The alternative Friedrichshain district, formerly located in East Berlin, was one of the most damaged areas of the city during World War II. It is connected to the trendy Kreuzberg district by the castle-like Oberbaum Bridge (Oberbaumbrücke) and is now home to some of the city’s best clubs and bars, including the notorious Berghain.
After the Berlin Wall came down, Friedrichshain became one of the most attractive neighborhoods to live, due to low rents. This attracted many young students and artists who made the district into one of the most urban and creative in Berlin. Tours to Friedrichshain generally discuss life during and after the Cold War, paying particular attention to the East Side Gallery, a long stretch of the Berlin Wall that is currently used as an open-air gallery.
Friedrichshain is unparalleled in culture, with a number of food and beer tours available, as well as pub crawls that swing by the numerous bars and clubs dotting Revaler Strasse. If you’d like to dive deep into the history of the neighborhood, private tours generally pass by the German Democratic Republic–era relics that are still prevalent in the area.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Friedrichshain is a must for art lovers, foodies, and Cold War history buffs.
- The streets of Berlin are mostly cobblestoned so wear comfortable shoes to walk on the uneven surfaces.
- Grab a bite to eat or enjoy a beer at one of the many bars and restaurants around the Boxhagener Platz area.
How to Get There
The U5 underground line runs through a majority of Friedrichshain; several overground lines run parallel. From the East Side Gallery, the M10 tram line takes you along Warschauer Strasse to many of the bars, clubs, and restaurants that make this district so popular.
When to Get There
Some say that the best time to hang out in Friedrichshain is when the sun sets and the clubs are in full swing. During the day, there are many GDR-era monuments to explore, and Sundays feature a flea around the popular Boxhagener Platz. In general, the best time to visit Berlin is during the warmer, drier months of May through September.
Experience Friedrichshain Like a Local
If you’ve been to Berlin before and want to see it from a different perspective, Friedrichshain is an ideal place to stay to get a unique feel for the city. Hang out at the RAW Cultural Center, built in an abandoned railway station; see the ever-changing murals at the East Side Gallery; grab a variety of international cuisines at Boxhagener Platz; and dance the night away at a slew of clubs on Revaler Strasse.