Talk:Berlin

From Wikivoyage
Jump to: navigation, search

Archived discussions

District allocation[edit]

Has there really been a strict separation of the districts and Bezirke ?

The Guide article Berlin e.g. allocates Tiergarten to the City West and Wedding to the North district articles, as do the maps. The City West-article does have content on Tiergarten, as does the Mitte-article, which claims (correctly) Tiergarten being now a part of the new Mitte-Stadtbezirk administratively. On the other hand Wedding, now part of Mitte-Stadtbezirk, too, is also mentioned in the Mitte-district article, but not in the North-district article, though it should be there (or not ?). However this is in contradiction with the allocations given in the Berlin-article. --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 12:50, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

No, there really has never been in recent years "a strict separation of the districts and Bezirke" ?
Fortunately I have a strong suspicion that you understand German (and French!) so you might want (or not want) to take your cue from our German version, AnhaltER1960. I'd give you a hand but I already have enough on my plate with more than a thousand articles on my watchlist and going into hospital in the next 7 days... It's dreadful hitchhiking in France isn't it - especially in the South! --W. Frankemailtalk 17:44, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
The German article, thorough as we Germans are, dissects Berlin into more than 80 articles (without being able to fill them). Much overdone and therefor I do not see it as an example. I agree that a subdivision of Berlin into roundabout six districts is okay and am happy with either solution. Just want it done properly. Greetings --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 23:18, 11 October 2013 (UTC) Btw, my hitchhiking memories to France, the south better than the north, are not that bad - but 30 years old :-)
I am very happy to hear that not only do I have this uneasiness about the current division of districts in the guide. I specifically find it unnatural and pointless for Tiergarten to be separated from the rest of Mitte. I do not believe this is a problem because it does not follow the administrative division, but because it makes writing a guide to both central Berlin and outer West Berlin (now confusingly named "City West", what's so "city" about Gruenewald???) very difficult.
On the one hand, we have the Reichstag area covered in both articles, on the other, going west of Potsdamer Platz requires one to switch to another guide (when one can easily do that by foot and there is a natural flow of attractions and sights along the way). Furthermore, an article that tries to cover the densely-packed attractions of the Tiergarten area with the widely-spaced ones of the outer districts is also hard to write in a coherent manner, not to mention that the map would be unusable for the crucial Tiergarten area when it would include all the POIs in the outer districts.
Do you share my uneasiness on that and would agree that Tiergarten should be included in the Mitte article? PrinceGloria (talk) 07:36, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
PS. W. Frank, whatever brings you to the hospital, I hope you will be back soon and all well!
The Article Berlin/City West, starting with a picture showing Potsdamer Platz, actually located in Mitte, demonstrates the fuzz just by this.... Tiergarten can stand for the former borough (until 2001) as one in twenty boroughs, for a subdivision of Mitte as from 2001 or for the park itself. So, if you specify your understanding of TiergartenI will comment. I understand that from a tourist point of view putting Brandenburg Gate and the Reichtsag or Potsdamer Platz and Culture Forum, being on the same walking routes, into two different articles is not good. I opened a similar debate at wikitravel] with its very similar article and neglecting any debate on who cloned whom and proposed three alternatives: Leave things as they are (Mitte seperate article, Tiergarten to City/West, Wedding to North; just doing it properly OR merge Tiergarten and Wedding to Mitte to follow administrative borders OR put the eastern parts of Tiergarten adjacent to Mitte to the Mitte article and leave the other parts of Tiergarten (I am talking about boroughs in their former (until 2001) meaning) in City/West and Wedding in North. There are pros and cons to any of the alternatives. I just would prefer a strict handling of whatever the result will be. --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 11:24, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
PS - join in on the wishes to Frank.
I am sorry, I forgot I need to be more precise when speaking of Germany - I did mean the Ortsteil of the Bezirk Mitte. I don't quite believe in using outdated administrative divisions anywhere on WV, this is just confusing, and I do prefer to follow the official borders whenever reasonable for consistency and easier orientation for the tourist.--PrinceGloria (talk)
Actual administrative inner-city borders in most cities are signpostings at some suburb crossroads, can have some statistical importance or determine which pharmacy does the sunday emergency job. Only in rare cases, and Berlin is one, turn of history carves out inner-city borders to fronts af a (cold) war. Therefore I see "outdated" inner-city borders of high touristic importance in Berlin, most tourists want to know on which side of the wall they are. I see the point of consistency within the project though. Coming down to Tiergarten, this Ortsteil reaches as far as Zoological Garten and Lützow Square - for my taste way too far into City West to be regarded as Mitte. Regards --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 22:52, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
I don't think we have any consistency with regards to using administrative borders as district borders within the city. It is just my personal preference, as the official districts do not only ease navigation, but they are also usually arranged as they are for some reason. It is always very hard to draw a line between districts, so with so many possibilities, why not use the official ones, especially in the cities where the districts are easily identifiable, mentioned on signage and when addressing etc. Paris and Vienna are prime examples of where official districts are very useful, mostly because they haven't changed for ages.
I am not sure where Berlin is on that, but I'd be most wary of introducing the "old district" concept to a city where current districts have the same names and it will all become very confusing to everybody but the true Berlin history buffs who will take time to research the past administrative divisions of Berlin. I can still firmly remember the evolutions of the administrative divisions of my home town, and I still strongly feel some places belong to localities that administratively no longer exist or ones that never did, but me and my folks "know where they are", but I wouldn't offer that to a tourist, that would confuse them.
