BERLIN.

Berlin is an aggressively modern capital which doesn’t forget about its roots. It’s been shaped by history, something you can experience around every corner, but managed to find its own course in the recent years. It’s no exaggeration to say that Berlin is one of the most complicated capitals out there, offering you countless shades and hues, depending on where you go and what are you after. Whether you’re looking for traditional, laid-back beer gardens, or the most avant-garde art galleries in the whole of Europe, Berlin has it. This ability to combine seemingly contradictory features is the trademark of Berlin – the locals abide by their motto “live and let live”, and nothing is too crazy for Berlin. Therefore, if you’re looking for a city which will allow you to experience the whole spectrum of emotions, from nostalgia in many of the museums, to euphoria in dozens of nightclubs, Berlin is the place to go. If there is anything Berlin doesn’t offer, it’s boredom.

Money Saving Tips

Money Saving Tips

Best Period to Visit Berlin

Best Period to Visit Berlin

Accomodation Tips for Berlin

Accomodation Tips

Getting Around Berlin

Getting Around Berlin

Top 10 Things to See and Do in Berlin

Top 10 Things to See and Do in Berlin

Other Things to See and Do

Other Things to See and Do

Money Saving Tips

Get the Museum Pass

Until not so long ago, many museums in Berlin, especially those of the UNESCO-listed “Museum Island”, were having free nights, where you could enter without a fee after a certain hour. Unfortunately, this is no longer available, but instead you can get a reasonably-priced pass for €24, which allows you access to over fifty different museums.

Fix Up a Budget Plan

If you are not sure if you can handle daily spendings without severely hurting your bank account balance, make sure to make a plan for yourself before you even begin your trip. Calculate how much you need to spend daily on food, attractions, public transport et cetera. You will be positively surprised by how much easier it will be to save money.

Visit Turkish Markets

On Saturday evenings, Turkish markets open around the town and provide a cheap alternative for getting fresh fruits and vegetables. Make sure to look around at every stall to find the best prices. You should also remember to haggle, as the sellers are often in the mood to lower their prices quite a bit.

Stock Up on Liquor

Drinking out in Berlin might get quite expensive, so why not bring the party to your apartment or hotel and buy something to drink with your friends before. Aldi provides a good range of different liquors at quite an affordable price, but you can also look through other markets to find the best offers available.

Drink Tap Water

A considerable amount of money is always spent on soda and juices to drink. To avoid that, you might want to consider drinking tap water instead, which is under very strict control in Germany and as such is healthy and good to drink. If you still fear for the quality of water, you can always get a water filter.

Use a Bike

If you plan on getting around the city a lot, try using a bike instead of a car or the public transport. In Berlin, there are plenty of cycling routes and parks where you can ride around in tranquillity. Moreover, riding a bike is a good way to burn excess calories, allowing you to skip the gym for some time.

Visit the Mauerpark on Sunday

For some free entertainment, take a walk to the Mauerpark every Sunday. This outdoor amphitheatre hosts various music events, as well as karaoke sessions, allowing you to have some fun with friends. There is also a flea market set up there, where you can search for food and local products.

Save on Accommodation

Staying at an expensive hotel or renting an apartment is sure to drain your budget for the vacation quickly. Why not try a hostel instead, which is not any worse in its quality of accommodation than hotels, but is considerably cheaper. Many hostels also provide free breakfast and have a bar where you can hang out with friends.

Visit Friedrichshain District for Food

If you prefer eating out rather than making dinner for yourself, you might want to visit this part of the city of Berlin. There are plenty of small-time, local diners, mostly providing pizza and kebab, which is quite popular in Berlin. For only €3,50 you can get a tasty pizza – not a slice, but a whole ten-inch pizza pie.

Grab a Beer on the Street

Combine sightseeing with drinking through one of the many free walking tours of the city, provided by locals themselves. After such a tour, you can grab yourself a beer from some little shop and sit on a bench near a street. It is fully legal in Berlin to do so, and do not worry – there are plenty of others who do the same.

