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May in Berlin

Dance into May, lots of theatre and festivals without end

© visitBerlin, Foto: Dagmar Schwelle

Berlin's May has it all. Heavenly weather, open-air events and lots of public holidays. With Ascension Day on 9 May, Mother's Day on 12 May and Whitsun and Whit Monday on 19 and 20 May, there are plenty of long weekends and time to celebrate. Of course, Berlin also offers you opportunities to do so: Carnival of Cultures, Dance into May, the Theatre Meeting and the DFB Cup are just the beginning. Get ready for May 2024 in Berlin with our tips.

Tip 1: Dance the night away into May

Nightlife in Berlin
Nightlife © Getty Images, Foto: Georgijevic

Hardly any other night of the year is as eagerly awaited as the one from 30 April to 1 May. This is when the city is transformed into one big party - in warm temperatures. The best conditions for a very special experience.

  • At Das KOMPONISTENVIERTEL tanzt in den Mai, you can get active in advance. You decide what will be played at the party in the Peter Edel Education and Cultural Centre by voting online. There are 50 music titles to choose from. If you buy a ticket in advance, you will even receive a free drink as a welcome drink.
  • When it comes to Berlin dance culture, Ballhaus Wedding is of course a must. Stylistically, it goes back to the 1920s and thus musically in the direction of swing. No previous knowledge is necessary, the most important steps will be taught in a short workshop at the beginning. Afterwards, Amselfon and the Swinging Partysans will get you started.

Where: Various events throughout Berlin
When: Night from 30 April to 1 May

Tip 2: Celebrate the Carnival of Cultures with the whole world

Karneval der Kulturen
© Daniela Incoronato

On Whitsun weekend, the world is a guest in Berlin - even more so than is already the case throughout the year. The Carnival of Cultures is as much a part of the capital as currywurst or the television tower. From Friday to Whit Monday, over 2,500 groups and performers parade through the city in colourful costumes and with lots of music. And you can be there live. Because simply standing at the side of the road is not an option here. Enjoy the colourful hustle and bustle, dance through the city with your favourite groups, sample culinary delicacies and discover arts and crafts from all over the world.

By the way: Did you know that there is also a children's carnival of cultures?

Where: Start at Hermannplatz
When: 17 to 20 May

Carnival of Cultures

Tip 3: Enjoy stage art at the Theatertreffen 2024

Stage of Haus der Berliner Festspiele
Stage of Haus der Berliner Festspiele © Chiussi/Agentur StandArt

The Theatertreffen is somewhat quieter, but just as diverse as the Carnival of Cultures. Its title makes this event sound a lot more modest than it actually deserves. The event is taking place for the 61st time and this year brings 10 exciting productions from German-speaking countries to the city's stages.
In addition to classics from the world of theatre, the programme naturally also includes exciting new works and formats from outside the usual genres. A true merry month for theatre fans and all those who want to become one!

Where: House of World Cultures, John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10, Tiergarten
When: 2 to 19 May

more about Theatertreffen

Tip 4: Breathe in the spring air at the Primavera Spring Festival

Schoeneberg, Akazienkiez
© visitBerlin, Foto: Dagmar Schwelle

Schöneberg's Akazienstraße is always worth a visit, even without a special occasion. Away from the busy main street, small shops, cosy cafés and an all-round relaxed atmosphere are waiting to be discovered by you. However, it might get a little more crowded in May. That's when the Primavera Spring Festival lures the last Berliners out of hibernation and onto Akazienstraße.

Akazienstraße is then transformed into a promenade with small stalls from garden centres, asparagus farmers and local shops. The best conditions for greening up your balcony or getting in the mood for spring with art and culinary delights.

Where: Akazienstraße, Schöneberg
When: 11 and 12 May

Primavera Spring Festival

Tip 5:  Experience the DFB Cup final live in the Olympic Stadium

19.05.2018 DFB Pokalfinale Saison 2017/2018 Bayern Müchen vs Eintracht Frankfurt
© Camera4

Every year and yet it never gets boring - the DFB Cup final is not just something that football fans have marked in their diaries. Thousands of football fans flock to Berlin every year to cheer on their teams and experience one of the most important matches of the year live in person. We also have an important tip for you when it comes to live on site: Tickets are in high demand. So make sure you get a seat in the Olympic Stadium on 25 May 2024 now.

Because even if the opponents have not yet been decided, one thing is already clear: you are in for another highlight of the football season this year. Incidentally, this will be crowned by this year's European Championship EURO 2024.

