Berlin is a city that gets passed up all too often when people travel to Europe. It’s hardly owed to a lack of things to do in Berlin, because the German capital is a cultural and historical treasure trove, no doubt about it. Jet-setters traveling to Europe from, say, America or Asia often get hung up on the major tourist destinations like London, Paris and Rome, which, is of course understandable when one is travelling to Europe for the first time. Much like getting into anything unknown and foreign, it always makes sense to start with something generally appealing at first, then progressively delve deeper and deeper into the extraordinary and exotic.
For those traveling to Germany specifically, most are looking to experience very typical German things; at least, what foreigners believe to be very typical German things…Oktoberfest, Lederhosen, Wiener Schnitzel…well, newsflash for you, folks, most of the clichés that non-germans associate with Germany are only typical in a very specific part of Germany – Bavaria to be precise. And Wiener Schnitzel is actually Austrian, so get your facts straight! If these clichés are your goal, however, than it’s no wonder why Berlin gets pushed to the back burner. Berlin is quite honestly the least German city of any in the country, which is quite fascinating given the fact that it’s the nation’s capital. The reason for this is pretty complicated, but as you explore some of the amazing things to do in Berlin, you’ll begin to understand what makes the city as fascinating a city as any other in Europe.
Things to do in Berlin
Once on the ground in Berlin, you’ll quickly realize how many enjoyable things are vying for your time. With an overflowing amount of museums, galleries, sightseeing, attractions and nightlife, you’ll find that Berlin really does have something for everyone. Here’s a quick overview of the best things to do in Berlin.
Sightseeing in Berlin
From remnants of the old Prussian empire to traces of communism and a city divided, there are many sights in Berlin worth seeing. Be sure to take in the reality of Berlin’s troubled past by stopping off at the Berlin Wall. The massive concrete wall once snaked its way through the city, dividing it into two. It was mostly demolished after the fall of the Soviet Union, but a few sections left standing can still be seen today. Another worthy stop is Brandenburg Gate, or as the Germans would say, Brandenburger Tor. The landmark is one of the most iconic and recognizable in the country and attracts flocks of onlookers every single day of the year. As cliché as it is to get a photo at the historic Checkpoint Charlie, no trip to Berlin would be complete without seeing this place of struggle and conflict.
Visit Berlin’s incredible museums
Berlin is home to plenty of world-class museums covering a wide range of subjects. Five of these can be found on the famous Museum Island, a literal island in the middle of the Spree and a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. A few to look into are the Neues Museum, your one opportunity to see a mummy in Berlin, and the Pergamonmuseum, an exquisite, globally-recognized museum devoted to the wonders of archeology. Various stages of Berlin’s history can be explored in museums like the Deutsches Museum, Topography of Terror and DDR Museum, and of course beautiful works of art are always on display at the Gamäldegalerie.
Enjoy world-class cuisine
Berlin’s multicultural population makes for some incredible international cuisine. In addition to delicious traditional German food, many other European gastronomic traditions are well-represented in Berlin. Excellent Italian, Polish, Russian and Spanish restaurants are all poised to treat your palette to the wonders of the European continent while offerings from Berlin’s Turkish population make for dining experiences wild and exciting. Asian food is among the best being served in the city with representations from China, Vietnam, Japan and elsewhere, all super delicious and integral parts of Berlin’s vibrant and multicultural culinary landscape.
Experience the nightlife
When looking for things to do in Berlin, one realizes that the city’s nightlife is second to none. The club culture in Berlin attracts partiers from all over as the city’s most renowned clubs are always hosting the world’s most premier DJ’s. If dancing isn’t your thing, no problem. Berlin has quite the selection of bars and pubs as well. Commitment to excellence means that one can easily find great craft beer and outstanding cocktails. Berlin is home to a burgeoning scene of microbreweries who are brewing some of the best beers in Europe and some of inclusions on the World’s 50 Best Bars list hail from none other than right here in the German capital.
What to do in Berlin
Berlin is a large city and that means that visitors have way too many options to choose from. When it comes to deciding what to do in Berlin, you want to make sure your getting the best bang while you’re in town. It’s incredibly valuable to ask for insider tips from those who already know the ins and outs of the city. Whatever you’re looking to do, whether it’s visiting a great coffee shop, finding an amazing place for brunch, hanging out in a nice light-filled cafe, scoping out the best bars in each neighbourhood or simply taking in the fascination tourist attractions, Residency has curated guides for anything and everything you might be looking for during your stay in Berlin. Let us show you what to do in Berlin.
Discovering the best things to do in Berlin inevitably leads visitors to Berlin attractions. The main tourist attractions in Berlin are all fascinating in their own right, but some are more tourist traps than anything else. To help you navigate which ones deserve your time (and which don’t), we’ve done the leg work for you by compiling a guide to the best Berlin attractions.
Things to do in Berlin
Join the flocks of international visitors who come to take selfies at the most iconic landmark in Germany.
This tall tower in the very center of the city offers an incredible panoramic view from over three-hundred meters up in the air.
The home of the German parliament and site of historical demonstrations and bloody battles, the Reichstag Building is a worthwhile stop.
It’s hard to fully envision what it would have been like to live in a city where half the residents were essentially being held captive. The Berlin Wall is a must-see while in Berlin.
Immortalized in photographs, Checkpoint Charlie was one of a few major points of passage between east and west Berlin.
Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
The outdoor memorial and the accompanying exhibit down below commemorate the Jewish victims of the Nazi Holocaust – a truly sobering experience.
Due to the carnage and destruction suffered by most of Berlin in the second world war, few buildings offer a glimpse into the architecture of Prussian Berlin like the Berliner Dom.
A massive memorial dedicated to the Soviet soldiers who died during the Battle of Berlin, Treptower Park still rings with Soviet propaganda.
East Side Gallery
One of the few remaining stretches of the Berlin Wall, the East Side Gallery now serves as the world’s largest open-air gallery.
The famous location of the Berlin Airlift, Tempelhofer Feld was once an active airport. It now serves as a massive recreational space where Berliners enjoy time outdoors.
Best things to do in Berlin
Regardless of how you wound up in the German capital, these are definitely some of the best things to do in Berlin. As you explore all of Berlin’s incredible offerings, rest assured that you’re not simply following the crowd or getting sucked into any tourist traps. Enjoy Residency’s guide to the best things to do in Berlin.
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