Best Period to Visit Berlin

Tourism

The prime tourist season in Berlin is during the late spring and summer. This is when the capital of Germany is the most crowded, and also when the festival and events are the most energetic. However, if you'd rather explore Berlin in a more relaxed and calm atmosphere, then fall and winter is when most of the tourists leave the city.

Weather

Berlin offers mild and pleasant temperatures between March through May – that’s when the parks are green, and everything is blooming, which makes it the most pleasant period for a visit. The city is the warmest from June to September, with around 24°C highs, and the coldest from November to early April, with around -2°C lows.

Money

Winter and fall is when the crowds subside, which also means substantial savings on accommodation, food and some attractions for those who don't mind the off-season atmosphere. Late spring and summer is the most expensive time to be in Berlin.

Events

Berlin International Film Festival (February)
MaerzMusik Festival (March)
Formula E Championship, Berlin ePrix (May)
Carnival of Cultures (May)
Fête de la Musique (June 21)
Berlin Fashion Week (June-July)
Lesbian and Gay City Festival (July)
International Berlin Beer Festival (August)
Berlin Marathon (September)
Oktoberfest (late September-October)
Festival of Lights (October)
Jazzfest Berlin (November)
Christmas Markets (December)
Silvester in Berlin (December 31)

Accomodation Tips

Apartments

Serviced apartments are a viable alternative to hotels, with some serious advantages. In addition to the higher degree of privacy, they offer a better value for your money, especially in the case of large groups or families.

Budget (1-2 star) hotels

Budget hotels in Berlin are perfect for those of you who are looking for savings wherever possible. While they don't offer any fancy facilities, they are comfortable enough. 1-star and 2-star hotels in Berlin can be booked for as low as €10 per night.

Standard (3-4 star) hotels

Standard hotels may be a bit more expensive than their budgetary counterparts, but the comfort and service they offer are usually worth the extra expense. Additionally, in most cases, their location is much more attractive. Nightly rates for standard hotels in Berlin start around €40.

Luxury hotels in Berlin

Luxury hotels in Berlin are known for their unmatched service, impressive facilities and amenities, as well as the most convenient location. These hotels are ready to satisfy even the most demanding guests and offer nothing but perfection.

Getting Around Berlin

Car and Motorcycle

While it is possible to drive around Berlin with a car or a motorbike, it is recommended to search for other means of transportation, as frequent traffic jams and expensive parking make driving around a hassle. If you really want to use your own vehicle, there is a wide variety of international rental services around the city. You should also keep in mind that Central Berlin is a restricted low-emission zone, meaning you will be required to have a special sticker in order to enter. You will be fined €80 if you are caught without one, so make sure to buy one online if your car is applicable.

Taxi

While taxis are best avoided during the daytime, especially during the rush hours, the fares in Berlin are not as bad as they could have been. If you really need to get yourself from point A to point B during the night and you can’t find any public transport near you, you can order a taxi by phone. The flag fall in Berlin is €3,90, and an additional €2 per kilometre up to 7km, and €1,50 for each additional kilometre beyond that. It is also customary to tip the driver in Berlin, and not tipping is frowned upon.

Bus

While buses are often slow and prone to being stuck in traffic jams, they allow a cheap route which is quite useful for sightseeing. The most useful routes are the 100 and 200 routes, which run between 4:30 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. There are also a couple of night buses with a number N in front of them, operating from 12:30 a.m. until morning.

Bicycle

With its plentiful cycling routes and parks, as well as with its limited vehicle movement in the centre, Berlin is quite a cyclist-friendly city. There are more than 650km of dedicated cycling routes in the city, making it a great way of getting around from attraction to attraction, as well as exploring local neighbourhoods. Make sure to keep a watchful eye on the traffic as you cross the street with your bike, as many drivers often disregard cyclists and drive as if they weren’t there. To avoid unnecessary danger, better slow down before an intersection.

Tram

While the trams operate almost exclusively in the eastern side of Berlin, they are quite useful as they link the important landmarks of the city. The trams with an M in front of their number run 24/7, which is also handy. The line M1 is especially useful, as it links the Prenzlauer Berg with the Museum Island, riding through the Hackescher Markt.
Each tram has its own ticket machine, which accepts cash only, so do not worry about buying tickets before.

