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There are few cities in the world that transform themselves as profoundly from season to season as Berlin. The purgatorial winter, with its lightless days and frigid nights, gives way to four months of balmy intoxication. Cafe and gallery culture spills out into graffitied alleyways; the parks fill with techno D.J.s, nudists and picnicking families; and young people arrive by the planeload from Brooklyn, Copenhagen and East London to take part in an open-air night-life scene that is equal parts “Paris Is Burning” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” But even as the hype of the last decade has made the city a magnet for tourists, Berlin remains a place for the strange and libertine, where the radical left still nips at the heels of neoliberalism, where snapping photos in public is often more taboo than smoking a joint, and where people seldom ask what it is you “do.”

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Berlin Germany Europe