Friday, 22 March 2019

Welcome to Expat Mummy in Berlin

Welcome to Expat Mummy in Berlin.

I wrote this blog from 2012 to 2013 but all the current content is still relevant for people moving to Berlin with young children now some six years later. I hope you find it useful! All the headings above will help you find what you need on this website!

I currently live in Copenhagen and I have a popular and informative blog about life there called Dejlige Days {you can find it here}

Also if you have just relocated to Berlin or are planning to in the future my book "My Guide to a Successful Relocation" will be a great help. You can buy it here.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

DDR Museum

This museum has been on my list of places to visit for a while and I am delighted that we made it. We arrived when it opened at 10am which was a good move as it got very busy later on. My son enjoys museums but I don't think he has spent over three hours in one before and I think he would have stayed longer.

This is the ultimate hands on museum, everything there is for you to look at, touch and really experience.

The biggest draw for him was the Trabant that you could sit in and drive whilst watching a video of a DDR housing estate. I think we went back to this car about twenty times.

The presentation of the main exhibits is a representation of DDR prefab housing blocks.

There are drawers to open that hold real things from the era and in many cases you can get them out and touch them.

I loved this construction toy which allowed children in East Berlin to build their own prefab structure.

This drawer delighted my son - it is a DDR apartment in miniature.

And there is a life size one too. Again you can open all the cupboards, watch the TV, pick up the phone and really immerse yourself in the East German experience.

There is a lot of mixed media dotted around - listening posts (in German) of contemporary broadcasts, video screens and a little screening room running short films (again in German).

My son loved typing on this portable typewriter (which was almost identical to one I had when I was about nine).

They have used a lot of new technology in the museum to keep it interesting - above is the desk in the Party office and each item, when placed on the hidden screen on the desk, pops up an interactive screen.

There were a number of school parties in the museum when we were there and I have never seen so many young people really engaging with a historical exhibit.

The museum explores all aspects of DDR life from recreation, lifestyle, food and other consumer items, political life, prison - the list goes on. If you take time to read everything you will go away knowing all you want to about life in East Germany/Berlin and if, like me, you were enjoying through a child's eyes, they have a great book you can purchase which follows all the information in the museum.

This is the notice that greets you when you arrive and it really lives up to it. If you only visit one museum in Berlin make it this one!

Address: Karl-Liebknecht-Strasse 1, 10178 Berlin

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Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Buchlokal, Pankow

If you live in Pankow and can enjoy books in German, this little bookshop is a complete delight. The atmosphere is lovely, they have a small seating area and a coffee machine and staff are really helpful and friendly.

The children's section at the back is beautifully set out with book shelves spelling Lesen (read) in German.

Their window display is always seasonal or topical and they have regular author readings both for adults and children. A lovely place.


Address: Ossietzkystraße 10, 13187 Berlin

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Monday, 5 November 2012

Playground at Hornstrasse, Kreuzberg

This is a great little playground in the central square on Hornstrasse. It is right across the road from Cafe Kreuzzwerg so perfect for a bit of a run about before enjoy their waffles.

It has swings, slide, climbing tower and a zip line so is suitable for various ages.

Address: Hornstrasse, 10963 Berlin

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Monday, 29 October 2012

Cha Cha

I have walked past Cha Cha, a Thai restaurant, in the centre of the city a number of times and am always struck by its likeness to Wagamama's. There is bench style dining and also they have a similar tagline of 'positive eating'. My son and I were in the city so we decided to have lunch here. It can get very busy later on during the lunch period but when we arrived at 12 it was almost empty.

Once we had looked at the menu, I realised that it isn't a Wagamama rip off but an interesting Thai eating experience. Almost all of the dishes come in a large or small portion, which I like both from the point of view of eating with children and general lunchtime dining. 

There is a great children's menu (below is my son's choice) and all the children's dishes come with either apple or mango juice. But as a lot of the menu comes in smaller sizes, it is a great place to take children with a more adventurous palate. I was also impressed that the waitress advised me that I had ordered too much for us with the portion sizes.

I found the restaurant very family friendly and an enjoyable experience.

Address: Friedrichstrasse 63, 10117 Berlin

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Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Akazienstrasse and surrounding area, Schöneberg

I had the chance to explore this area of Schöneberg and discovered a few interesting shops and places along the way. This area is very close to Kids Corner and worth a wander if you are there.

There seem to be a large selection of hippie type shops on this street. I can't say I saw anyone wearing this style of clothing but the shops are colourful and interesting to look at. There are lots of cafes, restaurants and wine shops along this street

On the crossroad of Grunewaldstrasse and Akazienstrasse there was a great little treasure trove of a toy shop called Kinder Sause.

Address: Grunewaldstrasse 16, 10823

As you continue over Grunewaldstrasse you enter Goltzstrasse with more shops and cafes.

I was delighted to find the Apfelgalerie, a shop selling a vast selection of apple varieties and at the right times of the year, season produce such as asparagus, strawberries, cherries, plums, pumpkins etc. It is a fantastic shop and reminds you of the importance of seasonal food. There is a great article about the shop on the Exberliner website

Address: Goltzstrasse 3, 10781 Berlin

At the end of Goltzstrasse is Winterfledplatz, which is the location for a twice weekly food market on Wednesday and Saturdays. More information here

It was great to see the Schöneberg branches (on Goltzstrasse) of Hobby Shop Wilhelm Ruther, which include the normal hobby shop, a bead and jewelry making shop and also a place where you can take thing to be fired.

I spotted this shop front of a place called Cafe Pink and after a bit of investigating discovered this is an intercultural meeting place for girls from age 10 to young women. This is their website if you are interested in the project.

There is a nice little playground about half way down Goltzstrasse.

Finally on Apostel Paulus Strasse there is a great secondhand and lovely handmade children's clothes and toy shop called Klix. It is the workshop for the Berlin label Glückstück.

Address: Apostel Paulus Strasse 1, 10823 Berlin

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Monday, 22 October 2012

Playground at Auguststrasse 5

This is a great little playground with a sort of pirate/wild west theme - I am not quite sure which but it made the usual fare of swings, slides and climbing frames a bit more interesting. The playground is located at the Friedrichstrasse end of Auguststrasse.

There was a wooden pirate hiding in the bushes.

Address: Auguststrasse 5, 10117 Berlin

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