Everyone said I would love Berlin. Little did I know, I would be swept up in a serious love affair at which I would never recover. I stepped off the short 2-hour plane ride from the most profoundly contrasting place, Morocco. This is when I immediately met my true love.
Los Angeles had always been my favorite city until I met Berlin. Berlin makes me feel alive more than any other time, place, space, or person ever has. Berlin is my soulmate, my kindred spirit.
Berlin has an intense energy where you can easily get swept up in ultimate desire – hedonistic to its core. A creative, free-spirited playground for adults. A place full of other young creative entrepreneurs, start-ups, and other digital nomads doing incredible, meaningful things in the world. I crossed paths with some of the most interesting people whose lessons, perspectives and ideas will have an everlasting effect on me.
As most true soulmates do, Berlin pulled out a darker side of me. A side I haven’t been in touch with in a while. This part of me is something that I used to hate and fear. Berlin encouraged me to embrace and even love this fully.
I’ve learned that places truly have a strong influence on you. What I admire about Berlin is that even though there is a dark past embedded in the city – it is not ignored, but accepted fully. Even used as a tool to move forward. There are years and years of grim history and positive rebuilding. This has helped me rebuild my own self while I transition into a full-time world wanderer.
And this celebratory dance didn’t quite end for most of the month here in Berlin. My first breakfast in Berlin was at Kaffeekirsche. The coffee was like a slice of heaven and the sandwiches here also stole my heart. Plus, this wall is basically asking you to stand in front of it for a photo opp.
My apartment was in Friedrichshain which was a skip out the door from the most colorful and cool coffee shops, boutiques, restaurants, bars and everything in between. It was by far my most favorite part of Berlin. I could be biased as I was able to fully rendezvous with every bit of it for a whole month.
Can we talk about this street art with confetti and glitter?! Seriously magical!
By now, you may know that I’m a true flower enthusiast. My Instagram is often filled with them, I buy them at every chance when I’m home as they simply bring me way too much happiness. I LOVED that Berlin shared my floral love.
Almost every restaurant and coffee shop had fresh, colorful flowers. It’s as if the entire city is in on making their spaces more beautiful. Even some of the streets in my neighborhood were sprinkled with these sunflowers.
I’m now 2 months into my journey of leaving everything to become a digital nomad / world wanderer. With that, comes a real transitional period that I may still be going through in months to come. Currently, I have no plans to go back “home”.
During my time in Berlin, I realized how much alone time kind of scared me. Being around other people constantly enables me to distract myself from the somewhat painful things that were going on in my life at this time… like my breakup with my boyfriend, leaving my entire life behind, feeling a tiny bit homesick (mostly missing my puppy and best friends back at home). I know when things scare me, I must face them.
My “me” time in Berlin was taking walks to nowhere by myself. It was my time to reflect on my adventure thus far and face my past. It was an extra added bonus that these walks led to some of the most colorful street art.
Once I got to Berlin, I was utterly overtaken by inspiration… but maybe not the kind you are thinking that springs you into new things. This type of inspiration made me question everything I was doing in business and got me wondering if my efforts were even making a difference. It was actually so overwhelming that I decided to take a couple steps back from work for a couple weeks as I didn’t want to go full force into anything without my heart fully in it. There were days where I was questioning my own existence and mission in this world. AH! It was a wild journey, but I faced it head on for one of the first times in my life.
I was going back and forth from literally scratching my entire business and starting a new one because it felt so foreign to me. The time away brought me so much clarity as I felt so unaligned before I left on this trip/began this new nomadic lifestyle. I went from being an extremely tired, overworked business owner to taking a journey to following my all of passions and desires. Berlin was so in alignment with who I wanted to be that my heart needed time to catch up. I now see my business with new eyes and a newly aligned heart.
After releasing and forgiving some things + people the last week in Berlin, I was able to fall back in love with my business with a completely new inspired outlook. Sometimes we attract things in our darkest times that no longer serve us when we come out of the dark. The best part about it is that sometimes we don’t even need to forcefully release them as life has a synchronistic way of releasing them on their own. That is what happened for me in my last week here.
My journey through Berlin was one of total ups and downs but I embraced every second of the journey as I’m committed to feeling it all. I learned how to be truly honest with myself in order to move forward.
