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Berlin campaign: Get out of the center


Yes, that bucolic scene is actually in bustling Berlin

Berlin's outer districts are angling for a bigger share of visitor interest and spending with a campaign labeled 'Ab ins B!' or 'Off to the B!' referring to areas outside the city's A-zone, the central area where most famous sights are found.

The A-zone is roughly within the circular route of the S-Bahn commuter trains that circle and cross the city; it's where the Brandenburg Gate, Reichstag and famous museums are located, as well as the main shopping areas, such as Alexanderplatz and the Kurfurstendamm. It's the area that struggles at times with over-tourism.

The campaign is spearheaded by Jana Friedrich, head of the tourism board for Spandau, one of the B-zone districts. The B-zone includes nine of the city's 12 districts; all were originally independent or suburban towns. All are well-connected to the central districts by subway and bus.

Friedrich told The Guardian (UK) that “The idea behind ‘Ab ins B!’ was to promote what the areas outside the center have to offer,” says Friedrich. “We tested the idea on a local level, initially, but it was so successful that we’re now looking at ways to heighten awareness of these lesser-visited areas for overseas tourists. For now, the Ab ins B! section of the Visit Berlin site (also available in English) contains detailed information about each of the B-zone neighborhoods and their attractions.”

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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