Complete Guide to Berlin Nightlife

Berlin Nightlife Guide

Berlin, just like New York, is also known as the city that never sleeps.

Unlike other major German cities, Berlin has no curfew, so who's surprised that night turns into day here.

Affordable drink prices make going out in the evening even more attractive. In addition, Berlin is a safe city with low violent crime, so you don't have to be afraid at night.

Entertainment is available around the clock in this vibrant metropolis. Some neighborhoods are known as typical nightlife areas with many cafes and restaurants, bars can be found almost on every street corner and techno clubs are spread all over the city.

Live concerts in jazz clubs, stand up in comedy clubs or musical and theater performances, Berlin has it all.

Here are a few tips to give you a brief overview.

It will certainly not be boring in Berlin.

Nightlife Districts in Berlin

When you visit a city, you don't just want to see the typical tourist attractions, you also want to go out in the evening where the locals meet. It is almost impossible to name the currently hip neighborhoods in a city, because the scene is constantly shifting and what is IN today can be OUT tomorrow. But there are some neighborhoods that have evolved over time into nightlife districts and are always, or still, current.

Friedrichshain: Simon Dach Straße in Friedrichshain is probably the street with the largest culinary offerings and the highest gastronomic density in Berlin. On the Kiez, people drift in a flood of lights, music, and smells. Numerous restaurants offer cuisine from almost all corners of the world, from Vietnamese, Thai, and Indian to Mexican, Mediterranean, Russian, and much more. In addition, there are pubs, cafes, and bars. Just like the locations, the public is also colorfully mixed, here the original Berliner meets the punk, the hippie meets the gourmet.

Simon Dach Straße is best reached from the Warschauer Straße or Frankfurter Tor S-Bahn station, from there it is about a 10-minute walk.

Hackescher Markt and Oranienburgerstraße: In the early 90s, a nightlife district had already emerged in the area around Oranienburger Straße. Bars, pubs, restaurants, and cafés are lined up one after the other. On Oranienburger Straße, everything is a bit classier, shinier, and more glamorous. The clubs, bars, and restaurants in the Hackesche Höfe and also cinema, court theater, and artists' studios attract a wide audience. In Hackescher Markt, one restaurant follows the other.

The neighborhood can be reached via the Oranienburger Tor U-Bahn stop or the Hackescher Hof S-Bahn stop.

Auguststraße and Torstraße: Many cafés place their chairs on the sidewalk in front of the stylish old buildings and give Auguststraße a Mediterranean flair. Rosenthaler Platz, affectionately called "Rosi" by Berliners, is the center of the action. While many kebab stores have dominated the scene in the 1990s, numerous cafés, restaurants, and bars have now set up store here. A mixture of urban lifestyle and new chic prevails.

The district can be reached via the Rosenthaler Platz U-Bahn stop.

City West: Before reunification, City West, one of the most popular nightlife districts in West Berlin, lost its appeal, but has now regained its place among the most popular nightlife districts. Here scene bars alternate with Berlin cult pubs, students sit with artists and visitors often all night. Here, you can experience a very interesting and varied pub crawl. The "Dicke Wirtin" and Savignyplatz is a cult pub with real Berlin tradition.

The neighborhood can be reached via the Zoologischer Garten U-Bahn station.

Oranienstraße: Oranienstraße in Kreuzberg, Berlin is alive. Small restaurants with international cuisine, pubs, bars, everything is lined up close together. It is considered to be the key that helps one to understand Kreuzberg and is known for its numerous trendy clubs and no less popular bars. The narrow sidewalks are full of tables, chairs, benches, and people. Here, you can also find the "Max und Moritz", one of the oldest taverns in Berlin. It has existed since 1902, the atmosphere is hearty and rustic friendly.

The neighborhood can be reached via the Moritzplatz U-Bahn station.

Kreuzkölln: The name is a combination of Kreuzberg and Neukölln, because this neighborhood lies exactly in between. Formerly a social hotspot and an absolute no-go area, in recent years the area has become a popular nightlife district, especially among young people. Particularly in demand are the many restaurants and bars on Weserstraße, which add a lot of alternative charm to the neighborhood. In the "Reuterkiez," as the area around Reuterplatz is called, the rough charm of Neukölln mixes with international impulses.

The neighborhood can be reached via the Hermannplatz U-Bahn station.

Prenzlauer Berg: Younger people and the alternative crowd in particular can be found in the trendy district of Prenzlauer Berg every evening. Since the reunification, the area quickly developed into a popular nightlife district. Kollwitzplatz forms the center of the neighborhood and attracts visitors with its many restaurants, pubs, and bars. Berlin's oldest beer garden, the Prater Biergarten, is also located here. In addition to numerous bars and restaurants, the cult brewery in Schönhauser Allee also has a theater.

The quarter can be reached via the Eberswalder Straße or Schönhauser Allee U-Bahn station.

Nikolaiviertel: Nikolaiviertel in Mitte, Berlin is the oldest settlement area in the city. Largely destroyed during the Second World War, today its medieval-looking alleys and the houses rebuilt in the original style during the post-war period are reminiscent of the Berlin from many hundreds of years ago. It has an idyllic charm and does not seem to be in the middle of a big city. With its numerous restaurants, pubs, and cafes, its the ideal place to go for those who like it a little quieter.