I would want some information on where the Berlin Wall was, but this is secondary to having a good walking and orientation map of an area I can navigate on foot. I guess whenever we have a dynamic map of the centre ready, we can add a "path" showing the location of the wall. Other divisions (i.e. administrative divisions WITHIN former West Berlin and East Berlin respectively) seem quite irrelevant to me, only the wall/national border has much significance.
AT ANY RATE, where should we draw the line then? I guess we need articles or at least maps for:
  1. The very centre of Berlin that you can walk on foot through, which to me includes the Spreebogen area with the Hbf and Bundesregierung buildings, the Brandenburger Tor, Unter den Linden, Museum Island, Checkpoint Charlie and the Potsdamer Platz area. I don't know if this follows any official or historic borders, but I am tempted to say I would disregard them if it does not.
  2. West Berlin beyond the Tiergarten park - Ku'damm, KaDeWe, Zoo and perhaps Grosser Stern. If the density of attractions we want to highlight on the map is scarcer than in the city centre, I could see us adding the Schloss Charlottenburg and perhaps other outlying attractions, but nothing outside of the Stadtring, otherwise it would make the article impractical for use for navigation
  3. All of the other attractions in the West IMHO belong to a separate article, because they are spaced farther away and each of them, or a cluster of them, requires a longer journey from the centre and you cannot really pack them into one manageable walk. Moreover, showing them on the same map as the "City West" would result in an indecipherable mess in the centre.
So, in short, I would move some stuff from "City West" to "City Centre" (let's not call it "Mitte", if it really isn't Mitte), some to a separate "West" or even common "outlying attractions" article (if there isn't much to be seen in the outer West, East, North and South, why not combine the articles), and leave the City West as the area that is within the Stadtring but not covered by the City Centre article. The exact border is of lesser importance, we just need a map to show where the tourist should switch to another article, and if the line will run through an area where there isn't much (e.g. through the middle of the Tiergarten park and some residential quarters of lesser importance), it will be very easy to comprehend.
What do you think of the above (and let's not get involved in discussing the importance of historic districts but rather come up with a proposal to re-districtify the article)? PrinceGloria (talk) 05:57, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
"because they haven't changed for ages." That is exactly the point, which makes the difference to other places. Administrative reshuffling of borders is a speciality esp. in eastern Germany, sometimes with half times down to six/eight years. But back to Berlin: I agree with the walking area idea. This would be adding eastern parts of Moabit/Tiergarten to the Berlin/Mitte, drawing the line roughly along B 96 (putting Hamburger Bahnhof, Hauptbahnhof, Chancellor Residence, former Congress Hall (pregnant oyster), Reichstag, Soviet War Memorial to Mitte). Also, to avoid the triple point at Potsdamer Platz (whrere Mitte, Tiergarten and Kreuzberg meet (or the Berlin/Mitte, Berlin/City West, and Berlin/East Central-articles here) I would suggest to add the Culture forum with Philharmony, Mies van-der-Rohe's New National Gallery, and the Prussian State Library and so on to the Mitte-article. City/West, i do agree there is a natural limit at the S-Bahn-/Motorway-Ring. Means, we need a new place for Funkturm, ICC, Olympic Stadium and a few other places. An idea would be to create a new Berlin/West-article with western Charlottenburg (Ortsteile Westend and Grunewald) plus take Spandau from Berlin/North-article (and Spandau is not really "North" anyway). Giving in total seven Berlin district-articles, four articles for the outer suburbs (East, North, West and South) plus two articles with more central urban centres (East Central and City West) and one for the historical center (Mitte). I consider this appropriate for the size of the city, also in comparison with other european metropoles. Regards --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 18:49, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
I think we basically agree, even if I am unsure of some of the outliers (e.g. the "Soviet War Memorial", if you mean the one in Treptower Park, which to me feels detached from the naturally walkable area of Mitte). I also believe you have a much better grasp of Berlin's geography and a much clearer idea as to where to draw the borders - do you believe you could visualize your idea e.g. using Google Maps (the best would be to use our Wikivoyage Maps, but I don't know of a tool that allows to easily draw borders and such for those), so that we could show to it to the large community and ask for approval? PrinceGloria (talk) 21:39, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
Just for the clarity: I am talking about the Soviet War Memorial on Strasse des 17. Juni, not the one in Treptow. It is not mentioned in any article here yet. Vizualising ? Cant promise anything, will try. Regards --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 22:30, 14 October 2013 (UTC) ... first attempt failed gloriously. --AnhaltER1960 (talk) 17:34, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for your best wishes, gentlemen. It's nothing dramatic - just the usual diseases of old age, but if the surgeries mean I can get "parole" after effectively being under house arrest for some while (there's no lift in my 1857 Glasgow tenement and my flat is on the top floor) it will be well worth it. It's turned cold here lately and they have just increased my gas prices by 11%, so I may try and catch one of the more popular hospital infections to prolong my stay and save on the winter bills. I'm actually quite looking forward to the companionship. It looks like this article will be in very good hands while I am away! --W. Frankemailtalk 16:40, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Please do not catch anything Frank, come back soon and in good health and I am sure you will be better off that way, gas prices and whatnot notwithstanding. You are needed here! PrinceGloria (talk) 04:55, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

This is definitely a mess at the moment! We have points of interest within Tiergarten, that are described either in "Mitte" or "City West". I am going to add Tiergarten district to "Mitte" now and move all relevant elements from "City West" to "Mitte".--Renek78 (talk) 12:51, 4 May 2017 (UTC)

