Berliners know that partying isn’t just for a few rowdy millennials. Everyone from DJs to engineers knows that Berlin’s nightlife scene is not to be trifled with: Saturday night doesn’t end until the Sunday afternoon nap. Want to see what it’s all about? Head to Friedrichshain, tucked into what used to be East Berlin, for under-the-radar kitsch and beats on a Saturday night. The casual punk vibe in the free-thinking, former-Communist neighborhood will draw you in, but the dedication of this eclectic crowd will keep you in the borough until far into the following afternoon for the perfect weekend in Berlin.
Options, options, options
Wander Simon-Dach-Strasse, the core of Friedrichshain, looking for just the right place to have dinner. Between Cafe 100 Wasser’s famous schnitzel and the hefty portions of wienerschnitzel or Black Forest ham and noodles at Kurhaus Korsakow, you’ll be eating like a German in no time. Just in case you’re looking for a different type of comfort, Middle Eastern, Thai, Vietnamese and vegetarian restaurants are also sprinkled throughout the surrounding blocks, too. Consult the menus at the front of the restaurant or in the window before settling on a dinner destination.
Coen fans unite!
Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing
The Dude abides, not just in the 1990s in Los Angeles, but in 21st century Berlin! And so abide bars themed around the Coen Brothers’ movies in Friedrichshain. Have a white Russian surrounded by character artwork at Lebowski, or enjoy a Great White North atmosphere inside Fargo. The cheeky inspiration for each bar ensures patrons will have at least one thing in common: their love of strange-brew comic mysteries and the drinks that support them. Your evening is just beginning.
After getting loosened up, it’s probably past midnight and just about time to stumble through the graffiti-lined walkways of Suicide Circus, an open-air techno club with an underground interior. Dance the night away with any of Berlin’s hottest DJs under the glow of the strobes. Need a little more variety in the beat? Check out what’s going on next door at Cassiopeia, a more all-genre club bridging subcultures and programming different punk, hardcore, reggae and hip hop nights throughout the week. There is no regular admission charge unless it’s listed on the website.
After dancing the night away (it had better be light outside before you decide to quit!), it’s time to refuel. Luckily, Sunday brunch is a Berlin institution, and Friedrichshain’s huge variety of restaurants all offer their own take on the tradition. From bakery items and cold cuts to cheeses, eggs, cold salads, vegetables, hot dishes, yogurts and desserts, enjoying a few hours of brunch is the only way to end your Saturday night once Sunday morning comes around. The excellent Elfida Cafe, at the edge of Boxhaganer Platz, has one of the best spreads in town. Don’t forget the coffee, which Germans serve nice and strong.
You know what they say: one person’s trash is another one’s treasure. And that is certainly true in spades in Friedrichshain’s casual and eclectic flea markets. At the Boxhaganer Platz Sunday market, you can drop your euros on prints and cards by local artists, polyester dresses from the early 1970s, funky t-shirts and even old East German Deutsche Marks. Just a few blocks away, the RAW flea market, also on Sundays, is tucked away in a former train maintenance yard. It’s much more extensive, but offers similar wares, from antiques to vintage furniture, clothes to crafts. You’ll also find food stalls, a beer garden and even a rock climbing wall in case you’ve got some extra energy to burn off.
Chuckle at Laughing Spree Comedy
Laughing Spree Comedy is a weekly comedy show hosted by comedian Chris Doering. He is a stand-up comedian and a former Kabarettist. While enjoying the entertainment, you’ll see buoys and gulls aboard the ship. The performers here are some of Berlin’s finest comedians and other guest comedians from all over the world. Moreover, you’ll be immersed in a friendly atmosphere while enjoying the interactive show. This is a free entry donation show, with a compulsory free shot at the door.
Laughing Spree Comedy
Website: Laughing Spree Comedy
Party at Suicide Circus
Suicide Circus is a midsized techno club with a large central dance floor and an outdoor terrace. It offers party-goers with cutting-edge electronic and techno music by Berlin-based DJs as well as international artists. Aside from the upbeat music and bass that slaps, the night club also has good lighting that complements the party vibe. Different music and themes are featured each day to keep you entertained. Tuesdays are dedicated to Techno music, while Thursdays are live shows, disco, and tech-house. Meanwhile, Fridays are pure techno and chill out. For Saturday, they have techno, deep and tech-house. This club is operated and maintained safely by friendly staff, security teams, and bouncers.
Address: Warschauer Brücke, Revaler Straße 99 Zugang über, 10245 Berlin
Website: Suicide Circus
Opening hours: Tue & Fri - Sun: 11:59pm - 10am; Thu: 11pm - 10am (closed on Mon & Wed)
Watch a magic show at Zauberbar Kurbiskern - Die Kultbar
Zauberbar Kurbiskern is a pleasant cozy magic bar in Friedrichshain. It features funny magic tricks that are performed by a professional magician. Expect an entertaining and friendly service as employees and even its owner can do magic as well. Some of the dishes you can try here are pizza, gnocchi, schnitzel, and burger. Also, cocktails are available. Dishes served here are scrumptious and reasonably priced. Make sure to make a reservation in advance if you are coming as a group as this bar is always fully booked during the evenings, especially on weekends.
Address: Kopernikusstraße 23, 10245 Berlin
Website: Zauberbar Kurbiskern
Opening hours: 4pm - 2am (daily)
Enjoy beer tasting at Hops & Barley
Hops and Barley is a small brewery in Friedrichshain that has been brewing since 2008. They produce traditional beers as well as special beers. To try their specialties, you may visit them in the late afternoon during weekends. Expect to be delighted with their beer offerings as they utilize a combination of innovative and traditional brewing methods. Also, the beers here are not filtered to ensure that they maintain the natural taste. While sipping your beer, you may also watch a soccer game. In addition, if you are interested in brewing your own beer, then you can come when their brewing class is offered.
Hops & Barley
Address: Wühlischstraße 22/23, 10245 Berlin
Website: Hops & Barley
Opening hours: Mon - Thu: 5pm - 1am; Fri: 5pm - 2am; Sat - Sun: 3pm - 2am
Price: From 3.50 EUR (3.90 USD)
The end of the night
A night of eating, drinking, dancing, brunching and shopping is enough to exhaust even the most die-hard Berlin partier. If you need to take a nap, it’s no stress. You’ve done well, and now it’s time to hit the pillow for a few hours before Sunday night’s festivities begin…
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