Why go to Berlin?
Why go to Berlin? The reasons are as multifarious as they are marvellous. Here are a few...
Hang with the hipsters
Berlin is officially one of the coolest and creative cities in Europe, thanks to a combination of relatively relaxed living and relatively cheap rents. The creative industries here are booming and many come just to be a part of them.
Check the history
Berlin's turbulent and fascinating past (see Walking the Berlin Wall) is a boon for serious or just curious history buffs. The 20th century alone saw two world wars plus the Cold War!
It's greener than you think
People think of Berlin as grey and bleak, and it certainly is in places. But it's also a green, family-friendly city, with plenty of parks and fantastic cycling routes for those who like to explore on two wheels (see Freedom is a bicycle in Berlin)
Berlin's notoriously round-the-clock nightlife is some of the best in Europe, if not the world. As resident DJ Ewan Pearson once advised Berliners - "please don't forget to go home!"
Berlin has an enviable art scene; you could spend a week here just visiting galleries (and some people do!). The Museum Island is an entire island dedicated to art and history. You'll need at least a day just for this, and that's without all the other major landmarks (see Berlin: three days, three very different things to do)
Feel the space
With only four million people, Berlin is one of the most spacious and least densely populated cities in Europe. Much more room on trains and trams and less hustle-bustle create a pleasantly spacious and relaxed feel throughout most of the city.
Forget sterile chain cafes, Berlin has some of the best independent cafes in the world to relax in. The brunch scene, a kickback from the nightlife, is truly special.
Eat Your Heart Out
Gone are the days when East Berlin only offered pork knuckle and dumplings. Today the city has a vibrant food scene that runs the gamut from Michelin-starred restaurants to fantastic currywurst stalls and trendy Korean places.
Go beyond the city
It might be landlocked but Berlin is surrounded by lakes and offers easy access to wonderful day trip options like Potsdam, home to the stunning Sansoucci Palace.
A city of surprises
Last but not least, in a world of predictable cities Berlin offers the visitor plenty of surprises. See The bear facts on fascinating Berlin for an idea, but of course you'll just have to come and find them for yourself...