Berlin – Sights

Berlin has lots to offer to visitors.
Some must-have-seen sights will be recommended in the following.

The BVG (public transport in Berlin) buses 100 and 200 are also known as the “sightseeing buses”. Both stop at Zoologischer Garten and take you through Berlin. You can get off wherever you like and resume your journey with one of the next buses. Tours are not guided, i.e. the bus driver will not explain the sights to you.
 
One, admittedly rather ambitious but great walking tour through Berlin could start at the Alexanderplatz with it’s TV Tower from where you walk to the Rotes Rathaus (Red Town Hall) and to the Marienkirche (Mary's Church). You could then walk down Karl-Liebknecht-Straße (Karkl-Liebknecht street) and stop by at the Museum Island (see below). Apart from the five museums, take a look at the Berliner Dom (Berlin Cathedral Church). The walk down Unter den Linden will take you past the Deutsches Historisches Museum (German Historical Museum), the Staatsoper Berlin (State Opera House), the Humboldt University across the Pariser Platz and finally to the Brandenburger Tor (Brandenburg Gate). Walking straight along Straße des 17. Juni would take you through the idyllic Tiergarten and to the Siegessäule (Berlin Victory Column). Turning left down Ebertstraße will take you to the Holocaust Memorial and eventually to the Potsdamer Platz. Memorable sights will be awaiting you there, as for instance the Neue Nationalgalerie (New National Gallery), the Philharmonie and the Sony Center.
Walking down Stresemannstraße (Stresemann street) and turning into Niederkirchnerstraße (Niederkirchner street) will take you past the Abgeordnetenhaus von Berlin (State Parliament of Berlin), the Martin-
Gropius-Bau
and the Topography of Terror to Friedrichstraße. To your right you will see Checkpoint Charlie, one of the most famous border crossings between East and West Berlin. The Mauermuseum is located right next to it. Turning left and walking up Friedrichstraße, then turning right into Mohrenstraße will take you to the Gendarmenmarkt with the Deutscher Dom (cathedral), the Französischer Dom (French Cathedral) and the Konzerthaus (Concert Hall).


Zoos: Berlin hosts two zoos, one in the former East and one in the Western part of town. The latter one is located at Zoologischer Garten and houses a beautiful aquarium (Berlin zoo). The Tierpark in the East is located in Friedrichsfelde and covers 160 hectares which makes it Europe’s biggest landscape
zoo.

Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtnis-Kirche: almost completely destroyed in WWII. This church became an symbol for West Berlin after it was rebuilt and reopened in 1961.


Kaufhaus des Westens (KaDeWe): Opened in 1907 this massive department store has been a symbol for luxury goods and dreams. It is located on Tauentzienstraße (Tauentzien street) just off the the glitzy shopping boulevard of Kurfürstendamm.


Berlin has a history of occupied houeses and independent, self-administrated artistic projects. You can catch a glimpse of it at the Kunsthaus Tacheles, an alternative cultural centre which was set up in the ruins of a bombed-out department store, or the SO36. Both facilities might be closed in the nearer future, taking a piece
of Berlin history with them.

  • Check out the Berlin events guide Zitty for all types of cultural events such as theatre, cinema, concerts, reading etc. etc.
 
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin: Here you can find an overview of all the state-run museums 

 
Museums Insel (Museum Island): a visit of Berlin must include this island on the Spree which is on the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage list. It houses five state museums:
Almost completely destroyed during the WWII, the last of the five museums has been reopened for the public in October 2009.


Jewish Museum: We highly recommend this fantastic museum which does, indeed, surprise. Lindenstr.
9-14.

 
Stasi Museum: located in the former Ministry for State Security in Berlin-Lichtenberg, showing the daily routine of the State Security in GDR, Ruschestr. 103, house 1.

 
Ethnological Museum: located in beautiful Dahlem, Arnimstr. 27.



Berlin – public transport

Berlin is part of the Transportation Association Berlin-Brandenburg (VBB) which also comprises Frankfurt (Oder).

There are 3 tariff zones in Berlin:
  • Zone A: surrounded by the S-Bahn ring (metro ring) and covers the city centre
  • Zone B: outside the S-Bahn ring (metro ring), ends at the city limits of Berlin
  • Zone C: encompasses nearby surrounding areas (e.g., Schönefeld Airport, Potsdam, Oranienburg).

  • Please refer to the route network to find out in which zone a certain station is.

Tickets are available for the combined zones AB, BC and ABC. The BVG offers a vast variety of tickets:

  • Short Trip Tickets allow you to travel up to 3 S- or U-Bahn stops or 6 stops on trams and busses.
  • Price: Euro 1,30
  • Single Tickets are valid for 2 hours from the time they are validated. You may interrupt your journey as often as you wish and change transport trains, buses, trams etc. Return trips and round trips are not permitted.
  • Price: AB Euro 2,10; BC Euro 2,50; ABC Euro 2,80.
  • 4-Trip Tickets allow you to buy four Single Tickets of Zone AB for the reduced price of Euro 8.
  • Day Passes allow you to travel freely for the whole day until 3:00 the following morning.
  • Prices: AB Euro 6,10; BC Euro 6,30; ABC Euro 6,50, whole VBB network Euro 19.
  • 7-Day-Passes allow you to travel freely for a whole week. Prices: AB Euro 26,20; BC Euro 27; ABC Euro 32,30; whole VBB network Euro 62,90.
  • Small Group Tickets allow a group of up to five people to travel freely for one whole day.
  • Prices: AB Euro 15,90; BC Euro 15,40; ABC Euro 16,10.


You may buy tickets at a ticket counter, a ticket machine at S- and U-Bahn (metro and subway) stations and in most trams. Bus tickets can be purchased from the bus driver - unless you’ve already got a ticket, of course.

You may find it helpful to plan your tour in Berlin by checking out the BVG’s Journey Planner