The neighborhood can be reached via the Alexanderplatz or Klosterstraße U-Bahn stops. From there it is only a few minutes walk.

Jazz Clubs in Berlin

One hundred years ago, the first jazz record in Germany was recorded in Berlin. The title, "Tiger Rag," played by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band was released on January 15, 1920. Even though the genre is no longer as popular as it once was, it still has its fans today and conveys the charm of yesteryear. If you would like to visit a jazz club with live music, you will quickly find one in Berlin.

Here are a few of the most famous names on the scene:

The A-Trane and The Hat Jazz-Bar Berlin in Charlottenburg, the Jazzkeller 69 and the Jazzclub Kunstfabrik Schlot in Mitte, Berlin, b flat Accoustic Music & Jazz Club in Hackescher Markt, and the Yorckschlösschen in Kreuzberg.

Please refer to the respective websites for the current program.

Comedy in Berlin

In recent years, an independent comedy culture has developed in Germany with numerous stage programs and comedy clubs, and the trend is rising. In Berlin, there are numerous clubs that offer a varied program ranging from comedy and cabaret to stand-up. In most clubs, you can eat and drink at moderate prices. Often there are full-length programs with renowned artists and cabaret artists, music comedy is on the program as well as comedy magic.

The Comedy Club Kookaburra in Prenzlauer Berg, the Quatsch Comedy Club in the Theater District in the East End and Cosmic Comedy at Belushi in Mitte, Berlin are just a few examples. In addition to Cosmic Comedy, Comedy Café and Chuckleheads English Comedy also offer English-language programs.

For the current program and opening hours, please refer to the respective websites.

Theater, Musicals, and Variety

Berlin's diverse theater scene is made up of large and small stages, classical and international houses, and independent theaters. International theaters, children's and youth theaters, cabaret, revue, and vaudeville theaters are can be found, as well as musical and classical musical theater.

The Berliner Ensemble, the Maxim Gorki Theater, the Vaganten Bühne, the Theater im Palais, the Deutsches Theater and Kammerspiele are some of the classics. (The links are in German)

In addition, there are international theaters where plays are performed in the national language of the respective culture. Various theaters offer performances in English, Spanish, Turkish, Russian, and Polish.

In the theater district in the East End are Friedrichstadtpalast, the Chamäleon Theater, and Admiralspalast. The offerings range from classical theater and opera performances to shows and vaudeville.

The Theater des Westens in Charlottenburg is one of Berlin's best-known musical and operetta theaters, hosting many long-term performances.

In the smaller theaters, the performances change more often.

For the current program and seasons, please refer to the respective websites.

Popular Activities at night in Berlin

Famous Bars

There are countless bars in Berlin, from hip to solid, from wicked to clean, from modern to classic. You can find the right establishment for every possible occasion, experimental, innovative, or conservative. We have put together a list of a few special bars for you.

Fragrances: The house bar of the Ritz-Carlton has a unique bar concept. The menu features fine perfumes. Based on the fragrance you choose; a drink is created. Each cocktail tastes like the perfume you choose smells.

Provocateur: This bar in the eponymous design hotel not far from the Ku'damm in Wilmersdorf presents itself as glamorous, decadent, and playful. The ambience revives the 1920s. The cocktails have unusual names like Pigalle, Applause, and Metropolis and are mixed from even more unusual ingredients like artichoke, Campari Espuma, prickly pear, and aloe vera. They were developed especially for this bar and have nothing to do with the generally known cocktails.

Jamboree: Centrally located on Marlene Dietrich Platz in the Grand Hyatt, Jamboree is a must for anyone who loves the 80s. The retro-style lamps and flea market furniture give a cozy living room atmosphere and contrast with the usual facilities in a 5-star hotel. The drinks, of course, also all relate to the colorful 80s with references to yuppies, punks, and poppers from that time. Jamboree, by the way, means great party or big party in German.

Reingold: A large selection of high-quality cocktails are mixed behind the 17-meter-long counter in front of the golden wall, from classics to current trendy blends from London. Here, real connoisseurs chat with the upscale business scene.

Tausend has retained its reputation as one of Berlin's best high-end bars. It is tucked away under the train tracks at Friedrichstraße station. The bar features a unique space-age decor with a mirrored ceiling, elevated seating, and a golden sphere enveloping one of the walls. On weekends, there's ambient house music.

Monkey Bar: Located on the 10th floor of the boutique Bikini Hotel in Charlottenburg Wilmersdorf, this large rooftop bar offers panoramic views of the city and the Berlin Zoo below. An international selection of drinks and fine wines are offered.

ORA: This bar is located in an old pharmacy on Oranienplatz in Kreuzberg that dates back to 1861. When the new owners turned on the original neon sign "ORANIEN-APOTHEKE" outside, only the three letters - O, R and A - lit up, thus the name was found. A visit to ORA is like stepping back in time, many pieces of furniture from the old pharmacy have been repurposed and now serve as bar equipment. In addition to an innovative menu, there are first-class cocktails.

