As I am living in the Western part of Berlin, most of the shopping I do is from the sanitized and very clean covered markets and shops, but one of the places by far when I feel that the buying experience is always worth any price is at the flea markets from the Eastern part. We do have such markets in our side of the city as well, but my experience by now were a bit boring, so I rather prefer to skip this part till I will discover something really worth the writing. A flea market with people selling and inviting the customers to buy more for less, joking and enjoying their time, this is what I am always enjoying. A flea market like the one on Maybachufer, for instance.
From the Schoenleinstrasse U-Bahn station, the market - open every Friday - can be reached within minutes, at Kottbuser Damm. Take your time to notice the smell of fresh bakery in the air welcoming you once you went out of the metro station. Near the U-Bahn station, some people were selling bunches of veggies. Yes, this is Berlin too.
The smells are catching, calling your name and ordering you to buy more and more. And so are the colours. Or the screams of the vendors with updates deals. The best is to arrive shortly before closing and get a lot for much less. No wonders that the market is visited regularly by people from all over the city, but also from tourists and very often by expats, that cannot have enough of taking pictures after pictures. However, people in the area are often from the traditional type and might have concerns about appearing on the camera so better be careful and try to take into account the local sensitivities! The best is to ask them if they agree to be photographed.
The prices are very low, which taking into account the general low prices for food in Berlin, means extremely cheap. And when it comes to cherries, I can easily eat many kilos the day. Let's buy as much as my budget allows me, then. Getting in debt for cherries, what a sweet idea!
This flea market, compared with similar markets in Berlin, are not only about food! Textiles of all kinds, including massive rolls of cotton I haven't seen since my early childhood, jewels many of them really beautiful and with unique patterns, leather bags or various second-hand objects, all are ready to find a new owner from 11 o'clock in the morning.
There is also a lot of street food to taste, from the delicious Turkish foods to the Glutenfree galettes or icecream parlours. Waiting in line may last a bit, time to change your mind a couple of times or eventually to add one more meals to the menu.
If you don't like eating while walking, find a place near the shore and enjoy the young gang of people that usually hang around there - even where the market is closed. Very often, street musicians are doing open air rehearsals during the summer while entertaining the ambiance.