Living like a local has become a trendy phrase recently in the travel industry. Trendy or not, I certainly feel like a local when I’m on the underground at 7am on my way to work! As a business traveler who often attends conferences in cities around the world, the last thing I want to do when on a business trip is come “home” to a cramped hotel room where I need to try to set up office. The comforts of home and a spacious apartment make it so much easier to work while traveling without distractions. So just how do you live like a local in Berlin? Here are our recommendations:
Rent a Holiday Apartment
I was sharing a huge two bedroom Go With Oh apartment with my friend Laurel from Monkeys and Mountains. We pushed open the door to our home for the next week to reveal a huge living room with antique stove and high ceilings. Ah, this would certainly be a relaxing space to come “home” to after hectic days networking and running around a conference center. It’s important to both of us that we have reliable internet when traveling so that we can both get work done. Our holiday apartment hosts had left the wifi code and a helpful little guide to the neighborhood coffee shops, grocery store, and restaurants for us.
There was a full kitchen with tea kettle, microwave, oven, and even a washing machine! The living room was a cozy place for us to hang out and we even had friends over one evening. We each had plenty of space to set up our computers and get work done. I know I certainly felt like a local as I headed off to work each day.
Ride Public Transportation
I felt like a local from the moment my plane landed in Berlin as I grabbed my little roller bag and navigated the Berlin subways and underground to my Go With Oh apartment in the Schöneberg district. With the help of the Berlin Subway app for iPhone, location services helped me locate the closed U-Bahn or S-Bahn stop and plan my route to the stop I needed to get to. I easily got all around Berlin using public transportation and felt like a local as a few tourists asked for directions. And I really felt like a local when my friend Peter Parkorr hopped on the S-Bahn. How often do you run into people you know in other cities?!
Ask the Locals for Restaurant Recommendations
Berlin reminds me a lot of New York City. Just about any type of cuisine can be found in the city and choosing a great restaurant can feel like a daunting task! Ask the locals for restaurant recommendations. We did and certainly weren’t disappointed.
Just around the corner from our apartment was Ratana, a Thai restaurant. We loved our red curry: duck with lychees and peppers for me and beef with peppers for Tim. The true test though was that Laurel had lived in Thailand for a while and she proclaimed it good Thai food.
Another great recommendation we got was for the German restaurant Maximilian’s, just off the tourist path and around the corner from Checkpoint Charlie. Try the homemade goulash soup and the meatloaf baked with Camembert and spicy-sweet Munich mustard.
Currywurst is the staple Berlin fast food. It’s a steamed sausage that is then fried and cut up; it’s served with ketchup and curry powder and is served with a roll. I had currywurst a few times as a quick breakfast standing around a tiny table while waiting to change trains, just like the other Berliners on their way to work. My favorite currywurst stand was located at the Zoologischer Garten S-Bahn stop.
Want to win your own chance to live like a local in Berlin? Check out the Living La Vida Local contest!
Thank you to Go With Oh for hosting us and letting us live like a local in Berlin! As always, all opinions are our own.