At a recent trip to Berlin, I was pleasantly surprised to see so many climate conscious options (say that 10 times fast!) available across the city. Not to mention the amazing vibe and friendly people.
From the moment we landed, we were met with taxi drivers chauffeuring around in electric cars, trains, buses, electric bikes, and scooters. Safe to say it was easy to get around the city if you didn’t fancy a walk. And before you say anything, yes, we flew, but we don’t travel often, not having much spare cash these days, we have spent most of our family down-time staycationing in Blighty! Let’s hope the airlines fast-track their sustainable fuel soon!
Being thirsty from our journey we entered a quint café in East Side Berlin, who were offering free water refills and discounts on those using their own travel mug – yay to championing the reduction of single use plastics and disposable items.
Whilst we were in the East Side, we took a stroll along the East Side Gallery, and it was amazing to see such a diverse array of street art. There were lots of climate care and kindness messages which was uplifting to see too, turning something with horrible roots into a platform for spreading positive messages.
That was something else we noticed, everywhere we looked, on the side of buildings, graffiti, interiors of shops, pubs and bars, were positive messages of hope and kindness. I’m not going to talk about the city’s past, but it seemed to me that they have been able to ‘own’ the darker sides of history and create a positive narrative.
The food was great, and whilst we didn’t get to go to FREA (Free Taste Zero Waste) restaurant on Torstrasse in Mitte, this is something I’m going to do on my next visit. I wished we’d explored more of the flea markets in the quirky plazas too. There’s some great vintage finds out there, all showcasing retro clothing and products, you don’t have to buy everything new! I would recommend visiting the zero-waste mall too located in the Berliner Stadtreinigung. Don’t worry I won’t bore you with our tourist hotspot itinerary!
Whilst we went in the winter, and boy it was cold, the lights of the city and warm mulled wine soon warmed us up - but I’d love to go back in the spring and explore what the parks have on offer.
My takeaway from Berlin – it’s a quirky, vibrant city, with lots on offer, particularly for those with a climate conscious mind, and it’s well worth a visit. We will definitely be heading back there to explore more of what’s on offer.
Bye for now,
(Fair Oak & Horton Heath Parish Clerk)