fun & unusual things to do in Berlin

Berlin is a bustling international city filled with history, art and culture from iconic museums to casual Biergartens and world-famous underground clubs.

There’s no shortage of eye-opening historical monuments that document both World War II and the Cold War split between East Germany and West Germany. The now-bohemian and alternative capital has something for everybody.

Whether you’re in town for a day or a week, if you’re looking for ways to experience the best of what the eclectic capital has to offer, here are a host of fun, interactive and fascinating things to do in Berlin (some of which are still little-known among tourist circles).

So, what are you waiting for? Get started planning your trip now and you’ll have a döner in your hand before you know it!

1 – Gaze over the city at the TV Tower

TV Tower, Berlin

For the perfect introduction to the hip German capital, if you want a magnificent landscape view of the city, make a beeline for the iconic TV tower — known locally as Berliner Fernsehturm.

Standing tall at a whopping 368 meters (with the observation deck at about 200 meters), this German landmark wields the title of the tallest building in Germany. It allows you to scope out the city from the sky, spotting landmarks like Alexanderplatz and Museum Island from above.

For a romantic VIP experience, book a table and enjoy the 360 degrees panoramic views of the sparkling city below!

Read more about Berlin TV Tower tickets price.

2 – Go inside the dome of the Reichstag

German Parliament Building, Reigchstag, Berlin

The German Parliament Building, known to the locals simply as Reichstag, is the owner of Berlin’s postcard-favorite glass dome.

The original building was burned down in a fire in 1933, however, the rebuilt building is just as elegant, offering exciting and history-centric tours for both German and English-speaking guests.

Inside, you can climb to the top of the dome to view the city.

Hot tip: Tours are free, but they sell out fast, so book your tickets in advance!

Read more about Reichstag Dome tickets & tours.

3 – Learn about the history of the Berlin Wall

Berlin Wall

There is little remaining of the Berlin Wall, but its impact is still felt throughout the city and beyond.

As a popular activity for history buffs, a walking tour to check the Berlin Wall includes visiting former border patrol stations at Bornholmer Straße and Checkpoint Charlie. You will also learn all about where the first East German citizens crossed the border.

Throw in stops at the original watchtower and the death strip, and you get a few hours of fascinating stories.

4 – Take a pre-arranged tour of Berlin!

city tours in Berlin

Don’t want to waste any time on your trip? Can’t be bothered doing any of the planning? Then take a tour of the city led by locals, to learn about the best things Berlin has to offer!

Whether you opt to scour the city by foot, bike, boat or Segway, expect to explore some of Berlins’ most historic and iconic monuments, museums and architecture.

Every tour is different, so just plan accordingly to your needs and you’re guaranteed a great time!

5 – Zip inside Europe’s fastest lift — Panoramapunkt

Panoramapunkt, Berlin

Looking for a thrill? Try zooming up inside Panoramapunkt located in the Kollhoff Tower.

By the time you realize you’re moving, you’ll already be 100 meters up above the streets below, overlooking Berlin and the pint-sized pedestrians. All that in only 20 seconds — blink and you’ll miss it.

For a lifetime memory you won’t soon forget, visit the terrace before sunset for a picture-perfect view.

6 – Learn about the city’s dark past at the Berlin Dungeon

Berlin Dungeon, Berlin
Actress Franziska “Giesi” Traub acts as Harlequin in a show at the Berlin Dungeon, Berlin

People who enjoy more macabre thrills will love the Berlin Dungeon, which takes visitors on a guided tour of Berlin’s dark past.

Led by knowledgeable locals, visitors will have the chance to explore over 800 years of history in the walk-through attraction that features immersive performances, sets, costumes, special effects, and plenty of impressive illusions.

With stories spanning the Black Plague to World War II and the fall of the Berlin Wall, this is one history lesson you don’t want to miss.

7 – Walk around Central Berlin with a Brandenburg Gate tour

Brandenburg Gate, Berlin

For a mix of sightseeing and mild cardio, try a walking tour of central Berlin, an easy way to check off some of the hipster city’s main haunts!

As you stroll around the popular areas, you’ll walk past all the major sights, like Brandenburg Gate and Museum Island, and hear rich stories about Berlin’s topsy-turvy history.

If walking isn’t your speed, you can always zip through the city at your own pace on a scooter tour!