"Frequent"?[edit]

What do you think this means, in "Get around/By tram"? "Metrotrams frequent more often as well as by night." Frequent what? Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:21, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Alternative banner for this article?[edit]

old banner currently used in this article
suggested new banner (which is currently used in the parallel article in the Hebrew Wikivoyage)

In the Hebrew Wikivoyage we are currently using this banner instead of the one which is currently used here. Do you think too that this banner would would better than the existing one? ויקיג'אנקי (talk) 01:50, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

The new banner is fine, but I think this is one of the best banners on the site. How do you get more emblematic of Berlin than the part of the Reichstag with the "Dem deutschen Volke" sign? Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:16, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Even without knowing Berlin at all, I think the current banner is much more striking than just another skyline shot. Texugo (talk) 02:22, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
The main thing going for the proposed banner is the inclusion of Alexandraplatz in the middle. That said, the existing banner is similarly iconic as the Statue of Liberty is for New York. I would keep the existing banner. Andrewssi2 (talk) 06:31, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
The banner used by hebrew.voy is very similar to the one used for Berlin/Mitte here at en.voy. I'd say it's more of a Mitte banner than Berlin banner. PrinceGloria (talk) 18:30, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Agree with the above - maybe consider it for Mitte, but the current one is amongst the best on WV in my opinion. --Nick talk 19:23, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
I like the current banner for Mitte better than this one, as it features pretty, iconic buildings. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:37, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
I like the current banner. It shows an image which is symbolic of the changes to Berlin with the parliament moving back to the Reichstag (from Bonn). I am undecided about using the new one Mitte - curiously both it and the current Mitte banner use photos taken on the same day. AlasdairW (talk) 22:14, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
Having looked more closely at Mitte, I think I too prefer the present banner. --Nick talk 22:36, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
Prefer present banner Matroc (talk) 03:09, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
As a general rule I have nothing against cityscapes but in this case it is nothing special. The present banner reflects the city better. When you are in Berlin you are in the city close up to building, distant views, although there are some, are less typical. --Traveler100 (talk) 06:39, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

University listings[edit]

There are four university listings in this article, and they do not appear to be traveler relevant. It is possible that they are worth visiting from a historical or architecure perspective, however the content does not point to that. Can anyone suggest why this should be kept? Andrewssi2 (talk) 08:41, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

It can be useful to know what universities are in a city, and where:
    • Student areas often have a distinct character - cheap places to eat etc.
    • Student accommodation may be available during the vacations.
    • Short (1 week or so) courses may be run - these might interest a traveller.
    • Travellers who are students or staff at home may be able arrange to use some university facilities. AlasdairW (talk) 12:19, 25 May 2014 (UTC)
For the most part that doesn't justify a university listing. 'cheap places to eat' go in the 'eat' section. 'Student accomadation' goes in the 'Sleep' section. 'arrange to use some university facilities' is ambiguous and probably not actually travel related.
The 'Learn' section is for the point number 3, 'short courses, which may be listed. I do not see any of these under Berlin however. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 14:09, 26 May 2014 (UTC)
I placed the universities in an infobox, which maintains the overview whilst proving space for actual courses that travelers can participate in. Andrewssi2 (talk) 01:44, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Exactly. University canteens go into Eat and student houses converted into hotels for the summer goes into Sleep. If the university building is impressive/houses a museum etc., then that's a See entry. Basics about studying in the country in the country's Learn section. And the city's Learn section is for short courses that you can take as a tourist (language classes, lessons in the local culture etc.) with a duration up to a couple of weeks. We should not have degree programmes listed here. ϒpsilon (talk) 04:28, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
Berlin districtification proposal.png

Rebooting districts[edit]

I think we're halfway there now, and I would like to propose the following:

  • Berlin/City West is limited to what fits in the district map as it is framed at the moment of writing
  • Ortsteile (and not Bezirke) Kreuzberg, Tempelhof, Alt-Treptow, Neukoelln and Alt-Planterwald form a new district called South, or however you please.
  • Friedrichshein, Prenzlauer Berg and perhaps (to be discussed) some other parts of other Ortsteile form the new Berlin/East Central
  • Everything else in the current districts Berlin/South, Berlin/North and Berlin/East goes into a common district article called Berlin/Outer districts or however else you please.

What do you guys make of it? PrinceGloria (talk) 17:15, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

