The Best Shopping in Berlin

Though Berlin’s late nights make sleeping in the next day all too tempting, the city’s shops and farmers markets are very good reason to get up and out. If you need a clothing store for your next out-to-the-clubs outfit, bikini berlin is definitely worth a visit--it’s the go-to department store for fashion-forward and design-minded types. A more traditional but equally stunning shopping center is the century-old Kaufhaus des Westens. But if you really want to mix with locals, the city’s outdoor markets of both the flea and farmers varieties are truly memorable stops. Shopping local culture your thing? The city’s record and book shops provide hours of entertainment.

Berlin prides itself on its farmers’ markets, which take place every Saturday (and sometimes during the week) all across the city and often have a wonderful atmosphere along with top-notch local produce. The Saturday Winterfeldtmarkt on Schöneberg’s Winterfeldtplatz is one of the most impressive, with more than 100 stalls that sell flowers as well as delicious food. The Saturday bio market on Prenzlauer Berg’s pretty Kollwitzplatz offers an array of local organic goods—from fruits and vegetables to chocolates and fresh pasta—as does the food market at Friedrichshain’s Boxhagener Platz. To get a taste of Turkish Berlin, head to the Landwehr Canal’s Maybachufer on Tuesday or Friday, when the local Turkish community sets up stalls there selling food, clothes, textiles, and more.
Budapester Str. 38-50, 10787 Berlin, Germany
Germany’s first concept-mall can be found between the redeveloped Zoologischer Garten area and the ultra-hip 25 Hour Hotel. Occupying a recently refurbished 1950s building, its slickly reworked interior now houses flagship stores, quirky boutiques, and outlets from local fashion designers, as well as trendy coffee and snack stalls and healthy smoothie shacks. A wide staircase takes you up to the roof terrace where you can stroll and check out the monkey enclosures in the adjacent zoo.
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, second-hand bikes, and inexpensive clothes. I wandered aimlessly through the park for about an hour, just taking in the sights and sounds of the city. At 3 p.m., a live karaoke party breaks out. It’s the perfect place to release your inner diva. Both the U-Bahn and the S-Bahn stop at Schönhauser Allee, as does the M1 tram.
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 less touristy. You’re much more likely to find a good deal on used books, cool T-shirts (some by local designers, even!), music records, and knickknacks. Because the market is relatively small, it’s quite enjoyable to take a stroll through the stalls and then enjoy a picnic on the grassy area in the middle of the square. Many cafes and restaurants are situated on the streets bordering Boxhagener Platz so you won’t be bored for things to do. The market is open Sundays during daylight. On Saturdays in the same area you’ll find a fresh food & produce market.
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 can enjoy coffee from Voo’s in-store Companion Coffee Showroom, serving specialty coffee and tea and limited baked goods. The store also hosts exhibits, readings, and concerts. This appeared in the August/September 2013 issue.
Tauentzienstraße 21-24, 10789 Berlin, Germany
The largest department store in continental Europe, Kaufhaus des Westens (usually abbreviated as simply KaDeWe) is over a century old and a must for any shopper visiting Berlin. After being largely destroyed in World War II, its reopening in 1950 was not only an important shopping moment but a propaganda one too, an embodiment of the prosperity of West Berlin. Regardless of its Cold War significance, the sixth-floor food hall provides an unforgettable culinary experience with a chance to sample the best German and international products.
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 in incorporating chocolate, as well as cacao, into savory dishes. You’ll want to pick up some gifts for friends at home—or just snacks for later in the day—at the shop.
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, I’m a sucker for colored gel pens and stationery. One loop around this shop, and you’ll understand why Berlin ranks high in creative design.
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