It’s no big secret that Berlin offers one of the best nightlife experiences in Europe, there is literally something for everyone! When you’re new however to the city, knowing the best places to go on a night out is naturally difficult. It’s often so easy to fall into the trap of going to rubbish touristy clubs, which was what I regretfully, found myself doing when I first arrived here. Having been in Berlin for almost four months now, I have thankfully stumbled on a number of great places which I can now highly recommend. Chatting with friends in my German language courses at DeutschAkademie about their favourite places in Berlin to go out has also given me a further insight into some of the better places to go. Below is a summary of my favourite places for nights out in Berlin and some recommendations from friends which I’m intending on trying out.
Just a short walk from U-Bhf Moritzplatz in Kreuzberg, Ritter Butzke is a excellent venue for those who are fans of electro music. The club, which operates on the ground floor of an old factory, originally started out as an illegal club but since 2009 has been running as an official venue. I’ve been there on several occasions and each time I’ve had a fantastic night! The music has always been great, with many Berlin-born DJs playing there. The crowd, which is typically made up largely of locals, has also always been pretty nice and cool. The venue itself, which is relatively large and consisting of three main dance floors, is also really great. If you’re a electro fan, this is a definite must!
Situated between U-Bhf Moritzplatz and U-Bhf Görlitzer Bahnhof in Kreuzberg, Oranienstraße is currently one of my favourite streets in Berlin. The street is filled with many great restaurants, cafes, bars and cool little shops. It’s a excellent place to visit both during the day and at night. A particular favourite bar of mine, that I’ve been to on a number of occasions, is Luiza. The atmosphere is relaxed and intimate, perfect when meeting with a few friends for drinks. They also do some great (and strong!) cocktails at fairly reasonable prices! I would also recommend Habibi Imbiss (Oranienstr. 30), just a few metres away from Luiza, if you’re wanting to grab a quick bite to eat – they serve really delicious falafels and shawarmas!
Süss War Gestern
Also situated in Friedrichshain, Süss War Gestern is a brilliant bar/club that I recently went to with friends from my German language classes. The venue consists of several rooms, with three dance floors, several seating areas with sofas, an area with football tables and even an area where you can play Super Mario on a retro video console! There are always lots of people, but the vibe is cool and interesting with again, a mostly German crowd. There was no entry fee when I went there and the drinks were fairly cheap. To me, this place really epitomises Berlin and it’s somewhere that I will definitely be going to again! I would recommend this place to everyone!
Kater Blau is a club which I’ve heard a lot of good things about, from both my German friends from Berlin and my course mates in my German classes. All have raved about what a cool place it is. Situated in Kreuzberg by the River Spree, this cool indoor and outdoor club, operates from an old soap factory. The music is typically electro and the crowd consists of a good mix of people. The bouncers can apparently be sometimes quite difficult, so entry is not always that easy. Once you’re in however, you’re in for a good night. I’ve been meaning to try this place for a while now and will be going there as soon as I can. From what I’ve heard and read, this is another 'must’ in Berlin!
A Berlin club, which has been recommended to me by one of my DeutschAkademie course mates as an absolute 'must’ is the Berghain. The club, which operates in an disused power plant close to Ostbahnhof, is probably Berlin’s most famous club, notorious for its great DJs and great-mix of people. The music is for the most part techno, however house and electro music is also played in the club’s Panorama Bar. If you are considering to go to the Berghain, be prepared for the long queues and the somewhat difficult bouncers! One of my DeutchAkademie course mates told me he was recently there and had a great night, but only after having queued for two hours! Others have told me stories of queuing for ages and then being refused entry for no apparent reason. I’ve not yet been brave enough to face this notorious queue, especially with Berlin’s cold winter weather. But this is perhaps somewhere I’ll try in the spring or summer instead! I definitely want to go here at least once.
A final and separate tip
A final and separate tip for going on a night out in Berlin that I’d like to add, would be to make sure you have an accepted form of identification with you. For years I have used my UK driving license as ID, but recently I was refused entry to a club (which I shall not name) because they didn’t see this as an acceptable form of identification. They wanted to see an ID card or a passport instead. So please consider this to avoid the same disappointment as me!
Of course this is only a short list of my personal recommendations. I’m sure there are many other equally great spots in Berlin which I’m still yet to discover. But for now these are my top recommendations. I hope that this list is of some help to you and if you are to try any of these places, that you have a awesome time there