Willkommen in Berlin!
An unparalleled combo of glamour and grit, a raw reflection of a vibrant culture, history and culture that pulsate through world-class galleries and historical attractions…Berlin is a city that never sleeps. A big multicultural city that beats with life and energy at every minute of the day – mecca of all artists, creative minds, bohemians and trendsetting individuals. It’s cool, it’s hip, but it’s also teeming with an exuberant collection of historical and cultural attractions. Berlin is, without a doubt, one of Europe’s most exciting destinations. It’s diverse, fun and a roller-coaster of emotions.
Today – Now
PLANNING & BOOKING
The dreaded part of any vacation - planning! Every savvy traveler knows that it’s always better to plan and book early in advance to bag those irresistible bargains. Not only do you get to save up to 25% on flight and hotel prices, but you also get to never settle for second-best! Lower flight prices, room deals and early bird discounts are only some of the many benefits of booking your tickets, excursions and accommodation early on. We recommend planning and booking 3 to 6 months in advance – a surefire way to have a worry-free pre-holiday buzz when the time to travel is near!
Unforgettable Moments - Berlin Highlights
From the funky neighborhoods of the East, to the quirky bars of the West, to the old City and the harrowing memorials…Berlin has it all. Enjoy the buzzing, lively energy of Berlin its street, pursue some of the world’s best museums, pedal along gorgeous rivers, walk through leafy gardens, and of course – try the renowned Currywurst. One week may seem like not enough time to truly experience Berlin, and while this may be right – Berlin takes years to explore – you’ll be able to get a gist of the city’s essence. From incredible museums to bustling restaurants and a direct window to Berlin’s rich history…You’re in for a great trip!
Day 1: Arrival
There are two main airports in Berlin – Tegel and Schoenefeld, and usually both are a comparable choice and have great connections to the city center.
Getting from Tegel to the city center:
You can take a taxi that will cost you about EUR32 and will last for about 14 minutes.
You can take the TXL Express – a bus that will take about 20 minutes and costs EUR2.8.
Getting from Schoenefeld to the city center:
Take the S-Bahn – a city train that reaches Berlin in 45 minutes and costs about EUR3.3
A taxi will take about 30 minutes and will cost approximately EUR60.
The N7 night bus – a 50 minute ride that costs EUR3.3
Once you’ve arrived at your hotel and settled, it’s time to start exploring! We recommend getting an early flight to Berlin so you can have the full day to explore. We also recommend purchasing the Berlin Welcome Card which gives you access to free public transportation, discounted entry to over 200 monuments and a free city guide. You’ll also be using it for free transportation for your day-trip to Potsdam!
Start your Berlin trip the right way – by experiencing the entire city from above. We’re talking 360-degree panoramic views of the city. You’ll find those views at Reichstag Dome – the building of the German Parliament. The dome itself is one of the main attractions in Berlin due to the fact that it effortlessly blends ancient architecture with a modern glass dome. You have to make a reservation on the website, and we recommend having an audio guide while on the terrace
By then you’ll probably be hungry, so get ready for a great meal at Käfer Roofgarden. From there, you can cross off one more important attraction in Berlin – the Brandenburg Gate – the only surviving historic city gate. It’s a must-see attraction and is the main symbol of Berlin, and was always the place that experienced some of the most influential moments of German history. After you’re done checking off some of the top Berlin attractions, head over to the Filmmuseum Berlin. Whether or not you’re into cinema, this experience will leave you quite intrigued.
By then you’ll probably be rife with jetlag, and there’s one way to fix that – steaks and wine! Head over to Grill Royal for the best steaks in Berlin with great views of the Bode Museum. We recommend having an early night for your first day since the next day will be quite hectic.
Day Two: Museums
Just a heads-up here…A visit to Berlin without trying its infamous currywurst is definitely not complete. Start your day by having a freshly brewed coffee and freshly made currywurst at Curry 61. Next, head over to the Berliner Dom, an incredible cathedral that was restored to its original design and stands majestically now. You can climb all the way to the top to enjoy beautiful views.
The rest of your day will probably be spent at Museum Island, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that houses five incredible museums offering a diverse range of artifacts ranging all the way from ancient history to now.
We recommend visiting them all, and we recommend buying the ticket that includes an entrance to all of them. This is the epicenter of the quickly developing arts scene in Berlin and a place you’ll definitely spend the entire day at.
Check out the Pergamonmuseum, which houses a great temple of Ancient Greece, visit the Neues Museum which has the bust of Queen Nefertiti and other Egyptian treasures, visit the Bode Museum, with a collection that beautifully represents the Byzantine Empire, and check out the Altes Museum and the Alte Nationalgalerie as well.
We recommend visiting Pariser Straße, a lively street that harbors dozens of bars and taverns so you can wind down with a drink or two.
Start your third day in Berlin by exploring one of its trendiest and coolest neighborhoods, Kreuzberg. It’s a place that’s full of great cheap eats, and boutique shops that you can explore.
We recommend having breakfast at the best brunch spot in Kreuzberg: Restaurunt Bastard. It’s a local favorite that serves all types of egg dishes, pancakes, fresh fruits and quality coffee as well.
