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Kreuzberg, Berlin

Germany's insider take:

Boxed in on two sides on the West German side of the Wall in the years following the war, Kreuzberg was somewhat isolated from the rest of West Berlin and became a world unto itself. Packed with slightly crumbling tenements, it was affordable, if not downright cheap, and therefore popular with newly arrived Turkish immigrants as well as punks and anarchists from around the world. Always an alternative enclave, it lost some of its luster in the years after the Wall fell and eastern neighborhoods such as Prenzlauer Berg drew the crowds. But with the latter in the final phases of gentrification, local magazines are heralding the return of Kreuzberg's cool factor. Bergmannstrasse and Oranienstrasse, both lined with cafés, bars, and restaurants, are popular with students and hipsters. Meanwhile, the neighborhood has remained multicultural. The open-air Türkischer Markt (Turkish Market) stretches along the Maybachufer every Tuesday and Friday. Closer to Mitte, Daniel Libeskind's Jewish Museum is one of Berlin's most architecturally significant new buildings (9-14 Lindenstrasse; 49-30-2599-3300;

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