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Katy O'Brien's Berlin and prague

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Mühlenstraße 3-100, 10243 Berlin, Germany
The most famous remaining stretch of the Berlin Wall gets its name from its location on the east side of the Spree River, as well as from the collection of political and satirical murals. Originally painted just after the wall fell, the...
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Maybachufer 29, 12047 Berlin, Germany
It’s like a typical southern European market, with shouting and chaos—not very German. Maybachufer between Kottbusser Damm and Friedelstrasse, Tuesdays and Fridays, 11 a.m.–6:30 p.m. This story appeared in the July/August 2010 issue. See all of ...
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Oberbaumbrücke, 10243 Berlin, Germany
"Diversity" is a good word to describe Berlin. And there's no better place to get a dose of diversity than along the River Spree in Berlin. If you simply walk around the river banks near the Oberbaum Bridge connecting Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg,...
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Kreuzberg, Berlin, Germany
One of Berlin's young and hip neighborhoods is Kreuzberg, in the south of Mitte. The neighborhood is known for its very large percentage of immigrants and second-generation immigrants, many of whom are Turkish. But in recent years, the area has...
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Museum Island, Berlin, Germany
Visiting at least one of the five museums that make up Museum Island, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a must for any serious culture seeker in Berlin. The pioneering concept of an ensemble of public institutions brimming with exquisite artworks...
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Bernauer Str. 63-64, 13355 Berlin, Germany
In true Berlin fashion, flea markets are not hard to find. One of the newer fleas takes place every Sunday at Mauerpark. I arrived on the early side, around 10am, and the space was already buzzing with locals on the hunt for vintage items,...
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Platz der Republik 1, 11011 Berlin, Germany
Built by Kaiser Wilhelm I in the late 19th century as a gesture to parliamentarians, Berlin's famed Reichstag came into its own during the Weimar era—Germany’s first attempt at democracy. The parliament building burned under...
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Bodestraße 1-3, 10178 Berlin, Germany
One of the biggest stars of the five museums on Museum Island, the Pergamon was the last to open, in 1930. Built to resemble a Babylonian temple, it houses a trove of ancient treasures from the Middle East, with highlights that include the...
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Rosenthaler Str. 39, 10178 Berlin, Germany
Ever been on a trip and found an attraction so weird and wonderful that words cannot give it justice? Well, in Berlin I found myself in this situation. While on a tour with "Alternative Berlin," I was transported to a hidden courtyard that has...
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Danziger Str. 61, 10435 Berlin, Germany
If you do only one tour during your visit, I suggest the free three-hour "Alternative Berlin" tour run by this company. It is mostly walking, with a subway and train here and there. (Make sure to follow your young, fast, walking tour guide...
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Brunnenstraße 197-198, 10119 Berlin, Germany
If you're looking for the epitome of "Hipster Berlin," you can't find anyplace more suitable than Mein Haus am See. In the most hip area of Mitte, Rosenthaler Platz, the cafe is more than just a coffee spot. It's also a bar and club. During the...
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Lindenstraße 9-14, 10969 Berlin, Germany
The architecturally striking Jewish Museum is the best place in Berlin to get an overview of German-Jewish relations and to understand the nature of the integration of the two cultures before the Holocaust's horrors. Designed by Daniel...
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Herbert-von-Karajan-Straße 1, 10785 Berlin, Germany
It's hard to miss the distinctive tent-shaped, yellow Berlin Philharmonic Hall, considered by many to be one of the world’s best concert halls. Designed by Hans Scharoun, it was built in the 1960s as a replacement for one destroyed in World...
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Pariser Platz, 10117 Berlin, Germany
Napoleon and his armies marched through it; revolutionaries and Nazis gathered beneath it; the Berlin Wall ran right behind: It's safe to say that Berlin’s iconic Brandenburg Gate, completed in 1791, has pretty much seen it all. Designed by...
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Rosenthaler Str. 40 -41, 10178 Berlin, Germany
This is one of the most hectic and lively courtyards in Berlin. Located in Mitte, it is named after the Hackeschen Market, which is across the street. As in many of Berlin's courtyards, the building complex around it consists of offices,...
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Budapester Str. 48-50, 10787 Berlin, Germany
Two must-sees on Kurfürstendamm Street in Berlin are the KaDeWe department store (with its foodie-heaven top floor) and the remaining spire of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. The structure is all that remains of the original 1890-era church...