From there, head to the East Side Gallery. This open-air gallery was once a part of the Berlin Wall and today serves as a huge space used for art. Think of it is as the longest painting gallery in the world – a staggering 1.3 kilometers of just art that completely juxtaposes the oppressive nature of the wall.
We recommend cycling around the East Side Gallery, all the way to the Oberbaum Bridge.
Keep cycling/walking until you reach Unter den Linden – a tree-lined street that is filled with all types of shops and restaurants. You cannot be in Unter den Linden without going to Einstein Unter den Linden, one of the best lunch places in the area serving absolutely delicious food in a cozy atmosphere.
Afterwards, head to Gendarmenmarkt, one of Berlin’s most picturesque squares where you can take photos with the historical buildings creating a wonderful backdrop. Next, you’ll be visiting Checkpoint Charlie – one of the most famous spots in Berlin now and during the Cold War.
There you’ll find a lot of panels explaining how this was used as the gateway that allowed the Westerners to travel from the West to the East of Germany, along with maps, photos and an authentic part of the Berlin Wall.
We recommend having dinner at one of the most loved restaurants amongst locals, Monsieur Vuong – a Vietnamese restaurant that buzzes with life, with people, and serves up the freshest Vietnamese food around. Delicious food and some fresh alcoholic smoothies are a great recipe to end your day with!
Day 4: Day-trip to Potsdam!
Morning – the journey:
The contrast between Potsdam and Berlin is unreal – from grit and history to Baroque buildings surrounded by scenic landscapes. There are over 17 palaces that give the city a fairytale vibe unlike anything in Berlin. From Berlin Central Station, we recommend taking the S-Bahn S7 train that will take you directly to Potsdam Hauptbahnhof and will take about 40/50 minutes. When you get there, rent a bike for the whole day as the attractions are a bit far away from each other and you’ll want to fit it all in one day!
Start by checking out the Filmmusemu Potsdam – a film museum that is considered the oldest in Germany. It beautifully displays a history of over 100 years of film and also hosts some special and temporary exhibitions.
Head over to the Bradenburg Gate (not to be confused with the one in Berlin) and then go directly to the Sanssouci – the main attraction in Potsdam. Here you’ll find a beautiful rococo-style palace that is perched in the middle of over 300 hectares of gardens. Next, cycle to the Dutch Quarter where you’ll be transported to 18th century Netherlands and enjoy the dozens of boutique shops and stores.
After you’re done with the Dutch Quarter, go to the Babelsberg Park, a huge park that can easily be mistaken for a painting. You’ll find the Babelsberg Palace and the Steam Engine Building there.
By the time you’re back in Berlin, you’ll be impatiently waiting for the moment you get to bed. But before you do, you have to try Berlin’s number-one fast-food snack – the doner kebab. And what better place to try it at than the top-quality Mustafa’s Gemüse Kebap?
Start your day by having breakfast at Distrikt – try their specialty coffee, and their banana and avocado toast.
Next, head over to the Holocaust Memorial, a place of incredible historical significance and a place you go to for contemplation and remembrance.
Walk around the grey pillars, and explore the world’s most well-known memorial. The place is simple yet chilling, and one that will evoke a lot of emotions in you, so be ready.
The next place not to be missed is the Potsdamer Platz – a famous square that was famously evicted during the Berlin War and was completely destroyed. Interestingly enough, now it’s the main center of modern Berlin.
There you can see the Sony Center, a cluster of modern buildings that pierce the sky.
After you’re done exploring around and having lunch, head over to the Topography of Terror, a museum that’s located where the Nazi secret police used to stay. Here you’ll be able to get a really good gist of the Nazi periods – all with pictures and details added.
You can’t miss out on seeing a performance at the renowned concert hall of Berlin Philharmonic. The décor is enough to have you falling in love!
Achingly hip and overflowing with people, Silo Coffee is one of the best brunch spots in Berlin. This local staple serves everything from baked eggs to mashed avocado to great coffee…Expect nothing less than a wonderful breakfast.
After breakfast, we recommend going for a leisurely stroll down Tiergarten, the most famous park in the city. There’s no better way to start your morning than by having a row-boat ride in the park’s large lake.
Next, head over to the Victory Column (made famous by the movie Wings of Desire) and then head to the German Museum of Technology. This museum is also perfect if you had kids with you, as it houses numerous interactive attractions that revolve around modern technologies. Enjoy a quiet meal at the Probier Mahl, a charming restaurant serving all types of food from tapas to burgers.
Visit Quaismodo, one of the oldest jazz bars in Berlin, and enjoy incredible jam sessions. This spacious venue offers everything from jazz to folk to blues and rock.
Day 7: Auf Wiedersehen, Berlin!
We recommend taking the evening flight out of Berlin so you can give yourself enough time to explore a bit more. If you do have time, we recommend going to Neukölln, one of the best multicultural neighborhoods in Berlin. There you’ll find the airport-turned-to-park – the Tempelhof Feld – and countless restaurants.