8 – Shop ’til you drop at Alexanderplatz

Alexanderplatz, Berlin

Named after Tsar Alexander I, who visited the Prussian capital in 1805, Alexanderplatz has evolved over the centuries into the largest public square in Germany and a haven for shopaholics

With plenty of shops, restaurants and cafés, you can always find something to do! While cliche, you’ve got to take your photo in front of the iconic TV Tower to truly complete your trip.

Keep in mind that most locals just call it Alex.

9 – Spend some time in Kreuzberg

Kreuzberg, Berlin

Eastern Berlin holds a diverse, eccentric, multicultural neighborhood waiting to be explored. Kreuzberg is a well-known community of immigrants, minorities and progressive-minded people.

The neighborhood is filled with hole-in-the-wall cafés, art galleries, second-hand stores and snazzy bars and nightclubs.

A budget-friendly area too, Kreuzberg is the perfect place to eat, drink and dance the night away without breaking the bank.

10 – Remember those who were lost at the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp

Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, Berlin

While confronting, it’s important that we don’t forget about the tragic events of Europe in WWII.

On eye-opening tours to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, visitors travel by train to the site and will learn about some 200,000 people imprisoned within its fences between 1936 and 1945.

During the experience, you’ll be introduced to the barracks, cells, infirmary and laboratory while learning about the brave prisoners’ stories and their harrowing fates.

An important stop, the memorial honors those who needlessly lost their lives.

11 – Get to know the Alternative Berlin

Alternative Berlin tours

On the surface, Berlin is all about history — dive a little deeper and you’ll uncover that the German capital is far more than what it seems.

Get to know Alternative Berlin on a walking tour of the city’s multicultural quarters, such as Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg and Neukölln. Visit trendy shopping areas and cafés, underground art galleries and urban farms.

Walking tours are inexpensive, with some even free (but you can also leave a tip).

Check out the best free walking tours in Berlin.

12 – Float over Berlin in the World Balloon

World Balloon, Berlin

So long as dizzying heights don’t give you jelly legs, for a unique view of the city at 150 meters, visit the Berlin World Balloon!

High above Berlin in a gondola secured to a steel cable, you can enjoy panoramic views of the sprawling city, learning a thing or two along the way.

Don’t have time to see everything on the ground? The World Balloon floats above Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie and the Sony Center.

13 – Travel back in time at the DDR Museum

DDR Museum, Berlin

One for the history buffs, don’t miss the chance to step back into authentic homes of East German DDR — Deutsche Demokratische Republik.

In these reconstructed DDR apartments, you will learn about what life was like under the communist regime.

These apartments are meant to be explored, almost acting as an interactive museum. Visitors can rummage through Karat-wall cupboards, watch the TV and even smell the spices on the spice rack.

14 – Listen to the symphony at Berliner Philharmonie

Berliner Philharmonie, Berlin

Since 1882, the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra has been one of the most revered orchestras in the world. It’s best known for its compelling and elegant sound within its magnificent home, the Berliner Philharmonie theater.

Guests from all over the world flock to hear classical German music, making it difficult to snag a ticket — so, if this is on your bucket list (especially for music aficionados), be sure to plan in advance.

15 – Feel like royalty for a day at Potsdam

Orangery Palace at Sanssouci Park, Potsdam

Once home to Prussian Kings and the German Kaiser, Potsdam is a city full to the brim of history.

Whether you join a guided tour (which includes pick up and drop off from Berlin) or explore solo, don’t miss the palaces. These include the Cecilienhof Palace, King Frederick William II’s Marble Palace, the Dutch quarter and the UNESCO-listed Sanssouci Palace and Gardens.

Potsdam is filled with exquisite architecture, so keep your camera out when you can.

16 – See more of Berlin’s iconic places by bus

bus tours in Berlin

Berlin has a lot to see, and if you don’t have a lot of time, a bus tour might just be your best option!

Bus tours travel by the most iconic Berlin attractions, such as Kurfürstendamm, KaDeWe, Lützowplatz and Checkpoint Charlie. Keep your eyes peeled and camera at the ready as you sit back, relax and cruise through the city’s best offerings.

17 – Take a day trip to Sanssouci Palace

Sanssouci Palace day trips from Berlin

For a popular change of scenery from the German capital, travelers regularly rave about the Sanssouci palace in Potsdam.