U-Bahn

The U-Bahn, or just metro, is the quickest way to get around in Berlin. The U-Bahn provides fast transport between 4 a.m. and 12:30 a.m., as well as throughout the night on Fridays, Saturdays and on holidays.

Tickets and Passes

One ticket passes – available in any kiosk as well as on buses, trams, and inside of U-Bahns, these tickets are available for AB, BC, or ABC fare zones. The AB tickets are valid for two hours and cover most of the city, with the exception of Potsdam and Schönefeld Airport.
Tageskarte – valid for 24 hours, this day pass is the easiest way to save money when using public transport. It will allow you to take all forms of public transport until 3 a.m. the following day.
Kurzstreckenticket – valid for three stops on the U-Bahn and S-Bahn and six stops on bus or tram, this pass is especially useful during short trips. Keep in mind that you cannot change between methods of transportation.
Wochenkarte – A week pass, valid for seven days. The wochenkarte allows you to take along with you another adult and up to three children of age up to fourteen for free after 8 p.m from Monday to Friday, and all day on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays.

Top 10 Things to See and Do in Berlin

Skip-the-line Pergamon and New Museum Tour

This three-hour-long tour with a well-accustomed guide will take you along the halls of the New Museum and the Pergamon without having to wait in long lines. The vast collections of both of the museums will surely provide more than enough pieces of history and art to look and marvel at.

Half-Day Berlin Third Reich Tour

A small-group tour which takes approximately three to four hours to accomplish and will take you along the streets of Berlin with a guide to retell you the story of Berlin during the WWII. With visits both to the Memorial to Homosexuals and Memorial to the Murdered Jews, the tour shows you the history of the persecuted people of that time.

One-hour City Cruise

This tour takes only an hour to accomplish, which is quite handy if you do not have much time to spare. This one takes you along such landmarks as the Reichstag, the Berliner Dom, and the Museum Island, which holds many museums, all of them placed on the UNESCO world heritage site list.

Panoramapunkt Berlin

For one of the best views of Berlin’s cityscape, make sure to visit the Panoramapunkt, which is located more than a hundred meters above the ground in the Kollhoff-Tower, Potsdamer Platz. The tower also has the fastest elevator in Europe, which is a unique experience in itself, as well as a 360-degree observation terrace.

Berlin Segway Tour

Providing a comfortable way to ride around the streets of Berlin, this tour allows you to hop on a Segway if you dislike tiring walking tours. The tour takes you along such attractions as the Berlin Wall and the Brandenburg Gate, along with eight other participants to ensure an attentive experience.

Berlin Sightseeing Cruise

Allowing you to sit back and relax with an included lunch and a drink, this three-hour-long cruise down the Spree River will show you the history of the city with an ongoing narrative which plays as the boat cruises down the river. The tour also provides a two-course lunch along with beverages, all at an affordable price.

Berlin Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Tour

With a 24-hour pass that comes with the ticket, this tour allows you to take your time with the sightseeing of Berlin. You can create your own plan and visit the attractions at your own pace with eighteen stops around the city, placed near the most important landmarks such as Checkpoint Charlie.

Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Tour

Located near the city of Berlin, the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp was one of the first concentration camps in Germany built by the Third Reich. Learn important facts about the history of oppression during World War II, along with an audio commentary. A train ticket from Berlin is also included.

'An Evening at Charlottenburg Palace' Palace Tour

If you are a music enthusiast, make sure to take part in this tour which will showcase you a concert by the Berlin Residence Orchestra. Moreover, a panoramic view of Berlin is provided as well as a three-course dinner before the concert, along with a self-guided tour of the largest palace in Berlin.

Small Group Berlin Food Tour

Combine sightseeing and eating with this exclusive tour of East Berlin, along with included food, wine, and bottled water. A guide will also provide you with information on the history of East Berlin, along with a visit to the East Side Gallery and the Berlin Wall, and information on the cuisine of Germany.