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Cora-Berliner-Straße 1, 10117 Berlin, Germany
Occupying a prominent space between Brandenburg Gate and Potsdamer Platz, this memorial (also known as the Holocaust-Mahnmal, or Holocaust Memorial) has almost 3,000 gray oblong pillars (stelae), arranged at varying heights, that form a kind of...
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Auguststraße 58, 10119 Berlin, Germany
The Barn is a bucolic coffee bar in the Mitte district that boasts top-quality coffee (from Copenhagen's famed fair-trade Coffee Collective) and a local-food ethos, inspired largely by the owner's formative years in rural Germany and his mother's...
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Sony Center, Potsdamer Straße 4, 10785 Berlin, Germany
The Sony Center at the Potsdamer Platz has a "ceiling" that's a work of art. Walk inside this building on a sunny day, and you'll be greeted by a center flooded with warm sunshine—and reflections of the steel-and-textile ceiling on nearly every...
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Kottbusser Damm 80, 10967 Berlin, Germany
Berlin is good for fast food—sushi, kebabs, pizza, currywurst. This style ofköfteis from Anatolia, from Turkey. They fry minced sausages and serve it with mint, various herbs, and salad. Kottbusser Damm between Sanderstrasse and Pflügerstrasse....
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Kiehnwerderallee 1-3, 12437 Berlin, Germany
Even fun has a shelf life. This is what runs through my mind as I walk around Spreepark, the abandoned, dilapidated amusement park in Berlin. When East Germany and the GDR fell, so did many of the businesses operating under the rules of communism....
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Revaler Str. 99, 10245 Berlin, Germany
The weekly RAW Flohmarkt (flea market) occurs every Sunday in between the abandoned warehouses and parking lots along Revaler Strasse. The area is also home to several of Berlin's best nightclubs, but Sunday mornings and afternoons see a different...
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Grünberger Str. 75, 10245 Berlin, Germany
The weekly flohmarkt (flea market) in Friedrichshain's Boxhagener Platz is a popular spot where locals meet up for shopping, drinking, or just a bit of fun each Sunday. While the Mauer Park flea market gets most of the tourists, this one is far...
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Oderberger Str. 29, 10435 Berlin, Germany
For the past 10 years, Mario, the owner of VEBorange, has been selling DDR (East Germany) collectables and other German antiques. Most items in the shop on Oderberger Strasse are objects made and sold between 1950 and 1980, making this a great...
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Bernauer Str. 63-64, 13355 Berlin, Germany
On Sundays, sit in the grass at Mauer Park, drink beer, and listen to karaoke.
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Winterfeldtstraße, 10781 Berlin, Germany
The fresh fruit and vegetable market near Nollendorfplatz is a great place to spend a Saturday afternoon. One of the largest weekly markets in Berlin, you can find fresh fruit and veggies from local producers as well as flowers, meats, and...
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Esmarchstraße 19, 10407 Berlin, Germany
The small and friendly cupcake bakery on Hufelandstrasse in the Bötzowviertel, Vanilla Berlin is a great place to visit for a sweet snack in Prenzlauer Berg. A few blocks from Kollowitzplatz where you'll find boutiques and restaurants,...
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Krossener Str. 12, 10245 Berlin, Germany
Since 2007, this small cupcake bakery & coffee shop serves some of Berlin's best homemade cupcakes. With large communal tables and a sweet location in the heart of Friedrichshain, this is a great cafe to visit for a snack on a winter afternoon. In...
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Georgenstraße 193, 10117 Berlin, Germany
Located just across the street from the main library for Humboldt University, this hipster cafe is a great place for a cup of coffee or a light lunch. With free Wi-Fi (though no power outlets) it's a good place to do a bit of work or read a book....
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Rosenthaler Str. 72A, 10119 Berlin, Germany
In the popular Rosenthaler Platz, this cafe is a popular meeting spot for local entrepreneurs, creative business types, and students. With its outdoor seating, it's also a great place for people watching. The coffee is good, and like most cafes in...
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Karl-Marx-Allee 72, 10243 Berlin, Germany
Serving the neighborhood for more than 50 years, this nostalgic cafe remains a popular spot even after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Start your wandering in East Germany here, with its romantic interior and mini historic museum display, along with...
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Oderberger Str. 44, 10435 Berlin, Germany
I was so glad to discover this cafe during a stroll in the trendy streets of Prenzlauer Berg, in East Berlin. Prenzlauer Berg is one of the most popular districts, and one of Berlin’s prettiest neighborhoods, known mostly for its art scene. Cafe...