This grandiose and enormous palace is the old summer home of the former King of Prussia, Frederick the Great, and sits just 40 minutes from Berlin by car.

The magnificent architecture and interior are spellbinding, but don’t dismiss the serenity of the luscious gardens outside either.

18 – Get contemporary at Urban Nation

Urban Nation, Berlin

Urban Nation is a contemporary museum for exhibitions of street art, sculptures, murals and photography.

Art-loving guests can explore over 500 square meters of the museum, filled with eccentric and unique art — yes, it’s compact, but it’s still worth a visit!

The museum also incorporates its art into neighborhoods, with plenty of outdoor murals to see after your visit to the museum.

19 – Wander around the main buildings on Museum Island

Museum Island, Berlin
Alte National Galerie on the Museum Island, Berlin

A museum lover’s paradise, Museum Island is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in the middle of the Spree River.

The tourist-favorite zone is packed with plenty of historic and cultural museums to choose from. The Alte National Galerie features art from all over the globe, including Romantic and Impressionist-era art. If you’re a history buff, make a beeline for the historical artifacts at the Pergamon Museum.

20 – Marvel at the jewels at Charlottenburg Palace

Charlottenburg Palace, Berlin

Visiting the Charlottenburg Palace is one of the more underrated things to do in Berlin. It’s located just 25 minutes outside of the hustle and bustle of the city.

The palace is home to Prussian crown jewels and other royal treasures. Guests can walk through the giant ballroom and feel like they’ve just been invited to a royal ball!

If you’re on a budget, access to the gardens is free, so soak up the sun all you want.

21 – Admire the art at the East Side Gallery

East Side Gallery, Berlin

The East Side Gallery on the Berlin Wall is well-preserved and has over 100 paintings from artists around the world. Each painting has different colors, styles and messages that will keep you inspired for hours.

Hot tip: Be sure to check out the most famous painting on the wall by Russian painter Dmitri Vrubel.

22 – Solve riddles on a scavenger hunt

scavenger games in Berlin

Do you love mysteries and puzzles? Then an engaging, totally interactive scavenger hunt may be the perfect way for you to explore Berlin!

With numbered envelopes or via the convenience of an app, you’ll have to solve tasks and crack codes to make your way through Berlin.

In Amazing Race-style, once you solve a riddle, you’ll move on to the next location. The tour takes you through iconic locations, such as Alexanderplatz, Museum Island and Checkpoint Charlie.

23 – Take a moment to reflect at the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, Berlin

The Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church was built in 1891 and, like much of the city, was largely destroyed in air-raids in 1945 during WWII.

The church started rebuilding in May 1959 and completed the foyer and chapel in December 1963 — and to this day has been popular with history-savvy tourists.

The scored spire on the church serves as a reminder of both Berlin’s dark past and a beacon of hope for the future.

24 – Go under the sea at Aquadom & SEA LIFE

Aquadom & SEA LIFE, Berlin

You may not think of the ocean when pondering your Berlin adventure, but SEA LIFE is about to change that.

Offering visitors a chance to explore the big blue world, this family-friendly attraction houses over 35 basins and 5,000 creatures … so there’s plenty to sea.

Learn about creatures who live locally, in the Spree River, and far away across the globe. Let the kids enjoy the touch tanks!

25 – Learn about Germany’s past at the Deutsches Historisches Museum

Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin

Visiting Germany’s national history museum, the Deutsches Historisches Museum, is a quintessential activity for self-proclaimed history experts.

Located in the Mitte district, the intriguing museum aims to be a place of active communication and discussion of history. Since the exhibits in the museum are always changing, you’ll have something different to talk about every time you pop in.

26 – Set sail on a dinner cruise

dinner cruises in Berlin

If you’re looking for a more intimate way to explore Berlin by night, then why not take in the sights from aboard an evening dinner cruise?

The showstopping boat ride will transport you around the canals of historic Berlin, as your eyes feast on all this iconic city has to offer — including views of Alexanderplatz, the Reichstag Building.

After sailing by the Bundeskanzleramt, Berlin’s answer to the White House, you’ll have the chance to grab a glass of wine from the bar — before being whisked off to your table and served an exquisite three-course (or sometimes four-course!) dinner.

