December is a great time to visit Berlin. Even though the days are getting shorter and you need to bundle up, there are still plenty of things to do and many sights to see. Early December can offer great deals on hotels or show/theatre tickets. December is also the month when you can indulge in the Holiday spirit of mulled wine, Christmas markets, lit-up trees and many more things this city has to offer. We compiled our things to do during the month of December; with a focus on Christmas events as well as inside activities to keep your toes warm.
Christmas markets in Berlin
A visit to the Christmas market is a family-friendly and technically free thing to do in December. Berlin probably has more than a 100 big and small Christmas or winter markets of different types all over the city offering mulled wine, winter food like creamed mushrooms or kale and sausage stews. Depending on where you are staying, you’ll have the choice of which Christmas market in Berlin you might want to visit. If you are into exquisite sweets and craftsmanship, the beautiful market at Gendarmenmarkt might be your cup of tea. If you like action and enjoy roller coaster rides, the Christmas market near the Alexa shopping center near Alexanderplatz would be a great choice, just to name a few. You might even like to take a Christmas Markets walking tour (GetYourGuide).
Christmas Circus (December 16-February)
If you’ve ever been to a circus as a child, you can imagine the amazed eyes of the little and big guests, when the circus has a Christmas focus. Horses, artistic stunts and entertainment for the whole family during the holiday season. At Tempodrom near Anhalter Bahnhof. Tickets start at 28 euros.
Christmas Garden at the Botanical Garden
For a magical walk through a holiday lights-lit garden, check out the Christmas Garden at the Botanical Garden. Located at Königin Louise Str 6-8, near S-train stop Botanischer Garten (S1) or U-train station Breitenbachplatz (U2,U3). Open 4pm-10pm. Tickets start at 17 euros and are available online.
Christmas brunch and boat tour
Celebrate the advents season with a lovely brunch on a boat while exploring the waterways of Berlin. Tickets are still available for December 3 and 17. Boats depart at the Treptow Harbor, Pushkinstrasse 15.
There are several ice skating rinks all over the city, with the most popular ones at the Neptunbrunnen (near Alexanderplatz) and Potsdamer Platz. Ice skates can be rented for 2.50 euros.
Rent a slide
Go sliding in the snow. Once the snows sticks around, find the nearest park with a nice hill. Volkspark Friedrichshain, Victoria Park and Teufelsberg are popular locations to take a slide ride. You can even rent a slide at several locations in Mitte, Prenzlauer Berg, and Kreuzberg.
Enjoy some oriental tea
Make yourself comfortable on your pillow with some spiced tea and listen to the stories and fairy tales at the Tajik Teehouse (Oranienburger Str. 27, 10117 Berlin – Mitte) weekdays 4-11pm, weekends 12-11pm, fairy tales (in German) on Mondays 7:30 pm, 9 euros during story time, otherwise free entry.
Pamper yourself at the Turkish Bath and Spa at Sultan Haman. There is nothing better than to enjoy a warm bath, sauna, a massage or peeling during the colder months. Located at Bülowstraße 56-57, 10783 Berlin. Opening hours mostly addressed to women; men’s day on Monday afternoons.
Movies at Cinestar Potsdamer Platz
This movie theatre in Berlin offers movies in English, so for the native-English speakers among you, this is your best chance of finding a movie in your mother tongue. Just look for the movies that are marked with OV (original version).
Take a local brewery tour
Why not take a Brewery tour of Berlin’s local brew. English language brewery tour reservations can be made via email only please: firstname.lastname@example.org. The fee is 7 euros, Mon-Thu, 2 pm and 5:30 pm, Indira-Gandhi-Str. 66-69, 13053 Berlin.
Visit the Dussmann bookstore
If you are looking for a good read or just want to browse and warm up, the Dussmann bookstore offers a wide range of literature, books, CDs, and more over 3 levels. Bookworms will have a blast, and the best of all is, this store is open late (until midnight on weekdays, and 23:30 pm on Saturdays). A cozy coffee shop/ restaurant is attached. The store is located near S-train station Friedrichstrasse.
Take a Dance lesson
Dance classes and music concerts at Clärchen’s Ballroom. Location is at Auguststrasse 24, near Oranienburger Strasse.
Art of Banksy Exhibit (until Dec.30th)
If you are into street art, the name Banksy is no mystery to you. This anonymous British street artist who is known for his satire work that’s critical of politics and social norms has spread his work all over the city and the world. His work is not for sale, but you can visit the exhibition until the end of the year at the Felix/Adlon, Behrenstrasse 72, near Brandenburg Gate. 13 Euros. You can purchase your tickets, here. You might also be interested in our self-guided Berlin Graffiti and Street Art tour.
Harlem Gospel Choir
What better and more spiritual way than to welcome the Christmas season by rhythmically snapping your fingers, hum along with a song, clap your hands and enjoying a wonderful Gospel performance of the Harlem Gospel Choir. Performances take place Fridays and Saturdays at the Apostel Paulus Church near U-train station Eisenacher Str. (U7 train). Tickets are available for purchase here.
“Swing in den Advent” mit Brass Band Berlin
Another catchy music performance during Advent season is the Swing into the Advent Brassband concert at the Philharmonie concert hall, near Potsdamer Platz. They only perform one day, on December 2nd. Some tickets are still available.
Baroch Christmas Gala