Tucked away in the ever more modern Mitte district, Sophienstrasse is one of those streets where you can get lost in the romance of old world Berlin. Named after the Prussian Queen Sophie Luise, the 19th Century influence still pervades the street, with a mix of interesting local shops and the Sophienkirche.

Among the quirky highlights are a trip to the Glockenladen, Berlin’s foremost bell shop;Whisky and Cigars, a shop that doesn’t surprisingly deviate from its name and the Firelanz Puppentheater, where you can catch puppet shows for kids or for marionette operas for adults. But that doesn’t mean Sophienstrasse is fully old world or a caricature of it’s past. Mitte’s modern influence can be found in Sophie Gips Höfe – a courtyard that is home to two of Berlin’s more recent institutions. Here, you’ll find the NY inspired Barcomi’s deli, the nucleus of baking goddess Cynthia Barcomi and the art book temple that is Gestalten Space– a must for any design fiend.

Year round, there is always a little surprise on Sophienstrasse – but do make a trip there at Christmas, when the streets fill up with crafts and arts for their advent Christmas Market. Expect classy fare with an ecologically conscious slant and a nostalgic atmosphere that fits with the surroundings.

Sophienstraße, 10178 Berlin
For more information on the Christmas Market, visit Weihnachtsmarkt Sophienstrasse.

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