Once its own borough, the district of Prenzlauer Berg now belongs to Pankow and is located right next to Mitte and Friendrichshain. Characterized by the five-story ‘Althaus’ with a closed courtyard in the back the typical Prenzlauer Berg block is very large. The district is dominated by broad tree-lined streets with colorful boutiques, restaurants and cosy cafes attracting a mix of stay-home moms and dads, freelancers and university students alike. Prenzlauer Berg can’t deny its creative and alternatively individual vibe with parks being taken over by children’s birthday parties clearly marked by burlaps and balloons under the tree, a broad range of organic food shops, hip new juice shops and a yoga studio on almost every corner. Learn more about this charming neighborhood’s highlights with our best-of guide to Prenzlauer Berg after the jump.
There is no shortage of great options in Prenzlauer Berg with its diverse and ever changing restaurant and cafe landscape.
Eat & Drink
Imagine a warm and welcoming hut in the alps. In the middle of Prenzlauer Berg. And this is what Meierei is all about. Modern alpine interior with muesli, Gulasch, hearty breads and more on the menu. For breakfast how about starting the day with rice pudding and rhubarb compote, organic scrambled egg with cheese, fresh butter and crusty bread or a flaky croissant with apricot jam? If this sounds good to you, head over to Kollwitzstrasse 42, 10405 Berlin.
With not more than 20 seats, this is a small fish restaurant Fischfabrik with daily specials hand written on the chalk board. Choose your fish for a classic fish & chips or if you’re more adventurous you can try their octopus. The salmon salad is filling and the fish is cooked to perfection. Better to come here for lunch than dinner to guarantee a big selection of fish options. Danziger Strasse 24, 10435 Berlin.
Coffee & Cake
Once a bakery in East Berlin, this space has since been used by bars until Cafe Krone moved in. With options to sit outdoors or indoors with a view onto the quiet backyard (Hinterhof), you can choose from the plush sofas or beautiful antique tables enjoying their homemade cakes and quality coffee. Oderberger Straße 38.
photo: Cafe Krone
The gastronomic spectrum of Prenzlauer Berg could not be more diverse. But what it could also be described at is: down-to-earth. You’ll find pretty much everything from comfort food like pizzas and burgers, various Asian treats, rustic German options and also a lot of healthy and vegan places. To give you a bit of a rundown and cover as many tastes as possible: If you like Vietnamese food you should pay Anjoy on Rykestraße a visit and try their flying noodles. Vegans will find a piece of heaven at Lucky Leek. For pizza you are in excellent hands at Zia Maria on Winsstraße. If you like it French you should book a table at Le Valseuses on Eberswalder Straße. For a yummy Hummus with Shakshuka our favorite of the neighborhood is Zula on Husemannstraße.
Right across the street from the fairytale fountain at the Volkspark Friedrichshain the Fairytale Bar technically still falls into Prenzlauer Berg. As the name suggests you’ll be whisked away into the beautiful and crazy fairy tale world of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. This concept bar combines inventive drinks by cocktail guru Mike Meinke with attention to detail in interior and operations. Expect face-painted and costumed staff and a boozy head.
Other great bars in the district are BRYK at Rykestraße 18 and Schwarzsauer at Kastanienallee 13.
Photo: Fairytale Bar
Founded by lawyer and cultural event organizer Jan-Philipp Sexauer, the warehouse turned art gallery offers a large exhibition space for changing contemporary art pieces. Not your usual all-white-washed museum, this gallery brings personality with vintage furniture, trinkets,and big comfy leather sofas. After a summer break the gallery is reopening on September 11 bringing back Jay Gard with a new exhibition titled ‘Wrong History’. Streustraße 90, 13086 Berlin Pankow.
photo: Sexauer Galerie
One of the things that are so typical for Berlin is its graffiti. Embodying Martin Luther’s apple tree quote “If I Knew The World Ended Tomorrow, I would Plant An Apple Tree Today” in 20 different languages this mural by the German street art duo Herakut speaks of hope and creating something positive in our world. Their work can be seen in cities around the world, from Toronto to Kathmandu, from San Francisco to Melbourne. And now there’s also this new mural in Berlin. Greifswalder Str. 87.
photo: Freie Internationale Tankstelle
In Pankow right at the border to Prenzlauer Berg this is worth the little trip over the ‘border’. Now a protected site the abandoned brewery is used for festivals, concerts and exhibitions and you can even find a pizza place and a beer garden at the premises. This coming weekend the Brauerei space will be buzzing with up and coming designers, food and music. Expect oriental jazz bands and fresh Arabic Israeli food to accompany a fashion show at 20h on Saturday, August 29 for Kanaan’s kick-off event. Berliner Strasse 80-82, 13189 Berlin.
photo: Patrique El Mariachi
Life is taken slow in Prenzlauer Berg and the best way to get to know this Kietz is to fit right into the flow and take it easy.
Little known to most Berliners Leisepark is opposite the big Volkspark Friedrichshain. A former cemetery some of the gravestones are still kept and add to the unique charm of this beautiful park. You won’t find manicured flower beds and lawns but instead a little neighborhood park with overgrown ruins and wild flowers. This park is also particularly kid friendly with some gaming offerings. Heinrich-Roller-Straße 21.
Volkspark Prenzlauer Berg
Almost 30 hectar large, the Volkspark Prenzlauer Berg is a relatively new park. After being used for dumping rubble after the war trees were planted and the area started to be revitalised in 1967. Today the park is a little green oasis with jogging paths, a playground for kids and plenty of opportunity to just chill on large and green lawn. Schneeglöckchenstraße, 10407 Berlin
photo: Rowena Waack
Built in 1877 the Wasserturm in Prenzlauer Berg is the oldest water tower in Berlin. Once used to supply the workers apartments with water, it hasn’t been used since 1952 and in the late 90s the workers apartments have been turned into swanky apartments. The tower is surrounded by a quaint park and despite its grim history (it once housed the first concentration camp) today this is a place of serenity and quiet in the middle of a friendly neighbourhood filled with restaurants, cafes and young families inviting you to just stop for a moment and watch life pass you by. Knaackstraße 22, 10405 Berlin
Once right along the border between East and West Berlin, there is no shortage of live history in this Kietz.
Ernst Thälmann Monument
Named after a former communist party leader, this monument was set on a former plant building site for East Berlin’s 750th anniversary in 1986 and today is one of the few remaining monuments of the former DDR in Berlin. After the reunification it was decided to remove and store the bronze propaganda plaques instead of tearing down the statue. Often target for vandalism and graffiti the statue today made it onto the list of protected monuments and is sought after by the city. Greifswalder Strasse corner Danziger Strasse
A free exhibition portraits everyday life in the DDR – from a grocery store to furniture, sample menus and the ‘Trabbi’. Added bonus: If you go on a Saturday you’ll also find a fine outdoor street food market for some nibbles on the road. Knaackstraße 97, Gebäude 6.2, 10435 Berlin.
Berlin Wall at Mauerpark
At the Western border of Prenzlauer Berg this now is a popular park for flea markets and outdoor performers on weekends. You’ll still be able to find a few graffiti sprayed remnants of the wall here. Now a training wall for graffiti artists, walk up to see the wall and using one of the few swings get a great view over the city. Eberswalder Straße/Schwedter Straße, 10437 Berlin
So much for our recommendations. Of course there are many more amazing things to discover in Prenzlauer Berg. If you have any favorites that are missing here that you would like to share, feel free to use the comments below.