Let us start by saying that it is probably a good idea to reserve a table at La Lucha, as it seems to get extremely busy. The high demand is justified though, as La Lucha adds a very interesting and, more importantly, very delicious twist to Mexican staples.
What seems to become a trend right now – La Lucha orientates itself toward authentic flavors, but takes them up a notch. For example, what would you say about ‚blue corn tortilla with smoked ricotta, melted gouda, crispy parmesan and figs‘? We’d say „yes, please!!“ Modern cuisine might often have the problem that it wants to be too modern, too pretty and too visual and then forgets all about the flavour. As far as we are concerned, this certainly is not the problem here. The food tastes as good as it looks, if not better.
We also especially like the restaurant’s belief in sharing food. To encourage this, every order is served as soon as it is ready, without a schedule in mind. We thus recommend to order a bunch of smaller meals and then share everything once it is on the table (have we mentioned the blue tortillas!? Because they are amazing).
In Spanish, La Lucha means “the struggle.” Mexicans are passionate and hard working people, and they use the term La Lucha in a positive way, to refer to their drive to achieve what they believe in. We share the drive and passion of the Mexican people, and strive everyday to bring you an honest, delicious and authentic Mexican experience. La Lucha is our struggle to bring Berlin a taste of the real Mexico.
Berlin is not only great, because of its bustling city center, but there are also numerous scenic day trip options, many only a short S-Bahn journey away.
What about starting your exploration of Berlin’s surrounding area at the royal grounds of Schloss Glienicke, for example? Standing on the castle’s premises, you might feel a bit as if you were transported into an Italian movie set. And not without reason – in 1823, when Prince Carl von Preußen returned from his trip to Italy, he was fascinated by the Italian culture and architecture and therefore fulfilled his dream of an Italian replica of the buildings that he had seen in Italy. The castle with its mediterranean character became his summer home. What remains today is the castle, a „casino“, an orangerie, a big lion fountain and the royal garden.
Once you’re done strolling around the royal premises and you still feel like walking, you can take the path close by that leads you along the Havel up to the Pfaueninsel and the Wannsee. For some food and refreshments, you might like to take a little pit stop at the restaurant „Wirtshaus Moorlake“ which is situated along the way.
Where? Schloss Glienicke, Königstraße 36, 14109 Berlin (you can take the S-Bahn to "Wannsee" and then continue with the bus 316 for a 12 minute ride to "Schloss Glienicke").
Opening Hours: The premises can be visited all year round. If you also like to see the inside of the castle, opening hours are as follows:
January - February: Closed
March: Open Saturday-Sunday, 10am-4pm
April - October: Open Tuesday - Sunday 10am-5:30pm
November - December: Open Saturday-Sunday, 10am-4pm
Admission: 6€ (5€ reduced) for the castle
Right opposite the Volkspark Hasenheide (*rabbit-heath*) in Kreuzberg, you find the restaurant Con Tho, which is Vietnamese for rabbit. Coincidence? We don’t think so. If you like Vietnamese food, but are a bit bored of the same old standard menu, Con Tho offers a different take on the typical Vietnamese cuisine. It’s a fusion of local ingredients and typical Vietnamese staples. Appetizers are sorted by small and medium dishes (recommendable are the black rolls or the in coconut water simmered tofu with garlic-mayonnaise sauce). For the main course you need to decide between Com Tam (different rice dishes served in a hot stone bowl), Banh Xeo (different variations of a riceflower crepe) and a Hue Bowl (different interpretations of lemongrass soup). Also recommendable are their own creations of lemonade and tea. As far as we are concerned, it’s almost impossible to make a choice that you’ll regret. Seating situation in the warmer months is perfect due to the nice outside terrace. As long as temperature is on the chilly side, you’ll find a cosy spot inside between bamboo sticks and big lampions. Consider making a reservation, if you come to prime time dinner times (8pm onwards), because it gets crowded quickly.