As per request of User:Ikan Kekek made in a private conversation, I am adding a map. This is a very low-quality rush job in PPT, but I hope you can make it out. Everything that is not shaded (i.e. the yellowish area) is to go into Berlin/Outer districts. PrinceGloria (talk) 17:59, 15 June 2014 (UTC)
Thanks a lot. As I said on my talk page, I am nowhere close to an expert on Berlin. That said, I'm wondering if this isn't a bit radical. Is it possible that a few more neighborhoods should be included in something other than "Outer districts"? I'm wondering about neighborhoods like Gesundbrunnen, Wedding, and some of the others that are easily accessible by the Ringbahn (though I guess the Ringbahn itself is arguably "outer"). I'd be particularly interested in hearing the views of people who either live in Berlin or have wide experience in the different neighborhoods, as I've spent most of my time in Berlin so far in Charlottenburg, Mitte, and Stralau. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:54, 15 June 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for chipping in! Now, if by "Ringbahn" you mean the Stadtbahn Ringbahn, pretty much all districts lying within it are included. The exception are the Ortsteile north of Ortsteil Mitte, like Gesundbrunnen or Wedding, and this is because I did not find them to possess many POIs of interest to travellers (actually, my guess is that they possess next to no such POIs), this is why there is no "Northern" district corresponding to the West, South and East I propose. Do correct me if I am wrong. And even if I am and we still decide not to make the "North" district out of the abovementioned, and later Berliners and people more knowledgeable than us correct our mistake, we can alway add that district once POIs crop up.
Regarding the "radical" impression you get, I guess it is good to bear in mind that Berlin, as a separate Bundesland, is, at 900 sqm by far larger than most other European capitals and large cities (most are between 100 and 300 sqm) because what elsewhere would be suburbs in separate municipalities are included in the administrative borders of the city. This is why the yellow "outer" space looks so massive in this map. I still don't think it contains many POIs and they can easily be collapsed into one article that is still useful to the traveller.
If nobody else would join the discussion for some time, would you be OK with proceeding as proposed? PrinceGloria (talk) 03:25, 16 June 2014 (UTC)
No, not really, because I'm not sure all efforts have been made yet to encourage participation in this thread. Has this been posted to Requests for comment? It also might be good to post to de.wikivoyage's Berlin talk page, especially if someone can post in German and mention the differences between the division of Berlin in en.wikivoyage vs. de.wikivoyage. Note please that their division of Berlin is certainly radically different than your proposed division: They divide it into 12 Bezirke, further noting which Ortsteile each of those is divided into. Their overall Berlin article is a Guide, but all the Bezirke articles are classed either as Stubs or Outlines. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:48, 16 June 2014 (UTC)
I posted to Requests for Comment. I can't read German well enough to really follow the discussion at Berlin:Strukturierung and Berlin:Strukturierung 2, but those discussions are clearly relevant to this one. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:55, 16 June 2014 (UTC)
I may read those if I have too much time, but whatever they discussed, they arrived at a situation where pretty much EVERY ORTSTEIL has its own article (mostly empty for areas like Gesundbrunnen), which is to a large extent a copy from Wikipedia with less detail, and some areas within Ortsteile still, like Potsdamer Platz, have their own articles. In short, I find what de.voy made of Berlin a mess and wouldn't go by that at all. PrinceGloria (talk) 04:21, 16 June 2014 (UTC)
I'm not suggesting we follow their lead. Perhaps they'd like to follow ours, instead. But either way, it would be interesting to hear their views and apprise them of this discussion. Ikan Kekek (talk) 05:07, 16 June 2014 (UTC)
I'm generally against huge bagel-like outer district articles, they're not very useful. I'd leave at least the North/South division. Jjtkk (talk) 15:20, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
Well, huge districts are hardly useful however we slice them, the POIs in outer Berlin are simply too far away from each other to provide for a reasonable districtification in the strictest sense. We just need repositories for POIs that do not fall in the POI-dense districts. I am OK with splitting the Outer Districts into two halves North-South or East-West. I will need to take a look which makes more sense POI-wise, bear with me. PrinceGloria (talk) 16:52, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
OK, we haven't really moved forward since July, and the German Wikivoyage didn't either, they still have the division mirroring the official one, which leads to 95 small articles, some still not created, and most clearly underdeveloped. This also adds the middle level of Bezirke before going to Ortsteile. There are many agreements against it there, but the discussion seems inactive and no consensus has been reached or any changes made.
Therefore, I will proceed with building a test version of the Berlin/South Centre article for you to see whether it works for you. We can then work on a solution to handle the "bagel". PrinceGloria (talk) 21:37, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
I object to this. Bagel-like districts are rarely good, and here especially not. The current districts represent cultural areas within the city. Kreuzberg and Friedrichshahn especially go well together, so I question why Kreuzberg would need to be cut off and merged with a pretty random district created in the south. I'm not sure why these changes are necessary or how they improve the article in any way. It took years and lots of work to get to the current districts, and I think they do well. Globe-trotter (talk) 00:49, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
From my point of view as a tourist, Kreuzberg and Friedrischshain seemed anything but continuous. There is the singular bridge that connects them, and both sides felt different to me. Sure there is a bit of counterculture and such, but then I felt this all around Berlin. From the point of view of transportation and everything else, the cohesion is nonexistent - the only U-Bahn line that connects them ends right after the bridge. For a Berliner, they may be thought of as a common entity. For a tourist, they are not - visiting anything else in East Berlin is easier together with Friedrichshein, and the East German heritage is easy to sense everywhere, while Kreuzberg blends in quite seamlessly with Neukoelln.
My friends who recommended me stuff to see and do in Berlin were quite surprised - and so was I - when I told them of the administrative division of Berlin. Nobody felt like Kreuzberg, with its old buildings and 19th-century structure, belonged with Friedrichshein, which to tourists is first and foremost the stalinist Karl-Marx-Allee. Sure there are clubs in both, but they're everywhere in Berlin.
In short, trying to use our guides in Berlin as a tourist, I found them not to work at all. City West covers far too large an area, and there is nothing practical about grouping South, North and East together - the POIs are spread too far apart to make grouping them serve any point. For me, they all fall into one category - if you have the time, choose a POI of interest to travel to, as most of them cannot be conveniently visited together (and if any can, those are groups of two-three, not enough for an article). PrinceGloria (talk) 06:32, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
I want to bring this up again.
I'm quite new here and am reading - out of curiosity - the Berlin pages of the german and english version. I'm unhappy with both solutions, the german version is too detailed (the Ortsteile are often simply too small to fill an article - I couldn't write any interesting about Johannisthal and I live there!), the english version lacks detail. Especially "Berlin South" - the problem is already mentioned in the article.
I'm fine with "city west", the term is used in germany sometimes as well and "Mitte". For the rest of Berlin I would prefer an own page for each Bezirk from the time when there were 23 of them. Probably with the exception of Marzahn-Hellersdorf, as these don't differ very much and have only few "highlights".--Ichbins berlin (talk) 19:31, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I do not think we have enough content for 23 articles, it would be confusing for the reader anyway to have to figure out which districts they might want to visit out of 23. I would suggest carving out Prenzlauer Berg out of the "East" bagel. PrinceGloria (talk) 20:03, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
It won't be 23 but 19, if we use City-West and Marzahn-Hellersdorf. I see a few problems with the current districts:
They just don't fit: Berlin South: Zehlendorf is one of the wealthiest districts of Berlin, Neukölln one of the poorest with many immigrants and a high density, Köpenick the greenest and the one with the lowest density and contrary to the other two part of the former GDR.
Geography; although Berlin has a quite good public transport network, you can't get from Zehlendorf to Köpenick that fast.
If there are not much points of interest in a specific area the reader should know about that. I don't think it's that bad to have pages with few content, it simply tells the reader that the region is not very interesting for a tourist.
I could (and will) expand the articles a bit in near future, I could make a sample for the Köpenick district as I lived there for more than 10 years. I am, however, a loner and more interested in nature than culture, so don't expect too much, especially for regions I don't know well.--Ichbins berlin (talk) 20:44, 16 March 2015 (UTC)
I'll look forward to your contributions. I don't like the idea of deliberately creating articles for districts about which not much could be written, though, if there's a way to avoid that. It just doesn't really seem in the interest of travellers to do that. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:11, 17 March 2015 (UTC)
The chances that any tourist would head towards Zehlendorf or Koepenick are quite small. Most of the tourist attractions are in the central districts as per the current split. It is only that, IMHO, Prenzberg has enough points of interest on its own to be split from Friedrichshein-Kreuzberg. We can deal with larger outer regions like South having diverse characteristics if they are not major destinations, this is the same for every other large city. PrinceGloria (talk) 08:56, 17 March 2015 (UTC)