27 – Get artsy at the Dali Museum

Dali Museum, Berlin
Carsten Kollmeier, founder of the Dali Museum

A true surrealist, Salvador Dali infused his work with elements of the macabre and grotesque in order to convey a sense of beautiful disorder.

This museum is dedicated to showcasing this renowned artist’s life’s work, with more than 450 exhibits on display, including several small-scale sculptures and

While you’re welcome to stroll around at your own pace, you can also join a guided tour to go more in-depth into this must-see landmark of the Berlin art scene.

28 – Roll around town on a bike tour

bike tours in Berlin

For when those weary legs just don’t want to walk anymore, and you want to explore the city from a different perspective (away from the hoards of tourists), book yourself on one of Berlin’s popular bicycle tours.

These fun and easy-going bike trips, led by locals, will take you through some offbeat locations in the German capital — like Friedrichshain or Kreuzberg — before finishing up back at the starting point.

With themed experiences like the Cold War, “Vibes of Berlin,” street art, and “top secret” spots, there’s a two-wheeled adventure for everyone.

29 – Step back in time at the Pergamon Museum

Pergamon Museum, Berlin

Housed in the former Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation palace on Museum Island, the Pergamon Museum is an international landmark and undisputed visitor magnet — arguably the most popular of the city’s museums.

Found here are monumental exhibits diving into ancient Babylonian, Greek and Roman culture — the world-famous Pergamon Altar from the Roman Period and plenty more.

Hot tip: During those busier tourist months (summer), grabbing a skip-the-line ticket online is a great option.

30 – Admire the flowers at the Gärten der Welt

Gärten der Welt, Berlin

For an unforgettable Berlin day out in nature, head to the 100-hectare Gärten der Welt in the eastern district of Marzahn.

This locally adored attraction will take you on a journey through the diverse flora of eight different countries from near and far. Whether you’re craving some tulips or are more in the mood for bamboo trees, this is one outdoor spot not to be missed.

31 – Learn about Berlin’s Jewish Heritage on a guided walking tour

Old Jewish Cemetery, Berlin

If you’re interested in exploring Berlin’s rich Jewish history, then the Jewish Heritage Walk, which dives into the chapters from the 17th century to today, is an excellent opportunity to do so.

This tour takes up to four hours, taking visitors around and across key sites of interest from both pre and post-war times. These include the New Synagogue, Old Jewish Cemetery, the Rosenstrasse Memorial and the powerful “Block of Women” memorial that commemorates the 1943 women’s uprising.

The stories told are moving and the sites visited are eye-opening — a must for anyone interested in history.

32 – Hit terminal velocity with a skydive!

skydiving in Berlin

If you’re looking for a thrilling experience to take your travel diary up a notch, then book yourself into one of Berlin’s most exhilarating (and adrenaline-pumping) activities!

Jump from 13,000 feet over the beautiful forests, lakes and farmland of Brandenburg county, about 30 minutes outside of Berlin. Go solo or with friends and family — either way, skydiving is sure to make that list of “must do’s” before you go home.

33 – Snap a selfie with Brad Pitt at Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds, Berlin

Forget about Hollywood — Berlin offers celeb-obsessed visitors the chance to meet all their favorite A-listers at Madame Tussauds. It’s just down the road from the Brandenburg Gate.

Get up close with life-size replicas of international stars like Barack Obama, Justin Bieber, Leonardo DiCaprio, Marilyn Monroe and Queen Elizabeth II — just a sliver of the dozens of names on offer.

It’s a sweet way to attract some social media attention, that’s for sure.

34 – Soar over the city with a helicopter tour

helicopter tours in Berlin

If you’re looking for a unique way to see the capital — and are up for an adrenaline-fuelled adventure at the same time — then getting out into Berlin’s blue skies is just what the doctor ordered!

With an expert pilot manning the controls (who’ll be delighted to teach you about both the vehicle and the city), simply sit back. Enjoy the overhead views of the Victory Column, Brandenburg Gate, TV tower and so much more.

35 – Catch a football (soccer) match at Olympiastadion Berlin

Olympiastadion Berlin

The Olympiastadion Berlin is situated in the northern part of the city, originally constructed as a venue for the 1936 Olympics, and today it still hosts major sporting events including football matches (it’s home turf to Hertha BSC Berlin).