Where: Olympiastadion Berlin, Olympischer Platz 3, Westend 
When: 25 May

more about the DFB-Pokalfinale

Tip 6: Discover the power of design at Berlin Design Week

© visitBerlin, Foto:Michel Blossier

If you can't wait for May, here's the right tip for you. Berlin Design Week starts at the end of April and brings 11 days of exhibitions, talks, presentations and hands-on design projects to Berlin. The theme for 2024 is Insights. It will explore the role that designers play in social change, economic innovation and tackling the major challenges of our time. More than enough programme for 11 exciting days and an excellent start to May.

Where: Various locations throughout Berlin
When: 27 April to 5 May

Berlin Design Week 

Tip 7: Discuss the future of care work at re:publica

VR Brille
© gettyimages, Foto: Westend61

In our list of the best events, one should not be missing: re:publica. The festival for the digital society is the place where the big questions of our time are discussed. So it's no wonder that bloggers, artists, scientists and many more will be gathering here from 24 to 29 May. The future will be discussed and actively shaped here and you can be part of it live.

This year's motto is "Who cares?" and asks how we want to shape education, care and care work in the broadest sense in the future. What role will AI play in this and who has control over data? You can discuss these and other questions at STATION Berlin. What are you waiting for?

Where: STATION Berlin, Luckenwalder Straße 4-6, Kreuzberg
When: 24 to 29 May

more about RE:PUBLICA

Tip 8: Mixing styles at the XJAZZ! Festival

Jazz Saxophon
© GettyImages, Foto: suteishi

Attention jazz fans: You shouldn't miss this festival. Because the XJAZZ! Festival is about nothing less than the future of jazz. And doubly so. On the one hand, the outdated image of the jazz scene is to be dusted off with cross-genre styles. So you can look forward to a mix of styles from jazz, funk, hip-hop and more. On the other hand, the future is to be taken literally, because at the XJAZZ! Festival you can experience young talents and newcomers from all over Europe.

And where could a festival of this kind take place better than in Berlin? Exactly, nowhere. A lively jazz scene is flourishing here, so it's no wonder that ten stages in Kreuzberg have been found in no time at all for the more than 70 concerts. One concert after another and all within walking distance. What more could the jazz heart want?

Where: Various venues throughout Berlin
When: 6 to 12 May

More about XJAZZ! Festival

Tip 9: Immerse yourself in a green future at the Greentech Festival

Greentech Festival - Key Visual

Bigger, better, greener - that could be the motto of Europe's largest sustainability fair. At the Greentech Festival, you can take a look into the (not too distant) future of green technologies and find out today how sustainably we will live in the future. The festival at the Messe Berlin exhibition centre brings together bright minds, innovative thinkers and everyone who is committed to a greener future.

The diverse programme is impressive: In addition to workshops, boot camps, live music, debates and public forums, you can expect plenty of ideas for a sustainable change in our lifestyle. And the best ideas will also be honoured on site. With the Green Awards, the Greentech Festival recognises the most innovative minds and honours outstanding personalities, start-ups and companies.

Where: Messe Berlin, Messedamm 22, Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf
When: 15 to 17 May

Greentech Festival

Tip 10: Celebrates their 18th birthday with the Blue Man Group

Blue Man Group
© Stage Entertainment Germany

And another absolute Berlin classic in May: the Blue Man Group. And this year is a very special one for the men in blue. Because with 18 years of playing in Berlin, they are celebrating their coming of age, so to speak. You shouldn't miss out on this. After all, the Blue Men are far from showing their age. On the contrary: as colourful, innovative and creative as on their first day, they will enchant you with a veritable firework display of comedy, concerts and spectacular effects.

Where: Stage Bluemax Theatre, Marlene-Dietrich-Platz 4, Tiergarten
When: Various dates in May

Tickets for the show

Tip 11: Discover parties, literary walks and a big spring fair on 1 May

Carnival in Berlin
Carnival in Berlin © Getty Images, Foto: Westend61

If you haven't had enough of dancing into May, here's our tip for all you party animals: At the free open air at Ritter Butzke, you can party until the early hours - starting at 1 pm. Format:B, Moonbootica and many more will provide the right music for the party.

For history buffs, we have a very special tip: the literary walk to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the Berlin Airlift. City guide Marion Feise will take you on a walk around the historic site of the airlift, Tempelhofer Feld. You will learn all kinds of exciting facts about the Airlift and gain an insight into this special time of Berlin's division through recipes, anecdotes and thrillers.

If you prefer things big, colourful and spectacular, the Berlin Spring Festival is the place to be. With over 80 attractions, the funfair on the central fairground on Kurt-Schumacher-Damm offers you everything your fairground and funfair heart desires. You can visit it until 12 May.

Where: Various locations throughout Berlin
When: 1 May

more events at 1 Mai in Berlin