Berlin, the capital of Germany, is a diverse and exciting city, especially for those visitors intending to travel there on a budget. Since it is considered to be one of the most affordable of all the capital cities of Europe due to the various attractive value for money options available, Berlin has become a veritable paradise for the budget conscious backpacker. Most of the major sights like, museums, parks and even operas can be visited by shelling out meagre sums. Here are some top ways to experience the fine art and classical music for free, apart from other things, in order to have a wonderful time in Berlin.
Cultural spots for almost nothing
Berlin has an extremely vibrant arts scene and one can easily walk around and explore the art galleries at Auguststrasse, or even visit the Daimler Contemporary or the Akademie Kunste to admire the exemplary works there by paying nothing. A mere euro 24 pass can get one unlimited access, over a period of three days, to more than fifty museums. On designated days and times, any visitor can view the Knoblauchhaus museum, Ephraim – Pala is architecture or watch a local film at Deutsche Kinemathek for absolutely free.
The food trucks, sell an astonishing variety of cuisine at very economic cost, all over the city. The Markthalle IX organises street food on Thursdays, in addition to a Breakfast Market outlet providing simple breakfast till as late as 6 pm on every third Sunday of the month. Dishes range from Indian snacks to barbecue sandwiches and eggs. The Neue Heimat Village Market offers a wide range of food on every Sunday, accompanied by live music. To savor the original Berlin street food, head to Nur Gemuese to relish the doner kebabs with avocado sauce for less than three euros.
Look for free tours
There are plenty of free tour options available in Berlin which provide a deeper understanding of the history and culture of the city. Every day at 11 am, Alternative Berlin organises free three-hour tours from its office at Alexanderplatz. Though the itineraries keep on changing day by day, these engaging tours take guests to either art related events or even a rave party held during the day. For the art connoisseurs, a small fee of euro 18, can provide access to more than 50 street artists. Berlin Music Tours, conducts three hour city walks for a moderate price of 14 euros, which are a great way to see the city.
Complimentary concert shows.
Every Tuesday,1500 lucky persons can actually view the world-famous Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra without paying anything. To avail of this facility, only thing needed is an early arrival, as space is limited. Other popular events which can be enjoyed for free on certain days ( do your research), are Kreuzberg Bierhaus Urban on Thursday for blues, Kunstfabrik Schlot on Mondays, Thursdays and Sundays for jam sessions. For those under 30 years willing to pay a modest amount of 15 euros, a Classic Card opens up doors to ballets and operas at greatly discounted rates.
Just because you want to be frugal doesn’t mean you have to spend the night on a hard bunk in a dormitory. Just a short distance away from the U-bahn, there are plenty of cheap but stylish hostels to choose from. The Circus Hostel at the Rosenthaler Platz, offers good dorms from 23 euro onwards, which remain highly popular with backpackers. An in house microbrewery is an added incentive. The Grand Hostel Berlin, goes a step ahead by offering its guests options like, complimentary German lessons, free beer tastings, a library, bar with seats overlooking the canal. All these amenities come for 14 euros onwards. The hostel is located in the old Kreuzberg building.
Head for the outdoors
Berlin may not be an ideal holiday destination weather wise, but it still offers plenty of outdoor activities which are at par, if not better, with those in more agreeable climes. A session at the Balinese spa, Vabali, may seem expensive at first look, but if one purchases a 31 euro pass, it opens up a virtual Pandora box for the guest. It then entities the person to experience an entire day of relaxing and treatment in any of the ten different spas which are available. In addition, the guest can have unlimited access to the expansive five acre garden in the complex.
The Metaxa is best for beachside like clubbing or the Standbar Mitte for swing and tango classes along with salsa from just 5 euro onwards. The best way for families to enjoy a Sunday afternoon, is to head to Yaam, where the scene is African culture, Revelers can have African snacks, play beach volleyball or laze around by the riverside.
Party for free
If one is smart and carefully choose the venues beforehand, there is absolutely no need to hang up the dancing shoes for want of money. Joints like the Suss War Gestern, on the bar lined street of Friedrichshain, do not charge any entry fee if you ate seated before 11 pm. Free raves are available at Open Air to Go, where the sound of the DJ’s echoes in from the radio sets brought by the participants. A more quiet evening can be spent at Weinerei, where the guest is permitted to pay whatever is felt right.