Start exploring the creative heart of Berlin. Emblazoned on one side with the German Zentrum Kreuzberg and on the other with the Turkish Kreuzberg Merkezi the imposing ’70s block crossing over the Adalbertstraße in the centre of Kreuzberg stands as a testament to the diversity and creativity of our neighbourhood.
Since the ’50s Kreuzberg has become home to migrants arriving in Berlin and is now the centre of the city’s sizable Turkish-German community. Thousands arrived as so called ‘Gastarbeiter’ to fill large gaps in the post-war West German economy and many stayed on, reflected today in the cultural and linguistic diversity of our local Kiez. Our side of the borough, often still referenced as SO36 after its old West German postcode, has always had a vibrant counter-cultural and creative scene. Kreuzberg was enclosed by the Berlin Wall on three sides and consequently the neighbourhood’s low rents attracted migrant workers, creatives and punks who contributed to its vibrant cultural scene. In recent years Kreuzberg has truly become the creative heart of Berlin – here is our pick of ’36’s best places to eat, drink, shop, grab a coffee or just while the day away. Enjoy.
A bite to eat: Restaurants
Our picks taking you right through from Kahvaltı to Mittagessen to Dinner
Kreuzberg is the centre of Berlin’s Turkish community and Hasir is an institution in the city. Based at numbers 10 and 12 on Adalbertstraße, the charcoal grill of the Ocakbaşı at number 12 takes centre stage. The menu is replete with grilled meats, fish and mezze, all of which can be washed down with a glass or two of Rakı.
Room for another course?
Drinks O’Clock: Bars
It’s got to be five o’clock somewhere. Here’s where to find expert cocktails through to a Berliner Pilsner
Our local is named after Bela Lugosi, the Hungarian actor who played Dracula in the 1930s, the deconstructed interior with its unplastered walls and concrete floor somewhat evokes the oeuvre of its namesake, but it’s cosy and well put-together, with a great selection of classic drinks on the menu.
Still time for a tipple?
Spill the beans: Coffee
Need a pick me up? We’re all about coffee. See our picks for the best caffeine hit in Kreuzberg.
Walk through the unmarked Oranienstraße passage to the Hinterhof of number 24 and you find yourself in the former locksmiths that is now home to Companion Coffee and its host the Voo Store. Companion Coffee’s ethos is all about sourcing the best quality espresso from across the world and sharing it with their customers, and that is exactly what they do… brilliantly.
The caffeine hit list
Bonanza Coffee Roasters | Adalbertstraße 70, 10999 Berlin | 030 208488020
Retail Therapy: Shopping
Where we empty our wallets - we promise they’ll be no regrets!
Hardwax is perhaps the Berlin record store. Founded by Basic Channel duo Moritz von Ostwald and Mark Ernestus in 1989 in an old factory building by the Landwehr canal it soon came to be the nexus of the Berlin-Detroit axis. The store carries a wide selection whilst staying true to the music it started off with, giving it a loyal customer base of DJs, both in front of and behind the counter; the legendary Berlin DJs Marcel Dettmann and Vainqueur both used to work here.
The best of Kreuzberg’s stellar institutions from galleries, museums and the theatre to the great outdoors
Located in the impressive 1960s Brutalist St Agnes church, the König Galerie is worth a visit for the building that houses it alone. However, step inside and you’ll be greeted by work from a range of artists from the local to international, the established to the emerging. The gallery’s programme focuses on interdisciplinary, concept-oriented and space-based approaches in a variety of different media.
Babylon l Dresdener Straße 126 l 10999 Berlin l 030 61609693
Berlinische Galerie l Alte Jakobstraße 124-128 l 10969 Berlin l 030 78902600
Künstlerhaus Bethanien l Kottbusser Straße 10 l 10999 Berlin l 030 6169030
Perhaps finally a nice relaxing walk along the Paul-Linke-Ufer canal…. The bar and cafe ‘Pavilion am Ufer’ is a nice place to finish. Paul-Linke-Ufer 4 l 10999 Berlin l 030 69814849
We hope that you enjoy our tour around Kreuzberg—since moving our offices to ’36 in February we’ve been having a ball checking out our neighboring coffee spots, galleries, shops, restaurants and of course, bars for a cheeky after-work tipple.
Interested in discovering more of Berlin? Check out our guide to Mitte, or read stories from the people we know living in the city here.
For more urban adventures around the globe check out our city guides.