Other Things to See and Do

The Berliner Dom

This Italian Renaissance-style former royal court church will leave you standing in awe with its gorgeous exterior, but wait until you see the interior too, as it brims with gorgeous artworks of renowned painters from across the years. Make sure to visit the church during services, as only then it is free of charge.

Soviet War Memorial

Located in the Treptower Park, the massive Soviet War Memorial commemorates the death of five thousand Soviet soldiers who died in the Battle of Berlin, which culminated the Second World War. It was designed by a Soviet architect Yakov Belopolsky and includes a gorgeous entranceway made out of red marble.

Schlachtensee Lake

Placed along the fringes of the Grunewald Forest, the lake is only about thirty walking minutes from the city. The lake has clear water and plenty of spots to sit down with a picnic basket. There are also plenty of steamboat cruises, as well as rowboats for hire if you prefer a more active way of spending time.

Berliner Philharmonie

Make sure to visit the Berliner Philharmonie every Tuesday at 1 p.m. During that time, the Philharmonie gets full of classical musicians who play concerts free of charge. There are also many students of the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler music school, who showcase their talents every week.

Hackescher Höfe

If you are looking for a place to drink an afternoon coffee in peace and tranquillity, take a hike to the Hackescher Höfe, which is a warren of eight restored courtyards, located in the central Mitte. There is also an arrangement of small-time local shops around the premises, perfect for picking a souvenir to take home.

Brandenburg Gate

Being surely the most iconic landmark and tourist attraction of Berlin, the Brandenburg Gate was made in 1791 as a royal gateway to the city. During the Cold War, the Brandenburg Gate became a symbol of a divided nation, as it was a part of the Berlin Wall, but is still a monument worth seeing with its gorgeous sculptures.

Berlin Wall

With a memorial dedicated to the victims who died along the Berlin Wall, the Wall itself is a place worth visiting. The Berlin Wall Memorial is placed along the Bernauer Strasse and is the best place to learn the history of the barrier which divided post-war Germany into two and the impact it had on the local people.

Checkpoint Charlie

Being one of the most well-renowned monuments of what could have happened if Cold War had not been stopped, Checkpoint Charlie was the main gateway for diplomats and people from abroad between the two Berlins in post-war Germany. It was also a place of a stand-off between the US and the Soviet Union, which could have turned into the next world war.

Arkonaplatz

Take a trip to one of the cosiest flea markets in Berlin, located on the Arkonaplatz. The flea market is quite a bit smaller than the one located in the Mauerpark, but don’t worry – the selection is great, minus the crowds. With plenty of local families selling their handmade products, this place is sure worth a visit.

Nowkölln Flowmarkt

If you are searching for some more eclectic items at flea markets, such as fashion and ornaments, make sure to visit the Nowkölln Flowmarkt, open every third Sunday of the month from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. A plenty of locals set up their stalls here, presenting old 1950s ornaments and modern, hand-crafted products.

Topographie des Terrors

Visit the once feared headquarters of the Gestapo, a secret police service of Nazi Germany, which nowadays exhibits documents on the terror of the Third Reich. Open from spring to autumn, the Topography of Terror provides self-guided tours around the grounds, sure to chill your spine.

Sachsenhausen

While you sure can take a guided tour through the Sachsenhausen concentration camp, it is much cheaper to just go around the place by yourself. The camp is located near Berlin, and you will have to get a train ticket to get there, but it is sure worth it, as it is the first concentration camp in Nazi Germany.

Kollwitzplatz

Located in the Prenzlauer Berg, the food market of Kollwitzplatz showcases some of the gourmet delights produced by local artisans. Taking place on each Thursday and Saturday of every month, excluding holidays, the food market is a colourful place to visit, even if you are not planning on eating anything.

Street Art

Berlin is famous all over the world for its vibrant and exquisite street art and graffiti, with plenty of international artists leaving their mark, including ROA, Os Gemeos, Blu, JR, and Pure Evil. Make sure to keep a watchful eye on every mural, especially around the Boxhagener Platz and the eastern Kreuzberg.

The Tiergarten and Tempelhofer Park

If you are looking for a spot to visit with your family where you can hang out on a blanket and have a peaceful picnic, make sure to visit one of these two parks for a romantic, tranquil experience. You might want to stay away from Mauerpark though, as it is one of the most popular parks and attracts loads of tourists.