Tours in "Do"[edit]

My understanding is that tours can't be listed in a place where they aren't required, except when they either involve an activity such as cycling or would be very difficult to perform on one's own (such as river tours, for which you would need to have or rent your own boat if you did it yourself). So aren't most of the tour listings in violation of Wikivoyage:Tour? Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:40, 10 May 2016 (UTC)

You are most likely right and those listings have most likely been overlooked. Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:43, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
Anyone disagree? Which if any of the tours should remain listed? Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:30, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
Any opinions before I plunge forward and probably delete most of these listings? Ikan Kekek (talk) 21:19, 11 May 2016 (UTC)
I think the public bus lines should stay. It's a type of "common knowledge" most tourist guides treat as a "secret tip"... Hobbitschuster (talk) 00:24, 12 May 2016 (UTC)
I completely agree and was not planning on deleting that. That's totally a "self-tour". Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:16, 12 May 2016 (UTC)

[Unindent]

These tour listings have been moved here in case any of them can be established to provide "value added" under the special definition at Wikivoyage:Tour:

  • 1 Alternative Berlin. English tour starting at 11:00-13:00 each day at Alexander Platz TV tower in front of Starbucks coffee. This tour uses Berlin's transit system to cover a massive amount of territory and focuses on the underground sites and sounds of Berlin, including art & graffiti culture, technological wonders, and landmarks of rock & electronic music. The tour takes three and half hours. Free (but tipping is more or less standard - the tour guides don't receive any other salary and must pay the tour company for every person who comes on the tour).
  • Berlin City Tours. Offers a wide range of sightseeing tours and excursions by foot, bike, bus and boat. They also offer a lot of interesting activities and private arrangements on request. They also offer tours and arrangements for cruise ship passengers arriving from Rostock/Warnemuende.
  • The Berlin Experts. Offers daily in-depth walking tours of Berlin's architecture, history, and culture. All tours include some history as well as other tidbits of trivia not commonly known. Especially popular is the Deconstruction/Construction Tour which provides an offbeat perspective of contemporary Berlin. They also offer special tours for cruise ship passengers.
  • Insider Tours. Offers daily tours in English, Hebrew, Italian and Spanish as well as private tours. Also offers day trips to Dresden, Potsdam and an excursion to the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Memorial Site. €9.
  • Jewish Berlin. Offers a variety of specialised Jewish Heritage tours in Berlin and its vicinity. Site also includes information about Jewish life in Berlin.
  • Vive Berlin Tours. A cooperative of experienced tour guides offers several walking tours, most notably free tours to the former concentration camp Sachsenhausen and a "Third Reich Tour" that cooperates with the 1936 Olympic Stadium.
  • Admission Free Berlin. Website giving a daily overview about free sights, parties and cultural events in Berlin.
  • Berlin Greeter, e-mail: . "Berlin Greeters" are volunteers who offer free walks through their Berlin districts. Individual face-to-face encounters between "real" Berliners and Berlin visitors are central for this project (six people maximum).

