The Ku'Damm (Kurfürstendamm)
Kurfürstendamm, Berlin, Germany
The Ku'Damm (Kurfürstendamm) Berlin Reviews
Shopping, Traditional Café Culture, Sightseeing - Berlin's Champs Élysées Aug 16, 2011
The Kurfürstendamm (generally referred to by locals, as the Ku’Damm) is the number one boulevard on the west-side of the City, in the district of Charlottenburg. It is lined with high-end shops, souvenir shops, red-carpet hotels and some very grand pavement establishments, such as the famous Café Kranzler. Passing such places, it is very hard to resist the temptation to indulge in the very German tradition of afternoon coffee and cake.
The Ku'Damm is famed for its numerous pavement cafés, and a stroll along here is a bit like strolling on a stage; it is very much a place to see and to be seen.
The Ku'Damm is, in my opinion, at its best in Summer when the trees, lining this enduringly popular thoroughfare, form a natural canopy, providing welcome shade and making a stroll along here all the more enjoyable. In winter, the trees are completely bare and look like they’ve be drawn in charcoal, so you get a completely different effect.
There are several elegant side streets just off the Ku’Damm, whose beautiful facades show-case expensive designer shops, and these are also worth a browse, if you have the time. The focal point of this luxury boulevard, however, is the bustling shoppers and tourist square of Breitscheidplatz, home to the Europa Centre and the Kaiser Wilhelm Gedächtniskirche. (watch out for pick-pockets here, due to the tourist crowds).
Just opposite the Gedächtniskirche, on the corner of Rankestrasse, there are hop-on/hop off tourist buses. You can buy tickets at the kiosk there: departures every 10-15 minutes. Tours last around 2 hours and covers 16 major sights, commentary available in 13 languages. You could spend the whole day touring, if you wanted to, as you can hop off to spend more time at some attractions and hop on at another stop to re-join the tour.
The Kurfürstendamm is also home to the night-club ‘Big Eden’, after the playboy who founded it, Rolf Eden. Today, it is meant to be quite sophisticated and well-to-do; unfortunately, I only know it from its less salubrious days, when it was not advisable to venture onto the dance floor. Wish I had known this at the time.
Marked free, as costs nothing to stroll up and down, but you are bound to spend money in the shops and cafés.
Part of the list Berlin - Beautiful, Beautiful Berlin
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