Holocaust Memorial

Pay your respects to the victims of the Holocaust and visit the haunting Holocaust Memorial. The Memorial was made to commemorate the death of over six million Jews who were killed during the Second World War and is filled with a giant field of concrete slabs which resemble sarcophagi.

Museum Island

Placed at the tip of the Spree Island, the Museum Island comprises of five museums arranged close together, including the Pergamonmuseum, Neues Museum, Alte Nationalgalerie, Altes Museum, and Bodemuseum. The museums themselves require a ticket to enter, but you can still marvel at their gorgeous architecture.

East Side Gallery

The East Side Gallery is the longest still-remaining section of the Berlin Wall, kept as a monument to freedom after the collapse of the Wall. In 1989, shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall, more than a hundred artists from all over the world came and turned it into a gallery covered with their works.

Reichstag

Being home to the parliament of Germany, the Reichstag has a gorgeous roof terrace with a free elevator ride, providing a spectacular view of the land and cityscapes. While at it, marvel at the glass dome, designed by Norman Foster, which is located inside of the historic building.

Guggenheim Museum

As is customary with many other tourist-oriented cities all over the world, Berlin has its own Guggenheim Museum, which is home to a vast collection of contemporary art with frequent rotating exhibits, made by artists all over the world. Make sure to visit the museum on Mondays, when it is free of charge.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the best hotels for Berlin city break?

    Our list of the best hotels in Berlin are: Scandic Berlin Potsdamer Platz, Radisson Blu Hotel Berlin, H4 Hotel Berlin Alexanderplatz, Novotel Berlin Mitte and Maritim Hotel Berlin. Discover the full list of best hotels in Berlin.

  • What are the luxury hotels in Berlin?

    The finest examples of luxury hotels in Berlin include Hilton Berlin, Pullman Berlin Schweizerhof, Steigenberger Hotel am Kanzleramt, Sheraton Berlin Grand Hotel Esplanade, Nhow Berlin, Eurostars Berlin and The Westin Grand Berlin. Discover the full list of luxury hotels in Berlin.

  • What are the cheap hotels in Berlin?

    Those trying to visit Berlin on a tight budget will find everything they need in hotels such as Hampton by Hilton Berlin City West, Titanic Comfort Mitte, Leonardo Hotel Berlin, Best Western Hotel am Spittelmarkt, Holiday Inn Express Berlin City Centre West, Novotel Suites Berlin City Potsdamer Platz and Hotel AMANO Grand Central. Discover the full list of Cheap hotels in Berlin.

  • What is the best period to visit Berlin for a city break?

    Taking factors such as weather, crowds and prices, the best months to visit Berlin for a city break are April, May, August and September.

  • What are top 5 things to see and do in Berlin?

    Berlin offers plenty of exciting attractions and things to do. Must-sees in Berlin include: Half-Day Berlin Third Reich Tour, One-hour City Cruise, Panoramapunkt Berlin, Berlin Segway Tour and Berlin Sightseeing Cruise.

  • How much does an Berlin city pass cost?

    A city pass in Berlin costs around €82.

  • How much does public transport in Berlin cost?

    24-hour ticket for public transport in Berlin costs around €7.70.

  • What are the best night clubs in Berlin?

    The best night clubs in Berlin include: Berghain, SchwuZ, Anomalie Art Club, KitKat and Chalet.

  • What are the best bars in Berlin?

    Judging on the reviews and customer opinions, the best bars in Berlin are: ORA, Madame Claude, Clärchens Ballhaus, Hops & Barley and The Black Lodge.

  • What are the best places to eat in Berlin?

    Your choice of the best restaurants in Berlin may vary depending on your taste, however, Cadadia, Flamingo Fresh Food Bar, La Bolognina and helloGoodPie are some of the most popular choices.

  • What are the top 5 best restaurants in Berlin?

    Top 5 restaurants in Berlin include: Facil, Rutz, Cookies Cream, Mrs. Robinson's and Restaurant Tim Raue.