Some of these tours may be very interesting, but they don't seem to conform to this site's policy on tour listings. I've left the self-tour by public bus and other listings that mention waterways or helicopters, even though it's not entirely clear all of those conform, either. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:39, 12 May 2016 (UTC)

The lede[edit]

...is not exactly world class and among the things that seems to not have been edited in a major way since the migration. I have taken a stab at it, but probably a rewrite from scratch is called for. Hobbitschuster (talk) 08:35, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

"the limited services it offers are comparable in price to gas stations."[edit]

what does this mean in the section on the ZOB? Griffindd (talk) 08:12, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

It means that there is not much on offer there, especially when compared to a train station of similar size and the prices are more in line with gas stations (i.e. high) Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:41, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

oh. that makes a bit more sense. I was thinking of services as in bus services/routes. Not sure a)"gas station" is the kind of English which is supposed to be here or that b) the comparision with gas stations will make sense to non-drivers, or people who do not drive in Germany. In any case I've rewritten the sentence, hopefully it's a bit more clear now. Griffindd (talk) 18:53, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

I'm a non-driver (I don't even have a drivers license) and German and to me the wording made sense (albeit one that sounds better could probably be found). You may however be right that gas station shop = price gouging may not be a universal concept. Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:12, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

Tegel Airport[edit]

So there is currently an attempt by some (among them the Berlin FDP) to keep Tegel open even after BER opens (whenever that may be). They have collected quite a number of signatures to get a measure on the ballot and it will become official on April 4th whether or not the number of signatures is enough (there are likely invalid signatures and those have to be subtracted). If and when I become aware of new developments, I'll post them here, as the issue of Tegel closing "soon" or staying open indefinitely is definitely relevant for travel. Hobbitschuster (talk) 13:48, 26 March 2017 (UTC)

So the referendum will happen but the exact date is not yet set. It's likely but not guaranteed that it will be concurrent to the federal elections. Unfortunately there is a certain incentive for opponents of the referendum's goals to have the referendum scheduled some other day as referenda are only binding if more than (I think it was 25%) of eligible voters vote yes which also have to be more than the number of people that vote no. Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:51, 4 April 2017 (UTC)

Call a Bike[edit]

I think the cycle hire section may be out of date. I visited Berlin last week and the "Call a Bike" cycles are now sponsored by Lidl so they are green rather than red. Also the cycles appear to be left on the street for the next user rather than at fixed hire stations (see photo - https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C6uL9k_WkAEbFZq.jpg). Can anyone confirm this please? Crookesmoor (talk) 12:45, 27 March 2017 (UTC)

I spent about 15 minutes today in Berlin (other than in U-Bahn trains or supermarkets and at the ZOB), but I can confirm that those bikes are sponsored by Lidl now and are indeed not red and while I could not see whether the point where they were was supposed to be a dedicated station, it didn't look like one. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:03, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
Some places looked like "dedicated" stations as there were several bikes arranged neatly (as in the photo above), although no docking infrastructure as in other cities (eg Santander Cycles in London). Crookesmoor (talk) 07:04, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
Update: I've updated the article and linked to the Lidl-Bike website.
Apparently, you get a 50 cent discount if you leave your bike at a station instead of just anywhere. Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:36, 28 March 2017 (UTC)

Listing "Downfall" ("Der Untergang") in the media set in Berlin section[edit]

So a fairly new user (on WV at least) made this addition to the list of media set in Berlin and I am not sure about it. First of all, today's Berlin thankfully looks nothing like the Berlin in the film, with many of the sites shown explicitly razed by the Allies to eliminate the potential for "Nazi pilgrimage" second of all, I don't know how much (if any) of the movie was actually shot in Berlin and not Görlitz or some other place that "looks like before the war" (or that simply offers better tax breaks). Lastly, the movie is not particularly "about Berlin" whereas all the other works are to an appreciable degree rooted in Berlin. Do you disagree? Is the list short enough to allow one entry that arguably doesn't belong? Is there any obvious omission that could or should replace it? Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:22, 22 April 2017 (UTC)

Regarding the location of shooting, en-WP says "The film is set mostly in and around the Führerbunker. Hirschbiegel made an effort to accurately reconstruct the look and atmosphere of the bunker through eyewitness accounts, survivors' memoirs, and other historical sources. According to his commentary on the DVD, Der Untergang was filmed in Berlin, Munich, and in a district of Saint Petersburg, Russia with many buildings designed by German architects, which was said to resemble many parts of 1940s Berlin." whereas de-WP mentions the Munich studio shots and location shots being done in St. Petersburg but is silent on any shooting at all in Berlin. As they say in "the biz" Vancouver doesn't look like anything and apparently, Berlin is not a good enough double of itself to shoot period pieces. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:27, 22 April 2017 (UTC)

I see no reason why this movie should not be listed. While the movie is not "about Berlin" per se, the w:Battle of Berlin was one of the most important historical events that happened in the city. For that matter, I would similarly think that a good film centered on the Fire of Moscow (1812) or the fall of Constantinople (1204 or 1453), should there be any, may deserve a mention in the articles about their respective cities, even if those cities don't look much like they did in those years. -- Vmenkov (talk) 02:16, 29 April 2017 (UTC)

