Flea markets in Berlin, they have them most any square near the stations, the ones I have been to most often are the ones are Rathaus Schöneberg in front and alongside the Rathaus itself. On Saturdays they are mostly food vendors, groceries, housegoods like candles, soap or paper, just all kinds of things. On Sundays they are more other kind of goods like electronics, toys, clothes, games, books, again almost anything you can scrounge around through but less of the food vendors and grocers. Also I have been to one in Wedding near the stations, construction ramps and like had been left out from during the week but it was a beautiful day and everybody was out, children and families, young people, old people, all colours, goods from around the world. Its great to walk along with a beer, talking and laughing, having a good time, and just hang out for the day. I almost always buy something whether I really need it or not.
A little tea glass from Russia, a stuffed animal from China, silk napkins with hand made lace just one for the beauty of it...its just the fun of being there. I learned to bargain, never accepting the first price. This usually works with Turkish vendors, they happily seem to want to haggle over items. The first time when I didn´t over a crystal figurine the guy asked me where I was from, and he just laughed. He let me pay the too much amount, then gave me a pair of earrings anyway because he noticed I´d just gotten my ears pierced again. There used to be a famous on at Brandenburger Tor but honestly I have not checked recently to see. In any case, just look for them, Saturdays and Sundays at most any square or sometimes a certain straße, have small change and a few cloth bags to carry your goods. One can pick up great low priced souvenirs at flea markets.
There's no better place to experience Berlin way of life than on a food market in Kreuzberg or Schöneberg. The multi cultural atmosphere and the different smells on these markets are wonderful. I love them!
What to buy: Fruit, vegetables, spices, cheese, meat, flowers... whatever!
What to pay: Not a lot!
This is one of Berlins many christmas markets. The only one with an general admission of 1Euro. It is still full of Berliners and visitors. The organisers take care of selecting only the nicest, classiest and most inventive sellers of art, food, spices, decorativ stuff etc. It is a so called High End X-Mas Market.
What to buy: not only to buy, to eat and drink: seafood, hot wine, champagne, wine...great for x-mas gift ideas.
What to pay: It depends on what you have in your wallet
The company called Birlik Market and run by a Turk, sells fresh fruits and vegetables from tables put along Potsdamerstra?e. There are mostly common fruits and vegetables, I mean non-exotic ones. Some of them were sold at low, discount price.
What to buy: Fresh fruits and vegetables.
What to pay: Average prices. For example in February apples cost 1.00 - 2.00 ? per kilo, oranges 0.99 ? per kilo, tomatoes 2.10 ? per kilo.
At the eastern end Bergmannstraße there was "Markthalle" on the left (official name: "Marheinekehalle") with various food sold including Greek and French cheese, Asian and other spices, Turkish vegetables and fruits etc.
There were stalls put on the street outside the Markthalle were some locals (mainly Turks, I suppose) sold some cheap clothes. Walk, look and enjoy the spirit of Kreuzberg.
What to buy: Some ethnic/exotic food in Markthalle. I didn't found anything interesting to buy outside, at local flea market.
What to pay: Reasonable or low prices.
You had to select an appropriate type for the shop but its not just food items here. Golden Rajah is conveniently located if you live in the area, has friendly staff, basic ethnic needs for cooking as well as home decorations and clothing. Also foreign language DVDs and videos especially those from India. They have a nice selection of fish, though its mostly frozen and imported of course, rices, beans, coconut milk and the like.
Berlin has a large immigrant population but it isn't as easy to obtain ethnic foods if you live outside of a more ethnic neighborhood. But that is the life, most times if I am shopping for a special meal I visit shops all across the city looking for ingredients. Golden Rajah, just a short walk from our flatblock, has most of the things I need at any given time.
What to buy: The special item I was looking for was fresh okra, and herbs like lemongrass and cilantro. In season, produce usually comes in on Mondays and that's the best day to get the freshest selection.
What to pay: That depends on your needs, but prices are very reasonable depending on the item and how difficult it is to ship. Most items are imported from India and China and other countires in Asia.
The outdoor market by the Deutsches Historiches Museum is quite lively with a good selection of clothing items, art, knickknacks, souvineers, and good sausages.
What to buy: I found an excellent painting I could fit in my suitcase
In every neighborhood you have markets or stores to buy food and drink. Most have the same or similar stuff unless it is a specialty shop just for an item like cheese, tea or meat for example. Of the ones I know:
Aldi´s is the cheapest in prices but the items are most limited in what you can find, mostly basics like cheese and bread, sausages, and some vegetables, candy, pasta, paper goods. Sometimes they have clothes, household goods, frozen foods and fresh meats, but when they ship in they can get sold out fast. For example, they had just received shipment in of mushrooms, cheap price. I bought as much as possible because I knew it might be a while before they got more, and also other people were taking advantage of the special also. Each Aldí´s may have different products also, and somewhat cheaper quality goods. Cheapest
Kaiser´s, has been around Germany for a while. Its a very popular change of stores, it has more selections that a market like Aldi´s. Most have a meat shop and backery inside, more international items, but the prices are more expensive. But its worth it if you are having a special dinner or party and dont have so much time to shop around or wait for shipments to come in. Moderate prices
Reichelt´s is even larger than Kaiser´s most times, even more international items, fresh meat shop, backery and lots of frozen foods and other selections. It also has longer open hours than some others. Moderate prices
Spar I have seen mostly in smaller neighborhoods, its a solid favorite. If I am looking for a special item for cooking and dont have much time to shop around, I usually go to Spar because its more reliable. They do have fresh meat shop also. Moderate prices
What to buy: Each of the above also have wine and beer, some liquors as well. Cleaning products and some toiletry items. There are others markets like Lindl´s and Plus, and some others, but these are the ones I know more about.
I always take at least cloth shopping bag with me just in going around in case I need to buy something. If I am going seriously shopping a take a lot for carrying with. At these stores they charge -.25 for a plastic bag, or you can buy a cloth one for usual 1.00.