The best part about Berlin or discovering any city is getting lost. I naturally get lost everywhere I go, no matter what directions or app I have on my phone. I never get stressed about it because those are some of my favorite moments in my travel adventures. Actually, in Berlin, I tried to get lost a couple times so I could discover more hidden treasures.
I put my headphones on, took my camera out and started falling even deeper in love with this colorful city. Every turn you take there’s something brilliant to capture.
One of my favorite coffee shops – Cozys where we basically went to every single day. The cold brew was unreal. I could sit here forever except they have a 1-hour laptop rule so I enjoyed every single minute of my coffee and work time I could get my hands on.
Actually, it was a bit hard to find a lot of coffee shops that welcomed working on your laptop for hours. Having a spot in a co-work space in the city was so helpful to getting shit done if you don’t want to work from home.
I worked from Betahaus which is an amazing cowork space but also has a cafe below that is probably one of the most inspiring and productive places to work from.
One of the most inspiring days in Berlin was visiting Alte Nationalgalerie (the art of 19th-century exhibit). We rode bikes all around the city and walked through the exhibit for hours.
I used to HATE going to museums because my parents would drag me through them as a kid. I’m always extremely antsy and still am so walking slowly through anything makes me go crazy a bit. As an adult, I’ve slowly become like my parents (AH!) as I take in each paint stroke and beautiful color I see. They would be proud! I could have spent hours in this museum.
Plus, getting a bike in Berlin is one of the best things you can do. You see a whole new part of Berlin that you would never see taking any public transportation (which is amazing here, btw!) or walking around. My apartment came with a bike, which is pretty common here, but you can easily rent one. There are bike paths everywhere even with separate bike traffic lights.
I do have to mention that if you are single (which I am as of recently), Tinder in Berlin is THE BEST! Tindering when you are traveling is great because you have the opportunity to meet new people whether it is new friends or something more. Truly some of the best experiences I’ve had so far on this trip thus far has been because of the people I met through this silly app on my phone. I’ve officially become a Tinderella.
Anyways, if you are solo traveling in Berlin… Tinder is a must. There’s no shortage of hotties in Berlin. haha… just being honest 😉
This is not sponsored by Tinder, but I totally wouldn’t be opposed that partnership. haaaaa!
This 30-meter high sculpture, Molecule Man, must be seen at sunset or sunrise. I went with a few friends and we had minutes until the sunset as we rode the metro here. We sprinted to it just in time for these glorious pictures. In person, it’s 100 times more magical.
The sunsets in Berlin were out of this world every single night. Something that happens often in Los Angeles so it made me feel right at home. It’s wild how you can see something like this every night but still be in absolute wonder when you see it one more time.
One of my favorite days in Berlin was going to Mauerpark. They have live music and a flea market every Sunday. It started raining but it was still an adventure while it lasted because I spent it with some of my favorite people (the traveling circus pictured above).
The only downside to traveling + opening up your heart to so many new people is eventually leaving. I’ve had the opportunity to rendezvous with some of the most incredible people on my journey in Berlin. Saying goodbye to these people brought a couple tears… ok maybe more than a couple. I’m horrible at goodbyes and super sappy… bad combo!
This was one of my last nights in Berlin. The sunset was magical. I know it was the city’s way of giving me the most colorful kiss so I would always come back for more.
Seriously, this event was out of movie… I was packing up my suitcase and saw this sunset out of my window. I immediately grabbed my camera, went downstairs and 100 other people had the same idea. It was the most epic goodbye sunset.
photo by: Caroline White
I couldn’t help myself. I actually went back to Berlin on my way back to Budapest through a side trip from Amsterdam. It was a mini getaway with one true love city. Still the same love, some new and lovely people. A bit harder to say goodbye again this time.
Everytime my path crossed with a dog, my heart melted and ached for my puppy at home. He’s the one thing I wish I could of brought with me on my journey. This was the moment before Caroline became the dog queen of about 5 dogs approaching. #dogheaven
Just a bunch of traveling weirdos, nothing to see here 😉
When I look back on these photos, I go back in time and space to a place that ferociously stole my heart. I get a sense of intense anticipation knowing that I can transport back and Berlin will accept me its wild, untamed but open arms. Until next time, Berlin.