Schloss Charlottenburg – Berlin

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This weekends green trip was to Schloss Charlottenburg. I had been avoiding this as it is a major tourist attraction, but I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of peace and space we had when visiting.

Charlottenburg Palace was built at the end of the 17th century, commissioned by Sophie Charlotte who was the wife of the Elector of Brandenburg. It was heavily damaged during WWII, but has been renovated and now functions as a public space. Although entrance to the palace is 12 euro, anyone can enjoy the extensive gardens for free. Honestly, I recommend skipping the palace and saving yourself some money.

The gardens are split into formal and informal, the informal being much larger. You can easily walk around for 2 hours in this huge wild space, and although you will see joggers and sunbathers lounging around there are plenty of private nooks for those who need to escape the busy city.

For vegans making the trip, I highly recommend stopping at nearby Attila Hildmann on Schillerstraße 71 for incredible burgers and the best vegan ice cream I have ever had!

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Schloss Charlottenburg – Berlin

Beautiful Berlin: IGA 2017

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One of the many reasons I love Berlin so much is the abundance of free or inexpensive public events. IGA (Internationale Garten Ausstellung) is on the pricier side of this, but still pretty reasonable considering the scale of the event. This festival of gardening is spread across a 104-hectare site, in fact, it is so large they installed a gondola lift to transport visitors between the main areas!

There are many attractions, but the three we particularly loved were the Blumenhalle which housed a diverse collection of plants from all around the world. The “Promenade Aquatica” or water gardens were relaxing and gave us a very welcomed mist bath on a hot day, and the International Gardens, where you can find a Chinese tea house nestled into the woods.

There was also a gardeners market, and we came away full of inspiration for expanding and diversifying our own little urban jungle. I was pretty excited to see so many vertical gardening solutions. We have ordered our first ‘green wall’ and started buying plants for it, but it was nice to see a mature example in person.

I’m afraid of heights, so riding the gondola lift was pretty scary, but it’s important to do scary things sometimes. I was proud of myself for getting to the end without crying, and we even spotted some deer from overhead!

The only downside I can think of for this event was food. There weren’t really any vegan options. They did have a few vegetarian offers, but the staff was unable to confirm if they were milk/egg free. Sadly a mix of hunger and rain caused us to leave earlier than planned.

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Beautiful Berlin: IGA 2017

Vegan Eats: Tianfuzius, Berlin

On Sunday Jonathan and I went to Tianfuzius at Regensburger Str. 1, 10777 Berlin. As far as I can tell this is the only vegan Chinese restaurant in Berlin, and thankfully it is also extremely good! They have proper spicy Sichuan food bursting with flavor and some of the best service I have ever received in this country.

The menu is extensive and full of dishes I had never heard of before, made up not only of tofu or meat substitutes but also different kinds of vegetables. I had spicy potato noodles and a tofu and black bean dish with mochi rice balls for dessert. The food came quickly and everything tasted incredibly fresh.

The price is a little more than you might find at other German restaurants (I don’t know any Chinese restaurants to compare to) but for the quality, it’s more than reasonable. We had a 3-course meal for two people for under 50 EUR. Refills of tea and rice are free, which we really appreciated.

I would rate this restaurant a 10/10 – we can’t wait to go back!

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Vegan Eats: Tianfuzius, Berlin

Teufelsberg is open!

Teufelsberg (German for Devil’s Mountain) is a hill in Berlin and is in my top 5 recommended places to check out for people visiting the city. The hill, like all hills in Berlin which is a naturally flat area, is made up of the rubble from WWII. This one is extra special however as it also buries a never finished Nazi military-technical college. A perfectly good reason to name something “Devil’s”.

And that’s just the hill.

Teufelsberg’s main attraction is the abandoned US Cold War spy tower, which over the years has become a gallery of street art and squat activity. Up until April 2017 you had to climb a fence and watch out for guard dogs to admire the work, but recently they open the area up to visitors for an 8 EUR fee.  Much like Pfaueninsel this is extremely good value for money, and far more interesting that the usual tourist hot spots.

I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.

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Teufelsberg is open!

The Best Vegan Pho in Berlin

My partner and I love Vietnamese food, and nothing beats a bowl on hot Pho on a cold day. I decided to compile a list of my favorite places to grab a bowl in Berlin, not only because it was deliciously fun, but also because I had a few disappointing Pho trips before finding these gems so I thought I should share my experience!

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1. Cat Tuong – Kastanienallee 89, 10435 Berlin

Cat Tuong is a quite relaxed restaurant near the Mauerpark in beautiful Prenzlauer Berg. This is by far the best Pho broth I have ever tasted. I’ve consistently had great food and great service here, at a good price.

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2. Chen Che Teehaus – Rosenthaler Str. 13, 10119

I’m cheating here because the vegan soup they offer is not a traditional Pho, but extremely similar with a bit of extra spice. Chen Che is one of the most beautiful restaurants I have visited in Berlin. Although it is not all vegan the staff are knowledgeable about dietary needs and sensitivities. I highly recommend trying some of the huge selection of teas and the black rice and coconut pudding.

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3. Soy – Rosa-Luxemburg-Straße 30, 10178 Berlin

Probably the most well known all vegan Vietnamese places on my list, Soy is really accessible from Alexanderplatz. The food is incredibly tasty, and while it’s more expensive than some of the other choices on my list it is still very affordable compared to food prices in other major cities.

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4. 1990 Vegan Living – Krossener Straße 19, 10245

Located in trendy Friedrichshain, this is the most stylish restaurant. The food is tasty but not as flavorful as Cat Tuong or Soy. It’s still good food, but a more ‘westernized’ take.

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5. Zen House Vegetarian – Kantstr. 71 10627, Berlin

This cute little restaurant has high quality, delicious food at a very reasonable price. If you go for the Pho I highly recommend treating yourself to a few pieces of black rice sushi or some green tea ice cream as well!

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The Best Vegan Pho in Berlin