Berlin, Dining, Family Fun, Germany, Markets, Restaurants, Shopping

Berlin’s Little Istanbul and the Turkish Market

January 4, 2016

Berlin is home to the largest Turkish community outside of Turkey. In fact, more than 200,000 Berlin residents claim Turkish heritage making them the city’s largest ethnic minority.   The Kreuzberg neighborhood in central Berlin, known as Little Istanbul, is home to many residents of Turkish ethnicity, including our server at the Ritz Carlton’s Brasserie Desbrosses It was she who suggested we visit the popular Turkish market on Maybachuferstrasse.


Berlin’s Turkish Market is held Tuesdays and Fridays from 11 a.m. until 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday morning we jumped on the Number 2 Ubahn line at Potsdamerplatz, changed at Alexanderplatz (a major transit hub) to the Number 8 line and took it to Schonleinstrasse. We walked a few short blocks on Schinkestrasse heading East towards the Landwehrkanal and Maybachuferstrasse—home of Berlin’s largest outdoor Turkish market.


Kreuzberg in central Berlin is known as Little Istanbul for its large number of Turkish residents, the largest community outside of Turkey.



Fresh produce, spices and herbs are in abundance at the Turkish Market on Maybachuferstrasse.



Shoppers line up to take home these kabobs.

Vendors set up shop from 11 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays and draw quite a diverse crowd from young mothers pushing their strollers to older residents in traditional garb to tourists looking for a quick bite from one of the many food stalls.


The Turkish Market draws a diverse crowd.



Fresh baked breads are one reason people flock to the market.



Fish doesn’t get much fresher than this.

Merchants hawking fresh produce, baked goods, fresh fish, cheese, spices, flowers, clothing, toys, electronics, leather goods, table linens and a surprising amount of fabric and sewing notions line the approximate half-mile on Maybachuferstrasse.


Thread, buttons, ribbons, trim, and other sewing needs are all available at Berlin’s Turkish Market.



Stalls with brightly colored bolts of fabric for clothing and household needs line Maybachuferstrasse.

Young people lounge along the canal enjoying impromptu musical performances by buskers while neighbors shop and chat. It’s a very lively scene.


A cup of subtly spiced saklep, a hot beverage akin to a milky tea, is just the thing on a chilly day.



It was hard to resist these delicious looking and aromatic Anatolian delights.

We were very tempted by the delicious looking food on offer at the market but had been counseled to try lunch at Hasir, so we continued on.


Hasir is a popular Turkish restaurant with authentic cooking and a casual vibe.

Though we probably could have walked, we were really hungry so we got back on the Ubahn and took the Number 8 one stop to Kottbusser Tor. A quick walk northeast on Adalbertstrasse brought us to the heart of Kreuzberg’s Turkish neighborhood and Hasir, located at Adalbertstrasse 10.

The casual restaurant features traditional Turkish dishes with lamb dishes and kabobs playing a major role on the menu. The service was efficient but friendly and the meals were well priced.  They also get quite a crowd here. Even past the typical lunch period, the restaurant was full.


Lamb, salad and roasted pepper with traditional bread made a delicious lunch at Hasir.



Entree portions are large enough to share.

After a delicious lunch we walked past several other eateries that were also part of the Hasir group including a Hasir Express.


We stopped into a local bakery and treated ourselves to some just baked baklava—delicious!


We weren’t really hungry but the pastry looked so good we had to stop in.

On our way back to the Ubahn, we took a detour at the Istanbul Supermarket—an enormous Turkish grocery fronted by fresh produce stands.


From the fresh produce outside, to the bounty within, this supermarket has everything a well-stocked kitchen needs.



Tea time!

The market had everything from meats, cheeses, canned and packaged goods, to walls of teas and spices. I would have happily filled my shopping bag had we not been staying in a hotel on this trip.  Perhaps next time!





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