This little joint in Neukölln has not been named Burrito Baby for nothing. Upon ordering one of their burritos, be ready for being handed an almost toddler sized one. Seating is scarce, which makes it especially nice during the summer months, because you can sit outside. This being said, we still recommend coming here, no matter the season, simply for the following dishes: one of their well-filled burittos or their ‚House Nachos‘. Find their full menu here.
Although it’s been a couple of years since we have been to the Pfaueninsel – Peacock Island, we have still fond memories of this trip. Close to Berlin Wannsee, it is the perfect day adventure for a sunny weekend. The Pfaueninsel has a very idyllic, almost enchanted vibe to it and as soon as one stepps foot on the ground of the island, one immidiately forgets that just an hour ago they were paving their way through busy streets in the city. The island certainly does its name justice and you’ll find several free-ranging peacocks walking around that give this place it’s fairytale atmosphere.
The island was rediscovered by Friedrich Wilhelm II, King of Prussia, who used it as a romantic venue for secret meetups with his mistress. Between 1794 and 1797, he had a little summer palace built on the island. Although many buildings in Berlin were damaged during the Second World War, the little palace on Peacock Island survived unscathed and so still remains in its original form today. Since 1990 the entire island has been a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Where?Peacock Island, Nikolskoer way, 14109 Berlin (it is best to take the S-Bahn to 'Wannsee'. From there it is a short walk or bus ride, Bus 218 or 316, up to the small ferry that takes you to the island).
When? Nov-Feb 10am-4pm, March 9am-6pm, April 9am-7pm, May-August: 9am-8pm, Sept 9am-7pm, Oct 9am-6pm.
Admission:4€ (reduced 3€)
(This account is written by a person who really likes sports) There are tons of sports opportunities in Berlin. The easiest way to take advantage of all of them (or let’s say a lot of them) is to have ‚the golden ticket‘, when it comes to doing sports in Berlin. Over the last year, I became a huge fan of the Urban Sports Club. A sports membership that allows you access to numerous gyms, yoga studios, swimming pools and other sports venues. I usually get bored easily and like to do a variety of different things. I love being flexible, not only of what kind of sports I do, but also when and where. Most venues do not require a sign-up in advance (a few exceptions apply), which gives you maximum flexibility.
How it works: as soon as you sign up online, you download an app. The app lists all USC partners in and around Berlin. You can filter by activity, venue, time, radius and area or just scroll through all the listings. Once you have found an activity, all that is left for you to do is to show up at the place and log in via a QR code. Done.
During a normal week, I would do a high intensity training with a group outside or inside, visit a standard gym and do weights, and go to a late-night yoga class. Granted, most standard gyms provide all these options under one roof. I guess it depends on what you are looking for and what is most important to you. I personally don’t always like the atmosphere in gyms and also don’t like to be bound to just one place. Especially, when it comes to yoga, I much rather go to a good smelling yoga studio than a sweaty gym (there are some pretty cool yoga locations in Berlin, especially in Kreuzberg).
Also good to know: you can pause and cancel your membership monthly.
(Although this reads like a paid ad, it’s not. I am just a big fan of the concept).
If you are like us and have discovered your love for whiskey pretty late in life, you hopefully have friends that quickly point you into the right direction when it comes to finding the perfect place for you new craving. If not. Listen up. Keith Bar is a rusty little bar in Neukölln, specilaizing in – and we quote „good whisky. And good music. And good food pop-ups. And good performances. And good art. And good cocktails. And good times with friends. And good beers…“. The bar is cozy and dark (the lighting mainly comes from candle light, as is common for so many bars in Berlin) with vintage wood furniture. Prices are quite reasonable and we never had to fight for a table – yet.
Whenever one comes back to the Berlinische Galerie, one could wonder: “have I ever been in this neighborhood before”? This comes as no surpirse, since the Galerie is randomly located in a very quiet residential area, away from Berlin’s usual hussle and bussle. It was built in the eighties as part of the Internationale Bauausstellung (IBA), the International Building Exhibition. The Berlinische Galerie is one of the newest museums in Germany (founded in 1975) and showcases art from 1870 to the present day from both local and international artists. It features painting, graphics, sculpture, multimedia – photography and architecture. There is a permanent exhibition (“Art in Berlin 1880-1980”) on the first floor and regularly changing exhibitions on the ground floor. My favorite room is the first one, which usually holds a big spatial art installation.
