One thing that I love about Europe is how children are considered in almost everything they do. Just because a person has children, doesn’t mean that they have to stop living. Berlin is no exception. The wide variety of monuments are all interesting to children and adults.
For history, you may want to take your kids to see the section of the Berlin wall that is on display near Potsdamer Platz by the Sony Center. And to the DDR Museum which displays what life was like in the East. For our “spoiled”, basically care-free lifestyles, it is a wake up call to both adults and children as to what life was like there only 20 years ago.
On a lighter note, not far from there is LegoLand, an underground playground for kids who love Legos. We actually found it quite depressing (as well as expensive). It was about 50 euros for 2 adults and a child, but one ticket was free since we found a coupon in a restaurant called “Lemke Brauhaus” in the Mitte section of the city a few nights before. Some of the Lego creations were pretty cool, like the Indiana Jones and the reptiles, but even our daughter Daisy who is 7 wasn’t terribly impressed with it. I think we killed like 2 hours there.
The Berlin Zoo was actually really nice. This is not to be confused with the Tiergarten Zoo which is in the Tiergarten park. They got it right. The Berlin Zoo is an exquisitely designed space that provides its animals with lots of room to roam and interact. Beware though. Lines are loooooooong! You would probably have to wait upwards of an hour if you go during the summer. You can get coupons for this zoo as well, but you must present one for each ticket you want a discount on. The discount is only for a euro or two, but better that than nothing.
Many people like to exaggerate that zoos are cruel, but their function is to raise consciousness about animals and their habitats and how to protect them. In fact, I’d argue that most of the zoos I have visited treated their animals far better than the average pet owner in terms of trying to recreate the animals natural environment as much as possible and feed them the foods they are designed to eat instead of boxes of kibble or other non-nutritive foods, which would cause their fur to fall out and to develop a bunch of human illnesses. Something to think about before shaking a finger at anyone.
We only really had about 5 days completely without rain during our 2 week stay, so we didn’t get to do a ton of stuff, but we did stop at a number of parks along the way. There are playgrounds everywhere! Daisy loved the playground up the street from our apartment. And we stopped in a number of others around town as well.
There are also lots of 20-somethings who provide activities for kids. Be sure to tip them as many people seem to want to have them entertain their kids for free. They provide a great service and deserve to be patronized.
Daisy is also a huge fan of all things ancient Egypt. So imagine her delight to see the actual bust of Nefertiti up close! She received a replica as a birthday present a few years ago, but seeing the real thing was surely a highlight for her. If your kids love antiquities, then head over to the Neues Museum on Museum Island.