Craft, stitchin' and sustainable living

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Brilliant Berlin

One of the many, many cafes in Berlin's Kreuzberg
I'm going to start my travel stories with one of my most favourite cities - Berlin.  After four days in Amsterdam, which I admit was very nice, we flew to Berlin, which is nothing short of awesome.  Berlin is a city that offers something for everyone - choices in food, choices in shopping, choices in art, choices in shows, choices in just about everything, and you can have those choices on a small budget.  Berlin has always been a nucleus for ideas.  It's where an amazing, and still very visible, history meets the young, trendy and interesting.

The East Side Gallery - art on the old Berlin Wall
Berliners know how to refashion on a large scale - they have an old airport that they turned into a public park, a beautiful forest mountain which was actually made from all the WWII rubble from around the city, and parts of the Berlin wall that used to divide the city is now - what else? - an art gallery.

Art at the East Side Gallery
A huge mix of art to be seen
Art students flock to Berlin and it's easy to see why - there is great art everywhere.  Street art, public art, galleries and exhibitions.  There's also cheap rent and one of the best public transport systems I have experienced - and I'm assuming very good art courses at their universities, hence the focus on art in the city.  But that's not all...

Flohmarkt at Mauerpark

Crafty, stitchy and vintage-loving peeps will enjoy areas like Kreuzberg, Friedrichshain, Prenzlauerberg and Hackescher Markt (don't let that limit you though, there is so much of this city to explore).  Above is the Flea Market (Flohmarkt) at Mauerpark, on every Sunday.  It's filled with loads of vintage and second hand clothes and homewares, as well as crafts and lots of yummy snacks.  If you get a chance to go, don't miss the karaoke that is on from 3pm every Sunday.

Also worth visiting is the market at Maybackufer, Neukolln on Saturdays.  It has a great mix of fabrics for 2 or 3 Euros per metre, crafty stalls, and delicatessen goods.

This is just a small snapshot of a truly wonderful city.  You could spend months exploring Berlin and still come across totally new things.  Meanwhile, of course, I was just getting started on the socks that I decided to knit for boyfriend whilst we were away.  As you can see, I had finished the cuff and was working on the leg of the sock... more updates next post!

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