?
Just to say, I then stopped worrying about this closer to the time because y’know, what’s the point? Might as well enjoy any level of cool there is to offer.
Let me break it down:
Street art is something I’m fascinated by. I may not know masses about it (I’m learning!) but I think it’s a significant view into the society it’s in, like a little piece of the city’s soul. It’s always going to be tough in my mind to beat Melbourne street art or even some London street art, but Berlin definitely held its own.
This city has a lot to say and breaks barriers because of its past, and it’s definitely evident in the street art – notably on the remains of the Berlin wall. It’s a beautiful combination of the painful history of the city and the modern perspective and lessons that are taken from it.
Retro photo booths are dotted around Berlin for your random pleasure. A strip of 4 black and white photos with friends, lovers, strangers – whoever – being silly for just 2€ is well worth the visit. Me and my friend Alex did this twice as our first attempt was obvious we were complete newbies at this Berlin phenomenon.
I’m not entirely sure but I think this started in Berlin by a couple of people who bought these discarded retro photo booths, set them up again and let them loose on the streets – and now they’re in Hamburg, Cologne, Leipzig, Vienna, Florence and even London. Check out this website for the locations.
It’s a great momento to take home with you, and I love it because it just encourages having fun for no real reason at any time, any place.
Sadly, I didn’t have the time to get to grips with cafe culture or too much of a night life – though we did go to a very interesting, cramped dive bar in Kreuzberg and had an amusing night. So, seeing as there’s so so so much more to do in Berlin and I will definitely go back, let me know in the comments if you have any suggestions for where I should visit.