51+ Things to Do in Berlin
Berlin is a huge city that has a tonne to offer. When I was researching for my trip, I was astounded by how many museums Berlin has, nevermind all the places to eat, hang out, and shop. So it was easy to compile a list of 51+ things to do in the German capital.
Note that many museums cost money – and a decent amount of money. I highly recommend looking into the Berlin Welcome Card and the Berlin Museum Pass, and calculate which one will give you the most savings. Be sure to read the inclusions and exclusions carefully!
Places to See
- Go by Bradenburg Gate. Of course you can’t visit Berlin without visiting this iconic structure.
- Check out Charlottenburg Palace. I loved Charlottenburg Palace; it was so beautiful and had some interesting interior design elements. The full ticket includes a lot to see, including the gardens and a small art museum. You can spend a decent amount of time here.
- Stop by East Side Gallery. It’s also not a visit to Berlin without seeing the infamous Berlin Wall. If you like street art, it’s a great place to see.
- See the Oberbaum Bridge. Right by East Side Gallery is this a recreation of Berlin’s 19th-century bridge, which is a “double-deck bridge.”
- See Berlin Cathedral. Berlin Cathedral is absolutely gorgeous. You can also climb to the top to get great views of the city.
- See the Berlin Television Tower. You can see the Berlin TV Tower from almost anywhere in the city. You can also go in the tower for views.
- Visit Schönhausen Palace. It’s out of the way but for another palace fix, you can head up to Schönhausen Palace.
- Pay your respects at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. The memorial is quite fascinating in its form and really begs the viewers the contemplate the Holocaust.
- See the Siegesäule (victory column). You can also go to the top of the column for more views!
- Snap a photo of Bellevue Palace. Visitors aren’t allowed inside but you can still snap a good photo of the German Federal President’s residence.
- Stop by Checkpoint Charlie. Checkpoint Charlie was a checkpoint between East and West Germany. Now it’s a popular photo spot.
- Stroll to the Gendarmenmarkt. This small square has a bunch of beautiful buildings, including the Concert Hall, French Cathedral and New Church. With so many modern buildings in Berlin, it’s like a small step back in time.
- Stroll down Bundesstrasse 2. This street is very tourist-y, no doubt. But particularly near the German History Museum, there are so many beautiful old-looking buildings. It’s also very open. If you avoid the souvenir shops and overpriced cafes, it’s a pleasant place to walk through.
Museum Island Museums:
- Pergamon Museum. The Pergamon Museum has a collection of antiquities, especially from the middle/near East. It’s the most visited museum in Berlin. Here you can see the famous Miletus Market Gate and even the Gates of Babylon! I highly recommend it. Note that you cannot buy a ticket just for this museum, but must gain entry by buying a museum island day ticket. So it’s a good idea to visit this museum earlier in the day or with a pass that grants you free access.
- Bode Museum. The Bode Museum is the beautiful rounded one you see in several Berlin photos. They have Byzantine and numismatic (currency) art.
- Old National Gallery. The Old National Gallery is an art museum. It’s actually medium-sized but has some nice gems inside.
- New Museum. The New Museum has a collection of Egyptian artefacts as well as other archaeological finds.
- Old Museum. The Old Museum is one that has artefacts from ancient Greece and Rome.
- German History Museum. I have to say that the German History Museum is one of the best museums I’ve ever been to. It has a holistic yet easily understandable history of Germany from medieval times to the fall of the wall. It’s a must visit.
- Berlin Story Bunker. The Berlin Story Bunker is a museum on Berlin’s history housed in a WWII bunker. You need an audioguide but it’s an interesting museum that tells the story of Berlin through artefacts.
- The Story of Berlin Museum. Not to be confused with the above, the Story of Berlin Museum is currently under construction and closed. It’s on the list because it got such high praise that I was so bummed I couldn’t go. Be sure to see if it’s open when you visit Berlin.
- Topography of Terror. For something more awakening, you can visit the Topography of Terror, which documents Nazi atrocities.
- DDR Museum. The DDR Museum is an interactive museum where you can “live” in East Germany.