Besides being one of Germany’s most important venues for athletics, the stadium has a fascinating history — and it’s worth a visit for the eye-catching architecture alone.

36 – Scoot around town on a Segway tour

segway tours in Berlin

Zip by a handful of the city’s historic sites in a fun-for-all-ages battery-powered Segway!

Whether you’re new to two wheels or a seasoned expert, all levels are catered for with this unforgettable experience!

Guided tours cover a variety of areas from Mitte to Potsdamer Platz, passing by iconic spots like the Berlin Wall, Berlin Cathedral and Museum Island along the way.

If a tour isn’t your jam, standalone rentals are also available.

37 – Explore the Berlin Underworld

Berlin Underworld, Berlin

This is a perfect example of the “dark tourism” trend sweeping the globe. The Berlin Underworld is viewable through a collection of walking tours that take guests through some of the city’s most infamously dark and twisted locations.

Delve into Berlin’s turbulent past and explore its WWII-era history. Step inside former war bunkers, the abandoned Gesundbrunnen underground railway station and much more.

The tours are led by an expert guide, who’ll offer you a comprehensive account of Berlin’s history — and the lesser-known stories behind some of its famous sites.

38 – Try indoor skydiving!

indoor skydiving in Berlin

For all the blood-pumping thrills of a skydive without the need to actually jump out of a plane, Berlin’s indoor skydiving center is the perfect alternative.

With a specially designed wind tunnel, you’ll experience all the excitement of flight with none of the fear — simply put on your gear and step inside for an exhilarating time in complete safety!

The experience lasts just a couple of minutes, but promises to be one that’s truly memorable!

39 – Admire ancient art at the Altes Museum

Altes Museum, Berlin

Located on Museum Island, the Neoclassical Altes Museum building is one of Berlin’s most popular attractions for ancient art lovers.

The museum is home to a large and varied collection that includes everything from Egyptian artifacts to Greek, Etruscan. and Roman antiquities. It offers visitors an immersive glimpse into cultures long past, while also providing food for thought about how they’ve shaped our world today.

Hot tip: Grab a ticket online to skip the line during the busier months.

40 – Stuff your face on a food tour!

food tours in Berlin

Who’s hungry?

There’s no better way to get a taste (literally) of Berlin than by exploring its diverse culinary offerings on one of the city’s many food tours that stroll through Mitte and/or Kreuzberg.

Whether you’re in search of traditional German fare such as meatballs or sausages (not to mention cakes!) or looking to dive into the city’s diverse international foodie scene (don’t miss the doner kebabs!) — these tours will satisfy your appetite for adventure.

41 – Enjoy the art at the Alte Nationalgalerie

Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin
Auguste Renoir’s “Children’s Afternoon at Wargemont” (1884) at Alte Nationalgalerie in Berlin

One of the five main attractions on Museum Island, this grand art gallery is home to over 2,000 pieces of intricate paintings, sculptures and drawings.

Exhibits include masterpieces of French Impressionism, early Modernism (including works by Adolph von Menzel and Max Liebermann), and a truckload of pieces depicting the Neoclassical and Romantic movements.

42 – Visit the museum in the old train station: Hamburger Bahnhof

Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin

Dive into the country’s fascinating past at this contemporary art institution (the Museum für Gegenwart) that was once the main train station that connected Hamburg and Berlin!

This mid-19th century building is now an internationally renowned site. It houses an extensive permanent collection of modern paintings, sculptures and drawings, including well-known works by the likes of Andy Warhol and Marcel Duchamp.

43 – Meet your favorite animal at Berlin Zoo

Berlin Zoo, Berlin

The Berlin Zoo is an animal lover’s dream come true!

This sprawling 86-acre site houses more than 20,000 animals from nearly 1,400 species — including giant pandas, polar bears, gorillas, adorable penguins and the snowy owl (a Hedwig lookalike, for all you HP fans).

Visitors can explore the grounds at their own pace or take a guided tour to find out all about the zoo’s history (including its current conservation efforts). Get up close and personal with some of its friendly and furry inhabitants.

44 – Marvel at the works of the Bode Museum

Bode Museum, Berlin

Sitting on the northern tip of Museum Island (dishing up great views), the popular Bode Museum is home to two enormous collections, the Sculpture Collection and the Museum of Byzantine Art — complemented by smaller displays of coins and medals.

