The chilling history and the beautiful architecture are two main reasons why you should visit Berlin. If these two things don’t excite you, you can still visit Berlin for shopping and tasting their cuisines.
Berlin, being so big, is full of innumerable tourist attractions and to ease your way, I’ve chosen the top-6 tourist attractions in Berlin. In this article, I will answer all questions that first-timers usually have. I will tell you how to reach Berlin and where to stay there so that you can make the most out of your trip. Let’s start!
If you are going to visit Berlin for the first time, you must know how to reach the city without hassle. Earlier, there were two airports in Berlin- The Tegel International Airport and The Schönefeld airport, which closed permanently.
Read more: The Best 2 Days Rome Itinerary
Now there is only one main airport, Berlin Brandenburg(BER) Airport, which started its journey at the end of 2020. It is located 18 km southeast of the city centre. Due to Covid-19, only the largest terminal of the new airport, Terminal 1 is currently in operation. Terminal 1 is connected to the rail and road network, making it easier for travellers to reach the city centre without much problem.
If you don’t stay at a nice place during your visit, checking out the tourist attractions in Berlin won’t be much fun. If you want to make the best out of your time, you should stay somewhere near the tourist attractions in Berlin that you have decided to visit. Berlin is nine times larger than Paris, so I’ve divided it based on neighbourhoods where you can stay.
If you have already read a few articles on Berlin, you might have read that Mitte is the most expensive area to stay. But I’ll say that you can always find a room at a reasonable price in Mitte. So, I’d suggest staying in Mitte because most of the tourist attractions in Berlin are located here. The Brandenburg Gate, Museum Island, the Reichstag, Gendarmenmarkt etc. Mitte is the best option for first-time visitors.
Luxury Hotels In Mitte:
- Hotel Berlin Check price and availability here
- NH Collection Berlin Mitte Friedrichstrasse Check price and availability here
- Maritim proArte Hotel Berlin Check price and availability here
Mid-Range Hotels In Mitte:
- Motel One Berlin-Bellevue Check price and availability here
- Hotel Lützow Check price and availability here
- Hotel Gat Point Charlie Check price and availability here
Budget Hotels In Mitte:
- Generator Berlin Mitte Check price and availability here
- a&o Berlin Mitte Check price and availability here
- Amstel House Hostel Check price and availability here
If you want to dive deeper into the culture of Berlin, staying at Kreuzberg will be a thrilling experience. A few tourist attractions are also available here- Checkpoint Charlie, Jewish Museum Berlin, German Museum of Technology, Topography of Terror, Berlin Wall etc.
Luxury Hotels In Kreuzberg:
- Novotel Suites Berlin City Potsdamer Platz Check price and availability here
- Crowne Plaza Berlin Check price and availability here
- Aletto Hotel Potsdamer Platz Check price and availability here
Mid-Range Hotels In Kreuzberg:
- Hotel Columbia Check price and availability here
- Select Hotel Berlin Checkpoint Charlie Check price and availability here
Budget Hotels In Kreuzberg:
- Check-In Hostel Berlin Check price and availability here
- 36 Rooms Hostel Berlin Kreuzberg Check price and availability here
There are three other nighbourhoods in Berlin- Friedrichshain, Charlottenburg and Prenzlauer Berg. These neighbourhoods are famous for culture, nightlife, shopping and cuisine. So, I wouldn’t suggest staying in these neighbourhoods to first-time tourists. But if you are going to Berlin for an extended vacation, you can check out all the neighbourhoods.
1. Museum Island
My topmost preference of the seven tourist attractions in Berlin is Museum Island. This part of the city consists of all the famous and best museums. The area is located in the northern part of Spree Island in the historic heart of Berlin. There are five museums on Museum Island- the Altes Museum, the Neues Museum, the Alte Nationalgalerie, the Bode-Museum, and the Pergamonmuseum. The best thing about visiting Museum Island is that you can check out these five famous museums altogether.
Altes Museum: The Altes Museum(Old Museum) was built during 1825-1830. The museum contains Classical Antiquities, which will give you an idea of ancient Greece.
Neues Museum: The Neues Museum(New Museum) was built around 1843-1855. It was destroyed during WWII and was rebuilt and opened again in 2009. The museum also contains the Collection of Classical Antiquities, including extensive collections from the Egyptian Museum and the Papyrus Collection.