Sharlie Cheen: Located directly on Rosenthaler Platz in Mitte, Berlin, the Sharlie Cheen Bar mixes more than 200 liqueurs, spirits, and ingredients into cocktails every day, following the example of its ignorant namesake. Bar manager Sharlie recommends the "Com Tollins" and the "Tarragon Special" from his own recipe.

House of Gin: At the House of Gin in the Hotel Palace on Budapester Straße in Charlottenburg, a fabulous 150 different gins and a few exceptional whiskies, tequilas, and rums from all over the world are presented behind the golden counter over four floors.

Cordobar: This wine bar located in Mitte, Berlin offers a selection of over 800 wines, from everyday wines to true treasures for 2,000 euros. In a relaxed ambience, "bites" are served, small hot and cold dishes that provide the right base while drinking.

Buck and Breck is the smallest bar located in Mitte, Berlin. There is room for only 14 guests at the bar's single table. On the menu are mostly classics. The selection is not huge, but the drinks are all the better.

The Viktoria Bar in Schöneberg is a real Berlin institution. It stands out with its lovingly mixed interior from different eras. The cocktails are exceptionally good.

Stue: Located in the hotel of the same name in the Berlin Tiergarten, the Stue presents itself casually and elegantly. The spacious area is reminiscent of a huge living room, and the bar master looks back on 12 years of experience at the Savoy in London, so his drinks are correspondingly first-class.

Deck 5 is a beach bar on the roof of the Allee Arcaden in the middle of the city on Schönhauser Allee. Relaxed music, sand, and outdoor tables give the feeling of being at the beach. The great view of the TV tower and the skyline of East Berlin completes the atmosphere. Deck 5 is open during the summer months starting in May each year.

Famous Clubs

Berlin's club scene can be described as progressive, underground, and new. Here, the mood doesn't really get going until after 2am. Since the 90s, Berlin has been the capital of techno music. There are countless clubs and it seems that new ones open every weekend. But be prepared for long lines and a strict door policies, it's not easy to get access to the top clubs. Knowledge of the DJ means a better chance at getting in. Peak hours are from 1:00 to 3:00, come outside of these hours to be admitted more easily.

Most clubs do not have a dress code, however black is always a good idea. 

Here is the crème de la crème; the best five clubs in Berlin.

Berghain: Hailed by many as one of the best clubs in the world, Berghain is not for the faint of heart. Its pulsating techno beats and hedonistic atmosphere attract thousands of locals every weekend.

Celebrities also like to party here; Lady Gaga is said to have been here, although the club is anything but glamorous. Located in a former power plant, Berghain has a minimalist design with lots of concrete and steel.

The club's selective door policy and its infamous bouncer Sven Marquardt is legendary - be prepared for waits of more than an hour. There are strict rules, taking photos and filming inside the club is forbidden. What happens at Berghain, stays at Berghain.

Address: Am Wriezener Bahnhof 10243 Berlin

Metro: S-Bahn Ostbahnhof

The House of Weekend: One of the most famous and elegant clubs in the city that offers a great panoramic view, also has a huge roof terrace. It is located on the upper floors of an old office building on Alexanderplatz.

Since the Weekend is a more elegant club, you should pay attention to the dress code, because the bouncer does.....

Panoramic windows line the bar in the center, offering stunning views of the Berlin cityscape. In the summer months, you can watch first the sea of lights from Berlin on the roof terrace and then the sunrise.

Address: Alexanderstr.7, 10178 Berlin

Metro: Underground/S-Bahn Alexanderplatz

Watergate: The Watergate Club is located in the middle of Kreuzberg. It has two levels, and the lower dance floor, called Waterfloor, is spectacular. It has a wide floor-to-ceiling glass front overlooking the Spree River and an illuminated bridge - you feel like you're dancing on water. The upper level is known for its LED lighting panels that run the length of the top floor.

International DJs spin house and techno.

The dress code here is kept very casual, but the door policy is all the stricter.

Address: Falckensteinstr 49, 10997 Berlin.

Metro: U1 Schlesisches Tor

Tresor: Tresor is a legendary institution. It was the city's first techno club and introduced electronic music to reunified Germany in the early 90s. In 2016, Tresor celebrated its 25th anniversary.

Housed in a former power plant, it plays acid, electronic, and industrial music at high volumes.

The bouncers are professional but fair.

Address: Köpenicker Strasse 70, 10179 Berlin Mitte.

Metro: U8 Heinrich-Heine-Strasse

Golden Gate: Located under Jannowitzbrücke, Golden Gate is one of Berlin's gnarliest clubs. The interior is small, dark, and largely devoid of decoration. It's known for having exceptionally long hours, even for Berlin; most weeks there's a Thursday night party that ends Friday afternoon, then a second one that starts at midnight on Friday and lasts until Monday morning.

Berlin DJs spin up-front tech house, and the door policy is loose.

Address: Schicklerstraße 4, 10179 Berlin

Metro: S-Bahn Jannowitzbrücke

Popular Shows, Bars & Dinners in Berlin

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