Krumme Lanke & Schlachtensee

· Friday July 11, 2014

Lakes in Berlin - everybody's got a favourite. For reasons of convenience, laziness and ultimately the desire to be surrounded by other sweating bodies on a 30-degree day, Krumme Lanke and Schlachtensee have become the lake of choice for most of us living south of the Spree. They may be connected by a narrow strait of water but these two lakes have proudly maintained their own names and characteristics.

Krumme Lanke's most distinctive feature is the 25-foot sloped tree that hangs precariously over the lake's southwestern corner. Some genius built steps up the tree years ago so you can reach the highest point with ease, but it's resulted in a Wet 'n' Wild-esque scene surrounding the area. It's worth it, though, because when you hit the water you'll know there are no Sturgeon waiting beneath the surface. That's right, Sturgeon. Because if the meat salad vibes of hundreds of naked youths didn't put you off Berlin's easiest to reach lakes, the giant catfish lurking beneath the surface of Schlactensee might.

Rumour has it one once ate a child but let's face it, that kid was a victim of something more sinister than a huge fish. So sit back with your disposable BBQ, chill your beers in the shallow water and hold a small vigil before you launch yourself into the water. Or get adventurous – give yourself an extra half-hour on the train and you can be away from the crowds, catfish and… corpses.