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MUSHROOM SEASON IS UPON US — EXPLORING THE BEELITZER HEILSTÄTTEN WITH FORTUNA FOREST

MUSHROOM SEASON IS UPON US — EXPLORING THE BEELITZER HEILSTÄTTEN WITH FORTUNA FOREST

Fall is just around the corner and with it comes one of the most memorable seasons for hiking. Meadows and fields glow in the rich yellows of goldenrod, trees are full of ripe plums, pears and apples, and, perhaps what’s most exciting, after those first long-awaited rainy days, among leaves and moss, on sunny clearings, roadsides and forest floors, we can finally say: mushroom season has begun. There is hardly anything in which Yulia and I can lose ourselves so obsessively and passionately as mushroom foraging each fall. We even bought a small gas stove and pans two years ago – and with butter, thyme, salt and pepper in your pocket, you can make the best mushroom pan dish right there in the forest. Folks, how much more perfect could life be? Southwest of Berlin lies the town of Beelitz, which is where our early summer asparagus comes from. Historically, this place is also significant, as it used to be one of the largest health resorts in Germany, the Beelitzer Heilstätten. The asylum buildings, of which there are around 60, cover an area of 200 hectares and have fallen into varying degrees of disrepair over the years. Via the treetop path, you can see the Alpenhaus and the clinic, among others, where a small forest has already spread over the roofs. The windows are smashed, and graffiti can be found on the walls.

Start from Zoologischer Garten on the RE7 regional train directly to the Beelitzer Heilstätten station. From there it’s only a few minutes to reach the first section of the forest. Admittedly, it’s a rather young monoculture forest, mainly consisting of pine trees and a few birch trees. Nevertheless, it’s wonderful to hike there and indeed, as promised, to find mushrooms. After about three kilometers you’ll arrive at the village of Beelitz. Even more beautiful, though, is the open stretch along the Nieplitz River, surrounded by wild meadows and ferns. If you want, you should harvest a generous handful of watercress from the river. Due to its nutrient content, watercress is said to be one of the healthiest foods in the world, and it’s great in a pesto with mushrooms. Eventually as you make your way through the forest, you’ll approach the end of the hike and the highlight of our tour. The interior of the sanatorium, with its impressive meter-long corridor and beautiful dining room, can still be used for events before the building goes into hibernation for renovations. In early October (01 & 02.10.2022) we’ll again, alongside Fortuna Forest, invite artists to fill this place with experimental music, food and film. There will also be a tour to explore the buildings and their history. More info and tickets coming soon. For those who want to go sooner or simply combine the first weekend of October with a hike and mushroom hunting, you can check out our Komoot tour here.

Text & Photos: Laura Iriondo

Walk by Beelitz-Heilstätten – you can find the tour on Komoot here.

Fortuna Forest is hosting a multi-sensory experience at Beelitzer Heilstätten on 01. & 02.10.2022. Follow them on Instagram for further announcements.

@fortuna.forest

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EXCLUSIVE WORKOUTS AND BOUTIQUE STUDIOS — BUILD YOUR EXERCISE ROUTINE WITH THE CLASSPASS APP

EXCLUSIVE WORKOUTS AND BOUTIQUE STUDIOS — BUILD YOUR EXERCISE ROUTINE WITH THE CLASSPASS APP

From barre to boxing and calisthenics to circuit pump, there are enough workouts these days that you could do a class every day and never repeat yourself. Challenge accepted? Then you might want to try out the ClassPass app, which lets you book a huge variety of workouts all over Berlin (and beyond) hassle free. Using the platform is dead easy: you can search and browse classes across the city, view the schedules and reserve your place by using credits that come with your monthly plan. You can visit the same studio as often as you want and there’s no signing in or scanning when you arrive for class. We tested out the 8am spinning session at Becycle in Mitte, spending 45 minutes getting on a sweat to pounding techno and pulsing LED lighting. Intense and full of positive energy, the class was just the boost we needed to kick off the weekday (our thighs are still burning three days later). We also dropped by the sleek and stylish Beyond Bln Studio in Kreuzberg for an early-evening reformers pilates class. Using a special spring-loaded machine, you can choose your own adventure by adjusting the intensity and fine-tuning your stretches.

The classes gave us a taste for beautifully-designed spaces, something you’ll also find at airy and modern Hagius (movement classes and yoga) and zen-filled OHIA (meditation and mindfulness). All these and around 400 other Berlin studios and clubs can be booked using the app. And if you are heading out of town, you can keep your sport routine going by using ClassPass in 30 countries all over the world. With all these options you’re ready to spin, stretch and flex your way to reaching your fitness goals (or not: it’s about the journey, remember).