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Oranienstraße 24, 10999 Berlin, Germany
In Berlin’s Kreuzberg district, here you’ll find racks constantly restocked with coveted labels (Wood Wood, Acne, Kenzo, Opening Ceremony) and supersmall brands such as Stutterheim, a Swedish design house that handsews raincoats. In addition you...
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Sanderstraße 11, 12047 Berlin, Germany
Walking around Berlin with a friend, I never expected to hear TLC's "Red Light Special" and the Grizzly Bear's "Two Weeks" coming from a cafe in the Middle Schöneberg. The cafe Sing Blackbird definitely represents the cultural crossroads between...
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Auguststraße 28, 10117 Berlin, Germany
Do You Read Me? is one of the most fabulous bookstores/magazine shops in Berlin. While living in Berlin, I stumbled upon this find purely by chance as I was walking home from a friend's place. I was already on a quest to find the latest editions...
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Prinzenstraße 85, 10969 Berlin, Germany
I dare you to visit Planet Modular and not leave with a stack of new notebooks, Japanese masking tape, or sparkly envelopes. It's unequivocally a supplies haven for artists and crafty DIYers, and while I don't fall into either of those categories,...
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Charlottenstraße 60, 10117 Berlin, Germany
The world’s largest chocolate shop also includes two restaurants and is a dream come true for travelers with a sweet tooth. At the Chocolate Café, you can fill up on hot chocolate, tortes and chocolate treats. The Chocolate Restaurant specializes...
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Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin, Germany
Prenzlauerberg (P'berg), to the east of the Mitte, is one of the loveliest areas in Berlin. The neighborhood is comprised of breathtaking turn-of-the-century architecture, great choices of restaurants, charming little cafes, and one-of-a-kind...
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Europaplatz, 10557 Berlin, Germany
Train travel in Europe has always had a romantic appeal. It could be that unlike freeways, railways are built along the most beautiful and scenic countryside, and there’s nothing better than watching the breathtaking landscapes outside your window...
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Friedrichstraße 43-45, 10117 Berlin, Germany
The year I spent vagabonding around Europe and the Middle East after college was one of the most educational experiences of my life. The train ride from West Germany into West Berlin was very different. Once we crossed into East Germany, the East...
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Klingelhöferstraße 14, 10785 Berlin, Germany
Bauhaus—the German design, crafts, and architecture school founded in 1919 by Walter Gropius—is one of the most famous design movements of the 20th century, and this Berlin museum shows its impressive breadth and influence. Designed by...
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Pannierstraße 5, 12047 Berlin, Germany
One of the best burgers in town. So big you need a strategy to eat it.
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10997 Berlin, Germany
This small taqueria in Kreuzberg serves Berlin's finest tacos. Taco plates and quesadillas are no more than 5 making this one of the cheapest Mexican food restaurants in Berlin.
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Skalitzer Str. 95A, 10997 Berlin, Germany
The Hühnerhaus 36 in Kreuzberg is a Berlin institution. The chicken stand/kiosk is right outside an entrance to the always crowded and ever-popular Görlitzer Park. For under 5 you can get half a roast chicken...mit pommes (with fries). Get it with...
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Wörther Str. 16, 10405 Berlin, Germany
While the neighborhoods south of the River Spree are more famous for their Turkish and Arabic foods, in Berlin you can find falafel fast food & shawarma stands all over town. In Prenzlauer Berg, the small restaurant Salsabil serves the best deal...
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14542 Werder, Germany
The small town of Werder, Germany—about 45 minutes from Berlin—is a small historical city west of Potsdam. Located on the banks of the Havel River, the picturesque town is famous for the annual Baumblütenfest in May. The festival, one of Germany's...
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Alte Schönhauser Str. 46, 10119 Berlin, Germany
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One evening while I was strolling the streets of Mitte, I noticed a hectic scene and a young crowd outside a buzzing restaurant. It was Monsieur Vuong, a hip Vietnamese restaurant with pink and red walls, great cocktails, and fresh Vietnamese...
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8 Boulevard du Palais, 75001 Paris, France
Sainte Chapelle is a true Gothic masterpiece located on Île de la Cité. Sainte Chapelle was founded by King Louis IX as a chapel for the royal palace. Sainte Chapelle houses a small chapel downstairs that is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The...