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Berlin in May

My husband and I are starting to plan a trip to Berlin for next May. There is plenty of info in the guidebooks, but I have one main question that the books don’t answer: What are the best neighborhoods for renting an apartment there? We’d like to be close to transportation, and also be in an area that’s interesting to walk around in.
We’re thinking of staying about a week, or possibly a bit more, and we vastly prefer our own apartment to a hotel.
Many thanks.

Posted by
2064 posts

I have zero knowledge of apartment rentals in Berlin BUT as for an area - Savignyplatz and South between Kantstrasse and Kurfurstendamm would be an ideal base - transportation options abound as do restaurants and shopping. I've spent close to 140 nights in that area while soaking up everything that Berlin has to offer.

That would be my choice, others will chime in with their favourite areas, I'm sure.

Posted by
5135 posts

I stayed at the Adina Apartment Hotel Hackescher Markt in the Hackescher Markt area. I stayed in a studio since I was by myself but they have 1-2 bedroom apartments with fully equipped kitchens, washer and dryer and so on. They do have hotels in other Berlin locations as well, but I personally really liked this location. The staff was friendly and courteous, and the rooms were very well prepared, large, clean and nice. Breakfast is available although given the kitchen facilities, I just ate in my room in the morning.

Also, the hotel is very convenient to the U-Bahn, S-Bahn, and trams, and is an easy walk to the major museums. The DDR museum is only a few blocks away along and Museum Island is not much farther. There is a Rewe grocery store a few blocks away along with wine shop and many really good restaurants. I would definitely stay in this location again.

Posted by
2109 posts

I stayed at an AirBnB in Prenzlauer Berg neighborhood and loved it. Was about a block off a main tram line and two blocks from an S-Bahn stop with several grocery stores nearby, very quiet neighborhood. Took maybe 10-15 minutes to get to most major sights. Since I stayed in 2016 they have cracked down on AirBnB rentals, so the one I stayed in is no longer listed, but there are tons in the area (Prenzlauer Alee and Wichertstraße)

Posted by
6826 posts

meredith, you haven't filled out your home-city profile, so we don't have a clue if you regularly visit (say ... ) a large American city. It's even more true in Europe that large cities have excellent transit networks. It simply isn't that important what neighborhood you stay in. I will say that I try to be near a transit station with multiple lines, to speed up daily excursions. My point is that you NEED daily "U-Bahn" travel to see a city the size of Berlin. Now, if you want to sit on a bench every morning, or walk home after dinner most nights, that's a different matter.

As a native of NY city, I am aware of how harmful AirBnB is to local housing markets. Is it really "living local" to have a coffee-pod machine and a washer and dryer as basic requirements for vacation travel? We found it useful to have a (hotel) Concierge in Berlin, to get tickets to private art galleries and things like that.

Posted by
9 posts

Thanks to all for the new replies! This is such a helpful group. Tim, I'll update my info right now - thanks for mentioning it.

Posted by
1663 posts

I stayed at Old Town Apartments ( Definitely feels like an apartment and it's on a residential street with good cafes and restaurants and markets. Convenient location, short walk to public transportation, about 15 minutes walk to Hackesher Markt, 20 minutes walk to Museum Island.

Posted by
1895 posts

Make sure that whatever apartment you rent is legal. I know the authorities have tried to impose stricter laws against AirBnB.

There are numerous apartmenthotels in the area which give you the feel of an apartment but have a front desk in case you need help. Which is always helpful if you don't speak the language and have an emergency.

First timers I'd probably go with anywhere in Mitte-the center.

Posted by
3049 posts

Definitely stay in the east for more interesting and walkable neighborhoods.

Hackesermarkt is a really cool and very central area (as much as you can be "central" in a city as spread out as Berlin). It's popular however, so it will be pricey.

I tend to stay in Friedrichshain/Kreuzberg-Ost because they've got hip walkable neighborhoods and a fun scene, and because it's not a super posh area, costs are lower for flats.

Posted by
149 posts

I had a fabulous private tour guide in Berlin. We spent two afternoons with him and felt like it was money well spent. I’m still attending g his weekly zoom lectures on German history. PM me if you’d like his contact info.