Berlin knows how to do Christmas properly. From mid-November, the grey German capital is covered in gaudy lights and plastic trees, with hundreds of stalls selling boozy treats, currywurst and gluhwein. Try the Feuerzangenbowle – rum-soaked sugar set alight and dripped into mulled wine – with caution. After a couple of sips you’ll be as gone as your gran after too many sherries. visitberlin.de/en
Put your best foot forward and head to shoe brand Camper's cosy, compact boutique digs in East Berlin. Casa Camper, in the vibrant Mitte quarter, it's all clean wooden floors and minimalism, while former El Bulli head chef Albert Raurich does storming Asian-style tapas in the Dos Paillos restaurant below if you’re feeling the after-effects of the Feuerzangenbowle. casacamper.
Head to slick techno club Watergate if you want to continue the party from Friday….to er, Sunday lunchtime. There’s a terrace with one of the best views over the river Spree and a showy light show upstairs, and the club continues to draw in some big name DJs. Our advice? Wear sunglasses to avoid coming out after a 72-hour session looking like you’ve been dredged from the bottom of the Spree. water-gate.de