Like most of the city’s wonderful museums, skip-the-line tickets are available online and recommended.

45 – Enjoy a show at the Friedrichstadt-Palast theater

Friedrichstadt-Palast, Berlin

Experience Berlin’s history through a kaleidoscope of colors, shapes and light at this popular show space!

The theater in Mitte is famous for its stunningly opulent interior and the countless performances that have taken place on its stage over the years, including opera and dance presentations.

The theater’s program is as versatile as it gets, with over 100 local and international artists gracing its stage every year — check the calendar to see who’s performing during your trip.

46 – Admire over 200 artworks at the Berggruen Museum

Berggruen Museum, Berlin

This contemporary art museum houses an extensive collection of modern and post-war paintings, sculptures and drawings. It displays an array of thought-provoking pieces by infamous artists such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Georges Braque, Paul Klee and more!

Unlike most of the city’s museums, this one isn’t on Museum Island. Berggruen sits in the Charlottenburg district, a convenient short walk from the stunning Charlottenburg Palace.

47 – Check out the Natural History Museum (Museum für Naturkunde)

Natural History Museum, Berlin

This sprawling 19th-century building houses a plethora of well-curated exhibits for all ages — including fossils and preserved animals.

One of the essential things to do in Berlin for fans of zoology and evolution, the museum’s collections include everything — from ancient Egyptian artifacts to dinosaur skeletons that have been reconstructed into lifelike poses.

The undisputed highlight? The world’s largest dinosaur skeleton, a Brachiosaurus standing a colossal 13.27 meters tall!

48 – Learn about the history of our ancestors at the Neues Museum

Neues Museum, Berlin

In Berlin’s UNESCO World Heritage Museum Island district, the Neues Museum is home to an impressive and extensive collection of antiquities from ancient Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and Etruscan civilizations.

Inside this beautifully designed building on Schlossplatz, you’ll find 9,000 fascinating and unique objects, none more appreciated than the 700,000-year-old ax head that dates back to the earliest Stone Age.

49 – Grab a coffee (or beer) and people-watch at Gendarmenmarkt

Gendarmenmarkt, Berlin

Nestled in the Friedrichstadt District, this grand square is the site of many a Berlin Christmas market but is also home to some of the city’s most iconic buildings: the French and German Cathedrals and the Konzerthaus.

The famous square boasts no shortage of restaurants and cafes either, making it a wonderful spot to recharge the batteries and people watch.

50 – Learn about design at Kunstgewerbemuseum

Kunstgewerbemuseum, Berlin
Visitors to Kunstgewerbemuseum look at a piece of the Guelph Treasure during ‘Long night of the museums’ in Berlin

Known in English as the Museum of Decorative Arts, the high underrated Kunstgewerbemuseum is the perfect place to explore the world of European fashion and design, with exhibits spanning centuries of history until today.

As the oldest decorative arts house in the country, it’s a worthy visit for the artistically inclined.

After checking out the two floors of exhibits, spend an hour or two exploring the nearby Tiergarten park.

51 – Pay tribute at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Berlin

A powerful, postmodern symbol of one of humanity’s greatest tragedies, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe is best approached with compassion and an open mind.

Carved into a field in central Berlin near the Brandenburg Gate, visitors are invited to wander through a contemplative maze made up of 2711 concrete slabs of different heights.

Deliberately abstract and complex, the monument has no goal for its visitors, no end, and no clear entry or exit — it’s deliberately lacking understanding, portraying the massaging that understanding the horrors of the Holocaust is truly impossible.

52 – Step inside the Berlin Cathedral (Berliner Dom)

Berlin Cathedral, Berlin

An icon of Berlin’s cityscape, this grandiose cathedral has a history book full of interesting stories and anecdotes, including being severely damaged during WWII.

Be sure to check out the 7,000-pipe organ, and take some time to admire the cathedral’s impressive stained glass windows.

Hot tip: Despite the old stairs, it’s certainly worth climbing all the way up to the Dom for the excellent city views.

53 – Learn about the Cold War at Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin

A Berlin landmark and one of the most iconic symbols of the Cold War, the Haus am Checkpoint Charlie Museum recounts a different side to history.