I'm not convinced how relevant the movie is to visiting Berlin. I might suggest w:Sonnenallee and w:Good_Bye,_Lenin! as films with a better feel for Berlin. --Andrewssi2 (talk) 02:28, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
If it was the Telstra vandal who suggested this movie, that's a reason not to mention it. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:24, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
Yes it was Telstra. Removing. Andrewssi2 (talk) 09:46, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
The movies you mentioned might merit a blurb though...Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:47, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
Happy for inclusion :) Andrewssi2 (talk) 21:45, 29 April 2017 (UTC)
The articles World War II in Europe and Holocaust remembrance can be used to describe Nazi destinations in a context that makes clear how terrible they were. /Yvwv (talk) 13:48, 22 May 2017 (UTC)
@Andrewssi2: I included Good Bye Lenin. Unfortunately I haven't seen Sonnenallee and thus cannot really give it a good blurb. Hobbitschuster (talk) 18:32, 26 July 2017 (UTC)

Too many details in this article[edit]

Is it really necessary to list that many theatres, operas, concerts and cinemas in this overview article? A limitation to the very highlights of Berlin would be a lot better in my opinion. The rest can be moved to the district articles. What do you think?--Renek78 (talk) 08:02, 4 May 2017 (UTC)

You're right, but the basic problem that I see is that there are specific listings at all. Instead, every section (in this case, the "Do" section) should be a general summary, with each specific example linked to the appropriate district article, the only place the full listings should be. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:06, 4 May 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, Ikan Kekek. Gonna clean this up as soon as possible. —The preceding comment was added by Renek78 (talkcontribs)
Terrific, and thanks for your work on these articles. Ikan Kekek (talk) 19:00, 4 May 2017 (UTC)
I completely agree that listing details should be in the appropriate district articles, and that only a short summary should be in this main page. However, I want to emphasise that an (almost) complete listing of theatre, concert and opera venues on this main page is very helpful for the traveler, since it provides a quick overview of what venues are available - and therefore where to look for events. There is not an unlimited number of these venues, so the required space won't be too large. Xsobev (talk) 09:11, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
Maybe a complete list, but I would suggest that the complete templated listings be in the appropriate district guides, though brief, usable bullet points could be left here. Ikan Kekek (talk) 09:41, 2 January 2018 (UTC)
I moved most of the details to the respective district listings (especially in the "Cultural events" section) and left a link to each district page. I'm not sure what to do about the wikidata, wikipedia and image details. Personally, I would remove them. On the other hand I'm tempted to leave the geo coordinates in, since it's also useful as an overview. However, getting rid of the listings template here completely, would probably be best, since then people are less likely to just fill in the details again. What do you think? Xsobev (talk) 17:55, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
Yes, I'd definitely remove the templates. Ikan Kekek (talk) 21:47, 4 January 2018 (UTC)
I'm happy to do this. For future reference for myself and other users, do you know of a page in the wiki that explains/justifies these changes? Also what about the geo coordinates? Should they be left in (via a marker template). The same question goes for the URLs. Thanks, Xsobev (talk) 13:22, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Ok, the most appropriate and detailed explanation I found is here: Wikivoyage:Huge_city_article_template#See. It doesn't say anything about geo coordinates or URLs, but it's very clear about not using listings. Xsobev (talk) 12:42, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

Sorry for not getting back to you on this, and thanks for doing this. Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:05, 10 January 2018 (UTC)

Editing Berlin for clarity, flow, tone and lack of duplications[edit]

Swept in from the pub

So I have written quite a bit of what are currently the top sections of Berlin (i.e. understand and so on). However, it has some problems with mentioning similar things more than once and some others. If you feel like doing some copy-editing for flow and whatnot and trying to expunge some crypto-Germanisms, be my guest. Hobbitschuster (talk) 20:14, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

No takers? Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:11, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

To Guide and DotM[edit]

Given that none of the District articles below this one is currently rated below usable, the first formal criterion for promotion to guide is met. What else would have to be done to get it there? Hobbitschuster (talk) 14:02, 26 July 2017 (UTC)

For guide status not much more I'd say, but per comments on the nominations page there are a little bit too much bullet points, and See and Do have listings that should be moved to the district articles instead. --ϒpsilon (talk) 19:08, 26 July 2017 (UTC)

Redrawing (some) districts?[edit]

Have a look at articles like Berlin/South or Berlin/East Central - they appear to be quite full of attractions and there appear to be somewhat plausible ways of subdividing them. Should we consider this? Hobbitschuster (talk) 17:16, 31 August 2017 (UTC)

appear to be a reasonable size for me at the moment. --Traveler100 (talk) 19:18, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
Well our "South" district is - as we sorta acknowledge - not exactly a "natural" or "homogeneous" division of any sort. It is perhaps a result of those areas being less touristed and us thus putting them all together into one. And East Central mostly consists of Kreuzberg-Friedrichshain where at least one dividing line seems beyond obvious. So it's not like there aren't potential lines along which to split them up. And I think their maps do look rather crowded. How many listings would you consider too many and how many would you consider too few? Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:11, 11 September 2017 (UTC)

I have raised the issue at Talk:Berlin/South Hobbitschuster (talk) 15:05, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

Public transit maps[edit]

I have maps for all types of public transit in Berlin except bus, but they are topographic maps, which show the lines in the form they actually have rather than the stylized maps one is more likely to find in brochures. Both types absolutely have their uses and right to exist, but I think we should have one "as many lines as we can" map that is a stylized representation. Unfortunately, perusing commons there seem to only be maps which include U- and S-Bahn but not Tram or Bus and the Regional trains, which have some use for covering larger distances don't seem to appear on anything but the maps for how BER will be served some time in the year twenty-five-twenty-five. Does any of y'all have a good idea? Hobbitschuster (talk) 09:05, 21 December 2017 (UTC)

The brainless saga of Berlin Airports, part infinity[edit]

