Save The Par­ents

Where Berlin - - Contents -

Kid-friendly ac­tiv­i­ties and lo­ca­tions to keep the par­ents sane and ev­ery­body happy. BY SOLVEIG STEIN­HARDT

BSolveig Stein­hardt

er­lin is many things: the city of nightlife, the world cap­i­tal of cre­ativ­ity, start-up heaven. But it is also a city made for chil­dren, and not just be­cause of its 1850 play­grounds, its two zoos, and its stroller-friendly trans­porta­tion sys­tem. Ber­lin­ers like to adapt adult places like cafés, restau­rants, and gyms and turn them into spots chil­dren will en­joy as well – which means lots of fun for the lit­tle ones and more re­laxed after­noons for the par­ents.

At a Kin­der­café, par­ents may even en­joy a half-hour of undis­turbed chat with friends while the kids climb ceil­ing-high wooden cas­tles or ride around on toy cars. Scat­tered all over the city, these in­door play­ground­scum-cafés are a great so­lu­tion to rainy Sun­day dilem­mas. Milch­bart in Pren­zlauer Berg

ex­plores the city’s most “adult-friendly” chil­dren’s attractions.

(Paul-Robe­son-Straße 6, daily 10am–6pm) fo­cuses on man­ual ac­tiv­i­ties, while Knilch­bar in Friedrichshain (Krossener Str. 8, Tue–Sun 10am–6:30pm) serves a rich brunch buf­fet while kids crawl through aerial tun­nels be­tween the rooms. In roomier Char­lottchen (Droy­sen­str. 1, Mon–Fri from 3pm, Sat & Sun from 10am) in Char­lot­ten­burg, the adult space is (mildly) sep­a­rated from the kids’ play­room, al­low­ing for rel­a­tively peace­ful con­ver­sa­tions, and there is also a the­ater for daily pup­pet shows.

There’s noth­ing like a good climb for en­er­getic kids in need of let­ting off some steam. The Wald­hoch­seil­gar­ten Jungfern­heide (Heck­er­damm 260, www.wald­hoch­seil­gar­ten-jungfern­heide. de) is a climb­ing park in the Char­lot­ten­burg woods. De­signed for grown-ups and chil­dren 7+, the park has nine dif­fer­ent adult routes and three kids’ ones. Got a younger clim­ber? Head to one of the city’s play­grounds. From Char­lot­ten­burg’s Snow White house to the gi­ant dragon slide in Friedrichshain to the pi­rate ships of Gör­l­itzer Park, each of the count­less play­grounds has a theme; if your fa­vorite theme is re­lax­ing-while-the-kids-play, there’s the Café am Neuen See, a beer gar­den in the Tier­garten that also of­fers a sand­pit, a nearby play­ground, and rental boats.

For a jour­ney back in time, kids and adults alike should take a walk in the Mu­se­ums­dorf Düp­pel (www.duep­pel.de) in Zehlen­dorf. This re­con­structed medieval town takes vis­i­tors back to the Mid­dle Ages as they walk through the vil­lage, en­ter the thatched houses, or visit the pigs and sheep at the farm. There is also a work­ing old well and a medieval café sell­ing freshly baked bread, pick­les, and soup. For more hands-on fun, the FEZ (www.fezber­lin.de) fam­ily cul­tural cen­ter, cre­ated as an amuse­ment park dur­ing the GDR, of­fers ma­te­rial for kids to build their own vil­lage. They can also man­age their own store, go on a boat trip run by other chil­dren, take part in an art class or, if vis­it­ing on 16 and 17 Au­gust, blow gi­gan­tic bub­bles, all while mom and dad sip cof­fee and read the news­pa­per.

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