Where? Alte Jakobstraße 124–128, 10969 Berlin Germany
Opening Hours: Wednesday–Monday 10am–6 pm, closed on Tuesdays
Admission: 10€ (reduced 7€)
(This account is written by a former „Weddinger“) The Volkspark Humboldthain (named after explorer and scientist Alexander von Humboldt) was one of my favorite spots when I was living in Wedding a couple of years ago. It is a cute little park opposite the U- and S-Bahn station ‚Gesundbrunnen‘. There is a rose garden and several spots to chill and hang out (including a swimming pool that is open in the summer months), but the highlight is the climb up to the Flak Tower. You can chose between walking or mastering the narrow stairs (also a perfect training spot for runners). Up there you have a great panorama view of Berlin. The Flak Tower is a seven story bunker originally built under Hitler’s orders to protect Berlin from aerial attacks during the Second World War (tours are provided by the Berlin Underground Association).
Where? Brunnenstraße 100, 13357Berlin. Opposite the S-Bahn station ‚Gesundbrunnen‘
This account is written by a real Freiburg lover: Freiburg – situated in the south-west of Germany between the mountains of the Black Forest and one of Germany’s finest wine regions, the Kaiserstuhl, is not only one of Germany’s oldest university towns, but also very dear to my heart. When I was 9 years old my dad relocated from Berlin to Freiburg. Ever since, I spent nearly all my school holidays down there. Having grown up in Berlin, Freiburg has always been a good counterpart to Berlin and a perfect holiday destination – an amazing blend of nature, cultural events and deeelicious food!
What it has to offer
The marvelous panorama of the Black Forest and the option to spontaneously take the lift up the mountains and go for an afternoon skiing adventure, while winter in the city hasn’t even arrived yet. You can also just hop on the Breisgau S-Bahn and take a trip to and around the beautiful wine region Kaiserstuhl where you can find delicious wines, all locally grown and produced. If you are up for a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, why not try a 24h hike?! For more information check out this website: http://schwarzwälder-genussmanufaktur.de/
As one of Germany’s most southern cities, Freiburg is famous for its amazing weather, with more days of sunshine than any other place in the country. Moreover, since Freiburg is such a university town, it does not lack the buzzling life that students bring along – lots of bars, cafés and cultural events.
When in Freiburg you have to pay a visit to one of the famous “Strausse” of the region. A typical Strausse is a small family-run restaurant that is usually situated at a vineyard and only opens during the wine picking season. Their menu offers all the local specialities that one could wish for – Bibiliskäse (a light quark with fresh herbs) with Brägele (sauteed potatoes), Flammkuchen (onions and speck with crème fraiche on a thin pizza base) and of course wineeeee!
What a real Freiburger does
As an almost half local Freiburger myself, I have gotten to know a lot of Freiburg traditions. One and probably also my favorite one is when you arrive at the Freiburg Hauptbahnhof, you get yourself a bottled beer and climb on to the Blaue Brücke (the Blue Bridge), one of Freiburg’s most significant features, overlooking the train tracks with a beautiful view of the panoramic Black Forest mountains in the background.
The Canals or better known as “Bächle”, small water-filled runnels, that run all through the old town of Freiburg, stem from the Middle Age, when they were used to fight fires, provide water for people and animals and of course to cool off during those famously hot summers. These days people still use them to dig their toes into the cold water or play around. There is a Freiburg saying that says if you fall into one of those Bächle unintentionally, you will end up marrying a Freiburger ;-).
How to get there
Take the direct ICE train from Berlin Hbf, which takes you to Freiburg Hbf in 6h and 14 min to be exact (find cheap fares on DB Sparpreisfinder).