Swept in from the pub

So as you may or may not know, the long awaited political earthquake that was German elections took place on Sunday. On that same day, there also was a referendum on whether to keep open Tegel airport. Now for background: I bought a plane ticket in 2012 that already had an airport listed as the destination that does not yet exist (instead I flew to Tegel) and the mayor of Berlin was Eberhard Diepgen, the chancellor of Germany was Helmut Kohl and the guy in charge of Brandenburg was godknowswho, when all those people and a few others agreed on the following: Berlin gets a new airport. All remaining airports shut down at the latest half a year after the new airport opens. Until this new airport opens, there are to be no major investments in airports that will be shut down regardless. Now the FDP (if you're American, think Libertarians) has been struggling and together with Ryanair and car rental companies, they launched a collection of signatures to put a measure on the ballot "urging" the government of Berlin to "do whatever it takes" to keep Tegel open even way beyond its best before date. Of course Berlin cannot unilaterally go against what was agreed two decades ago by three different governments, the current mayor of Berlin thinks keeping Tegel open is a phenomenally stupid idea, and keeping Tegel open requires major state money to be spent - which should be anathema for the tax-cut party that is FDP. At any rate, roughly 55% of those voting in Berlin voted for the whatever it is that it actually says, and now the city government is officially bound to abide by the non binding text of the ballot measure that does not even propose a law of any kind. The travel related bottom line is likely to be, that Berlin will continue to have two airports for some time. Maybe even after BER (the new airport) opens. Or not. Who on earth knows? There'll likely be court cases. And in court and on the high seas, Zeus only knows what will happen. The outgoing (federal elections, remember) minister of transportation said days before the vote that "he could imagine" Tegel remaining open, but he has already taken on a job within his party caucus, which is next to never held concurrently with one in cabinet. Nobody knows what will happen next, but given the traffic figures and the somewhat unique design of Tegel, do we at long last need an airport article on it? Even in the face of it possibly shutting down anyway? Or even being forced to shut down before BER opens (which would be some glorious historic irony)? What would we do with the article were Tegel to shut down? At any rate, I tried to do the developing slow motion train wreck (or rather plane crash) justice on the Berlin page, but my obvious bias may have seeped through. If you have questions, I probably know more about the subject than I would like to... Hobbitschuster (talk) 19:46, 28 September 2017 (UTC)

Is Tegel or BER of much importance for travellers? Everyone I know (all North Americans or people employed in Asia) who wanted to visit Germany flew to either Amsterdam or Frankfurt. Is it different from within Europe? Did I just miss a possibility? Pashley (talk) 19:28, 29 September 2017 (UTC)
Berlin is unique in being an important international capital city without a significant international airport (owing mostly to the division of the country during the GDR years and the gravity of Frankfurt being the gateway to Germany).
Fixing the Berlin airport situation seems both important and very problematic, but ultimately the background isn't important for travelers to Berlin. Andrewssi2 (talk) 00:24, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
The situation with an important capital with a comparatively insignificant airport is not that unique (think Canberra and Ottawa). We need to keep the article up to date, there's not much else we can do. If TXL shuts down and you can't fly to Berlin, we need to put in a caution box that travelers have to fly to Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munich or some of the small budget airline airports in northern Germany. ϒpsilon (talk) 05:50, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
But in all the other cases of an important country with second class airports in its capital (to which South Africa might be added, where Pretoria is not exactly home to the biggest airport), the capital is actually a fairly "minor" city by comparison. Berlin is the biggest city and if we were to judge by metro areas, Ruhr does not exactly contain a major airport, either. That said, Air Berlin (which is now bankrupt and in the process of godknowswhat) did have a fairly extensive network through Tegel, which they intended to move to BER (said move not having occurred being among the cited reasons for the bankruptcy). TXL as of 2016 figures has roughly above 20 million pax per annum. A third of FRA, but certainly in the range of some airports for which WV does have articles. Hobbitschuster (talk) 16:28, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
Düsseldorf has a massive airport and is close to the Ruhr, so there's probably little motivation to build any large airport in the Ruhr region proper. Ikan Kekek (talk) 21:31, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
Frankfurt Airport isn't too far away, either. Overall, Germany has too many airports (especially too many small town airports that think two flights a week to Antalya are worth millions in subsidies), but I digress. At any rate, should we create an article on Berlin Tegel Airport? And if so, what should be done if and when it shuts down? I think we should create and article on the BER if (when?) it opens, though... Hobbitschuster (talk) 22:47, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
I'm not sure Tegel needs an article. It's really quite simple to go through security there, it's a smallish airport that's easy to walk around and understand, and I'm unsure transportation to Berlin can't just be dealt with in the Berlin article. Ikan Kekek (talk) 23:34, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
I flew to Tegal once (from Munich), and have to say an interesting airport. Not sure it merits an Airport article though. Andrewssi2 (talk) 08:42, 1 October 2017 (UTC)

Location of the zoo[edit]

Hi all, the two listings in "See" regarding the zoo (Berlin Zoo and Aquarium) should be moved to their appropriate district page. But which is the best one? According to the dynamic district map the listings belong to Berlin/Mitte, but for the traveler it would make more sense to have them in the same district page as the S+U+train station Zoologischer Garten, which would be in Berlin/City West. Xsobev (talk) 15:36, 9 January 2018 (UTC)

For now, I merged them with the existing listings in Berlin/Mitte. Xsobev (talk) 15:25, 10 January 2018 (UTC)