- The Wall Museum. If seeing the Wall itself isn’t enough, there’s a museum dedicated to it as well.
- German Resistance Memorial Center. For more information on the German Resistance during the Third Reich, there’s a museum you can visit.
- Jewish Museum. Learn about Jewish history at the Jewish Museum.
- Märkisches Museum. The Märkisches Museum is another museum dedicated to the history of Berlin.
- Gemäldegalerie. The Gemäldegalerie is a museum with European paintings from the 13th-18th centuries.
- Museum Berggruen. This one isn’t spoken about much but it’s actually the State’s museum of modern art.
- Museum of Photography. The State also has a museum for photography.
- Bauhaus Archive. You can see a museum on Bauhaus (the school, not the band) in Berlin. Learn about German architecture in the German capital!
- Bröhan Museum. The Bröhan Museum is another modern art museum. I don’t know about you, but I’d love to one day return to see their Art Nouveau collection.
- Museum of Decorative Arts. The State has yet another museum, this one on decorative arts. Germany has some great porcelain and other decorative art objects.
- German Spy Museum. Sounds like fun right? In Berlin you can go to the interactive German Spy Museum.
- Berlin Botanical Gardens. It’s a trip to the outskirts of the city but if you’re interest and have time, you can also see the Berlin Botanical Gardens.
- Computer Game Museum. The name Computerspielemuseum sounds cooler. If you’re looking for something different, you can head to this museum.
- Game Science Center. Similarly, Berlin also has a Game Science Centre. It focuses on interactive technology.
- Deutsche Kinematek. If you’re into film, this offbeat museum of cinema is something to put on your bucket list.
- Natural History Museum. A lot of major cities have a natural history museum and Berlin is no exception.
- Museum for Communication. Another offbeat place to visit is the Museum for Communication, where you can learn how people communicate with one another.
- German Museum of Technology. As Germany has earned its title as a country of technology, a museum of technology is highly appropriate for its capital.
- Drink hot chocolate at Rausch Schokoladenhaus. I don’t normally recommend places to eat, but people were raving about Rausch Schokoladenhaus (“chocolate house”). I went. I had what is probably the best hot chocolate I’ve had to date! The chocolate mousse was amazing as well. You can get both and more delicious treats on their top floor cafe. Remember to buy a box of chocolate for your friends back home.
- See the Berlin Zoo. If you like zoos, the Berlin Zoo says it has the most species in any zoo worldwide.
- & also see the Aquarium. Get a combined ticket to see the Berlin Aquarium as well.
- Or alternatively go to the AquaDom. Berlin also has a place called AquaDom & SEA LIFE which hosts sea creatures as well.
- Stroll through the Tiergarten. The “Tiergarten” is the name of a large park in the centre of Berlin, much like Central Park in NYC. However this place is so much more reminiscent of an actual forest and is so charming and relaxing, especially since Berlin is such a huge city.
- Take a river tour. Go along the River Spree in a boat to get some views from the water.
- Visit the Reichstag Dome. The Reichstag Building is where German Parliament meets, and you can visit it if you register in advance. The dome on the building is another place where you can get some good city views.
- Go Base Flying. “Base Flying” is like bungee jumping – so it’s a no for me! But if you like the adrenaline, you can do such a thing in the middle of Berlin.
- Shop at KaDeWe. KaDeWe is a luxury shopping mall in Berlin. I normally wouldn’t recommend such a thing but so many Berlin and German natives say it’s worth a visit.
- Go architecture hunting. Berlin is a such a huge city, and one thing I learned is that even though beautiful buildings aren’t everywhere, they certainly are scattered everywhere. The same can be said for cute neighbourhoods. Just take your time, walk around, and see what you’re able to come across.
I usually put a section here about the different areas in each city to see, but honestly Berlin is so spread out and aside from some places I mentioned above, I wasn’t able to grasp an area/neighbourhood in the amount of time I was there.
So that’s an exhaustive list of 51+ things to do in Berlin, Germany. How many have you done?
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Posted on Tuesday, June 18, 2019 in Destinations
Tags: berlin, europe, germany