Berlin is a popular party destination, and in the summer the city swells with visitors. But, as the city freezes over, the tourists become few and far between. While braving the Berlin winter to go clubbing might seem insane, you will be out with the original club kids of Berlin.
During the summer, Berlin club queues can stretch for hours and you always run the risk of not getting in. In winter, this not the case. Although certain popular club nights—like Cocktail d’Amour and Gegen—will still draw up huge crowds, the average club night in the winter has a considerably smaller line than you will find in the warmer months.
This is simply a numbers game—in the warmer months there are so many more people trying to get into the same clubs, making it much more difficult. However, in the winter, when most of the tourists have left, the lines are smaller and a lot of the clubs who tighten their door policies in summer, become more relaxed.
Weather in Europe is a hot topic, and with our freezing winters and balmy summers, Berlin is no exception. In the summer, it feels like you’re cheating yourself if you spend a whole day in bed recovering from a night of clubbing. In the winter it’s a different story, and spending a day holed up in bed, goes hand in hand with the season.
A lot of Berlin’s best techno clubs are renovated industrial spaces. In the peak of summer, packing into these heavy concrete buildings with hundreds of sweaty bodies can be overwhelming in the heat. But, in winter, the insulated clubs are a welcome escape from the cold outside.
Techno is beloved in Berlin, regardless of the season. So much so that even the city’s many cosy bars will often have a soft, house techno track playing in the background. But, when the snow is falling and the weather is sub-zero, the opportunity to stay in the warm, thumping techno club for 36-plus-hours has never been so tempting.
When the open air season comes to an end, Berlin’s party calendar is far from over. Popular nights, like Herrensauna and Buttons, run throughout the year. That’s as well as Berghain’s infamous Christmas party and the many New Year’s Eve parties at the city’s best techno clubs.
Short dresses and high-heels have no place in the Berlin clubbing scene. It’s all about the music and dancing, and it’s common to find club kids in head-to-toe sportswear. In winter, you can rug up in your winter coat, hat, gloves and scarf without the bouncers batting an eyelid. And, because every club has a cloakroom, you can disrobe and enjoy the warm atmosphere inside.
Berghain and beyond, Berlin has some of the best clubs in the world and scores of famous DJs flock to play shows and residencies here throughout the year. The city itself also produces some amazing DJs, who brave the cold with other locals to put on amazing techno nights.
Going out in a large group in Berlin is extremely difficult, you all have to break up in the line and there is a high possibility that you won’t get into the same club. During the tourist-heavy summers, this prospect is impossible. However, the shorter lines and lack of tourists in winter mean you have a better chance to all get into the same place.
The day-party is a big part of clubbing in Berlin’s summer, this is because, when the winter comes it’s the sun that locals miss most. Most of Berlin’s best techno clubs have a common, industrial theme: converted spaces and concrete walls radiating minimal-to-hard techno. In the peak of summer, open-air and Spree-side clubs are preferred, but the dark, cosy nature of winter means hauling into an industrial club with other sweaty bodies to dance until dawn feels just right.