Alte Nationalgalerie: The Alte Nationalgalerie(Old National Gallery), built-in 1876, is home to one of the largest collections of 19th-century sculptures and paintings in Germany. The museum also contains works of the Neoclassical, Romantic movements, impressionism, and modernism by some famous artists.
Bode Museum: The Bode Museum was built from 1898-1904. It contains a collection of sculptures, Byzantine art, and coins and medals.
Pergamon Museum: The Pergamon Museum contains a collection of sculptures from the archaic to Hellenistic ages, artwork from Greek and Roman antiquity: architecture, sculptures, inscriptions, mosaics, bronzes, jewellery, and pottery. The museum is also a home of Islamic Art, the Ishtar Gate, and reconstructed historic buildings from the Middle East.
Other than these museums, a new one, the Humboldt Forum, started here in 2019, featuring the Ethnological Museum of Berlin and the Museum of Asian Art.
2. The Brandenburg Gate
Right after the Museum Island, I would choose the Brandenburg Gate, which was once a symbol of Berlin and German division during the Cold War, but now it is a national symbol of peace and unity. Inspired by the Propylaea in Athens’ Acropolis, Carl Gotthard Langhans designed the Brandenburg Gate between 1788 and 1791, commissioned by King Frederick Wilhelm II.
The Brandenburg Gate is 65.5 metres long, 26 metres high, and 11 metres deep. Two rows of six Doric columns support it. It faces Pariser Platz, regarded as one of the city’s most attractive squares. If you want to know more about the history centring the Brandenburg Gate, you can walk by the tourist information centre. If you take a look at the gate for once, you will be compelled to take a few photos in front of the Brandenburg Gate, that I can bet!
3. The Rebuilt Reichstag
The Reichstag building construction started after Germany’s unification in 1871. The construction work was completed in 1894. The Reichstag building caught fire in 1933 under unknown circumstances. Later on, in 1998, it was reconstructed. That’s why it is known as the Rebuilt Reichstag.
The large glass dome at the top of the building highlights this reconstruction. The dome offers a 360-degree view of the surrounding Berlin cityscape. You can visit the dome with advance registration.
4. The Berlin Wall Memorial
The Berlin Wall was built as a guarded concrete barrier to physically and ideologically divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989. The Berlin Wall was around 155 kilometres long, and it bordered around West Berlin within 3.4m and 4.2m in height.
The Berlin Wall was reinforced by mesh fencing, anti-vehicle trenches, barbed wire, around 116 watchtowers, and 20 bunkers with hundreds of guards. The gates were opened in 1989, which was the first step toward German reunification.
Now, the graffiti-covered 1.4 metres of the Wall has become a famous tourist attraction in Berlin due to its historical significance. If you trace the path of the Wall, you will come across commemorative plaques and places documenting the actions of the people who died whilst trying to escape from East to West of Germany – and the many more who succeeded in fleeing. To get the most out of your tour to the Berlin Wall, you can join a guided tour available in English.
5. Berlin’s Television Tower
The 368-metres tall Berlin Television Tower is the highest building in Europe and a must-see for every tourist. The tower was inaugurated on 3 October 1969 and is the location of several radio and television broadcasting stations.
The viewing platform at 200-metres of the tower offers a mesmerizing view of the city. The revolving Sphere Restaurant located at the viewing platform provides international cuisine, which you can enjoy alongside the beautiful view of the entire city.
6. German Historical Museum
If you want to learn more about the city’s remarkable history, the German Historical Museum is a must-see for you. The museum displays artefacts of different periods and events from the country’s founding right up to the fall of the Berlin Wall.
You can join a guided tour to check out the entire museum as there are so many things to see. A cinema and a research library are located on-site for visitors.
So, are you excited to visit Berlin and get a taste of the chilling history of the place? No matter how many days you’ll be staying in Berlin, make sure to check these top-6 tourist attractions in Berlin. If you don’t pay a visit to them, your trip will remain incomplete, and I’ll be heartbroken. And after your visit, don’t forget to leave a comment below and let me know how you feel. I hope you have a great trip to Berlin!