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5 things to do in Berlin on a budget

5 things to do in Berlin on a budget

Berlin is bursting with creativity, history, and edginess, making it a captivating city to discover. It’s constantly changing and evolving as waves of migration change the makeup of the city. In 2003, then Mayor of Berlin Klaus Wowereit, famously declared Berlin was “poor but sexy”, and it’s hard to come up with a better description.

Unsurprisingly, Berlin is a popular choice for students and tourists alike. So if you’re planning a visit to Europe’s capital of cool, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how affordable it can be, if you know where to go. Here are our picks of the best things to do in Berlin on a budget.

1. Take an e-scooter tour

As with most European cities, Berlin is littered with e-scooters. So make a day of it, and feel the wind in your hair as you scoot your way around Berlin. Take the opportunity to visit the city’s main sights such as the East Side Gallery on the Berlin Wall, Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, and the Reichstag.

Voi offers day passes for around €7 (up to 120 minutes), so you can scoot to each site, park up, and then grab a new one without paying unlocking fees.

2. Spend your Sundays at Mauerpark

Mauerpark is a buzzing urban park in the Prenzlauer Berg district. Its name derives from the fact that it formed part of the Berlin Wall. While you can visit anytime for a picnic or people-watching, it really comes alive on Sundays with a flea market and outdoor karaoke.

The Mauerpark flea market has hundreds of stalls selling vintage items and second-hand goods from 7am-5pm every Sunday. If you’re in Berlin for a while, this is also a great place to pick up an old bike for a bargain and get involved with the city's bike-friendly culture.

After some shopping, head over to the bear pit for the famous outdoor karaoke. Brave souls take to the stage in this large amphitheater and sing their hearts out from around 3pm every Sunday. It’s free to watch (and join in).

3. Eat for cheap

Berlin is an incredible foodie city. While there are some fine-dining establishments, at the other end of the spectrum you will be spoilt for choice. With a huge Turkish population and home to the Doner, you can’t go far without coming across a kebab shop. But there are plenty of other delicious cheap eats to try:

  • Thai park: several Thai vendors sell delicious and cheap meals at this park, bring your own picnic blanket

  • Currywurst and fries at Wurstpate

  • Flavoursome Vietnamese meals at Hamy Cafe

  • A selection of filling wraps for just €2 at Libanon Falafel in Neükolln

  • Try one of the cheap cult burgers at Burgermeister

  • The price-to-performance ratio delivers at Pizza Dach

  • Start the day off right with a huge breakfast from 3 Azzam

4. Get your culture fix

Berlin is packed with important historical sights and it’s well worth paying them a visit. But, with so many to explore, the admission prices can add up quickly, so we’ve got a handy tip for you.

Grab a Berlin Museum Pass which gives you free entry into over 30 museums and cultural attractions over three consecutive days. This will be enough time to get through plenty of them. It costs €32 or just €16 upon presentation of a student card.

If you're on a super tight budget, every first Sunday of the month is Museum Sunday in Berlin where most museums open their doors for free. While the lines can be long, if you plan ahead, you could easily visit a couple in one day.

5. Get a bird’s eye view

The Victory Column is a soaring 69 meter high tower built to commemorate Germany's victories against Denmark, Austria, and France between 1864 and 1871. It’s smack bang in the middle of the expansive Tiergarten parklands, a 2km walk from the Brandenburg Gate. And best of all, it’s only €4 and 285 steps to reach the top. So if you’re keen to get a bird's eye view of Berlin but the TV Tower (Fernsehturm) is out of your budget, this is a great alternative. In autumn, the changing colors of the leaves in the Tiergarten are extra beautiful.

Bonus tip: Don’t forget to get a souvenir photo strip at one of the Photoautomat photo booths around the city (there’s one by the East Side Gallery) for only €2.

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