Text: Scott Moss / Photos: Waldemar Salesski, Robert Rieger & ClassPass

ClassPass

ClassPass is currently offering a special deal: you have the chance to get a one-month free trial instead of their regular two week-promo. Head to the link to sign-up.

@classpassdach

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A DREAMY WALK AROUND VOLKSPARK REHBERGE — RECOMMENDED BY RUTH BARRY

A DREAMY WALK AROUND VOLKSPARK REHBERGE — RECOMMENDED BY RUTH BARRY

When I first started walking in Volkspark Rehberge, I’d pack a flask of coffee and go early in the morning. With barely anyone else around, I could walk alone as the sun stretched higher, the light dappling through the trees. One or two people might already be swimming cold laps in Plötzensee, but usually the ducks and moorhens paddled undisturbed. I looked for the boars, sometimes eating pondweed, sometimes lying flat out, their handsome bellies rising and falling as they slept on heaps of browned leaves. The sun would illuminate the red berries on the limbs of yew trees, like little lanterns. Off the path, the ivy claimed fallen branches, hugging and holding them to the ground. Right now it’s especially beautiful, just before the colors start to fade and the gray seeps in, with the light still golden and the grasshoppers leaping as you walk through the dry brush. Pack a picnic, find a shady spot to enjoy it, and for a joyful minute, you’ll forget you’re still in the city.

Ruth has created three recipes for the perfect park picnic: Fennel, tomato, parmesan & basil frittataLimeade and Banana & hazelnut loaf

Text: Ruth Barry / Photos: Francesca Merlo & Savannah van der Niet

Ruth Barry is a Mitte-based baker, writer and cook. She is currently working on her first baking recipe book.

Volkspark Rehberge, Transvaalstr.160, 13351 Berlin–Wedding; map

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JOURNEY TO YOURSELF — KAILO NATURE THERAPY RETREATS IN EGYPT AND GREECE

JOURNEY TO YOURSELF — KAILO NATURE THERAPY RETREATS IN EGYPT AND GREECE

Have you ever been somewhere where time seems to stand still? The desert and seas of Egypt offer the perfect conditions for Journey to Yourself (27.09-04.10.2022), a retreat where you can connect with nature, yourself and your fellow participants. The flexible schedule includes reflective and transformative workshops like music, movement and dance with opportunities to engage with the landscape, make fire, cook together and take a sunset boat trip. You will spend two nights under the stars in the Egyptian desert and the rest in a private villa with pool. The retreat is all about you and your journey to your real self. Accompanying you on this journey is systemic nature therapist and Kailo Nature Therapy founder Olivia, who will support you in your discoveries and individual development. She also runs the Children of the Sea retreat (18-24.09.2022), where you stay for several nights on wild beaches in Greece, getting in touch with nature, the elements and yourself. Detailed information about the retreats and other events from Kailo Nature Therapy can be found here.

Text: Alison Musch / Photos: Alina Asmus

Kailo Nature Therapy 

Journey to Yourself desert and sea retreat
27.09–04.10.2022

Children of the Sea wild beach retreat
18.09–24.09.2022

@kailonaturetherapy

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MAYDA — URBAN FLOWER FARM FOR PICK-YOUR-OWN BLOOMS GROWN IN TANDEM WITH NATURE

MAYDA — URBAN FLOWER FARM FOR PICK-YOUR-OWN BLOOMS GROWN IN TANDEM WITH NATURE

The flowers sitting on your kitchen table might look lovely, but do you know where the contents of your vase actually come from? If you got your bouquet from Mayda flower farm, you’ll know precisely: right here in Berlin, from a small patch of land in the grounds of an old chapel in Pankow. Producing seasonal blooms that you can pick yourself, this 1200 sqm color-filled field is home to dahlias, carnations and peonies grown according to Slow Flower principles – a unique feat in Berlin. The idea for creating an inner-city floral oasis came from passionate growers Imke and Reuben Glaser, who started developing the quiet patch as a growing space in August 2020. The idea: make nature part of the process. Instead of pesticides, herbicides and mineral fertilizers, the pair use companion plants, cover crops and organic pest control methods to ensure good growth.

Mayda runs regular flower picking sessions where you can spend an afternoon walking around the flowers, relaxing in the beautiful greenhouse and picking a bunch to take home (the price includes 30–35 stems of your choice). There are special gatherings for families, where children can find their favorite flowers and do some insect spotting (bumble bees are guaranteed). You can also buy a flower subscription and get a bunch of seasonal flowers delivered to your door every week starting in spring. If you can’t wait that long, head to one of the upcoming sessions and make a Berlin-grown bloom of your very own.

Text: Benji Haughton / Photos: Savannah van der Niet

Mayda, Dietzgenstr.158 (behind the chapel at the Zionsfriedhof), 13158 Berlin–Rosenthal; map

@maydablumenfarm

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