Centered on Checkpoint Charlie — once part of the escape route between West and East Germany during the Cold War — a visit will give you an insight into life behind what was then known as ‘the Iron Curtain’, diving into one of the tightest and complex border security systems of the era.

54 – Have a picnic in Tiergarten Park

Tiergarten Park, Berlin

After ticking off all the museums and filling your brain with history lessons, a breath of fresh air is well-deserved, and Berlin’s Tiergarten is the perfect place to soak up some sunshine and explore Berlin’s love affair with parks!

Sprawling across more than 200 hectares, it features a large lake, pedal-taxi rentals, plenty of green space for picnics, the Berlin Zoo, and the Soviet War Memorial.

A range of guided tours walks through the park for anyone keen to learn a little more about the area.

55 – Learn about the country’s former secret police at the Stasi Museum

Stasi Museum, Berlin

This eye-opening museum is located just minutes from the Berlin Central Station and tells the story of what life was like in East Germany, diving into the stories of the Stasi, the frightening former East German secret police force.

The building, near the Magdalenenstraße train station, has been left largely untouched to show how it looked during its time as a Stasi headquarters – this includes artifacts and photos on the walls documenting their work over three decades.

56 – Spend the day in Treptower Park

Soviet War Memorial in the Treptower Park in Berlin, Germany
Tourists visiting the Soviet War Memorial in the Treptower Park in Berlin, Germany

Berlin’s Treptower Park is a vast, beautiful and well-maintained green space, covering more than 207 acres (84 hectares) of land.

For nature lovers, consider renting a pedal boat, rowboat or barbecue boat on Insel der Jugend; history buffs, don’t miss the enormous Soviet War Memorial in the park’s center.

Finally, for all of you astronomy nerds, check out the Archenhold Sternwarte Observatory, home of the world’s longest refracting telescope (perfect for nighttime stargazing).

57 – Get off the beaten track with a street art tour

Friedrichstrasse, Kreuzberg District
Mural on building in Friedrichstrasse, Kreuzberg District

A stark juxtaposition to its historic side, Berlin also boasts a wacky and wonderful side, and its street art is a perfect example of that.

In super hipster areas like Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain, you’ll find some of the most famous street murals in the country, depicting everything from pop culture icons to political statements.

Not to be missed is the iconic slice of Berlin Wall art that is the kiss between Leonid Brezhnev and Erich Honecker.

58 – Climb the steps of the Victory Column (Siegessaule)

Victory Column, Berlin

A Berlin landmark, this impressive monument is one of the few things that survived WWII intact. Located in Tiergarten park, it was built to commemorate Prussia’s victory over France and Napoleon III in 1871.

The column itself is an impressive 67 meters high, and visitors can climb the 285 steps to get a breathtaking view of Berlin from its 360-degree viewing platform.

59 – Walk through Tränenpalast, the ‘Palace of Tears’

Tränenpalast, Berlin

Offering an emotional peek into daily life during the Cold War era, Tränenpalast used to be a border crossing point between East and West Berlin. It is now a museum that documents the stories of those who once crossed.

The building is located at the Friedrichstraße train station and, while small, is a powerful reminder of the division and reunification of the city.

It’s free to visit, so why not add it to the list of things to do in Berlin?

60 – Play detective at the Spy Museum!

Spy Museum, Berlin

The Spy Museum is located near Potsdamer Platz and, as Germany’s only museum dedicated to espionage history, it offers visitors an interactive experience of the ever-intriguing world of spies.

Exhibits range from a lie detector simulation to a laser-beam obstacle course (exactly like in the movies) and interactive displays about the history of spying during the wartime (and beyond).

61 – See vintage cars at Classic Remise Berlin

Classic Remise Berlin

Heaven on earth of car lovers, this sprawling museum-meets-garage Classic Remise houses in a historic tram depot is a true gem — and free for everyone to visit.

Besides the dozens of impressive cars on display, the most noteworthy attraction is arguably the fascinating workshop area, where these vintage beauties are lovingly restored and maintained.

62 – Race against the clock in an escape room!

escape rooms in Berlin

With both escape rooms of different themes and city-wide scavenger hunts on offer, there’s plenty to choose from for any budding detective visiting Berlin.

EXIT Berlin in Mitte offers spooky escape room themes like a prison, an old sanatorium or an underground city. Smartroom Berlin features family-friendly rooms like Alice in Wonderland or adventures in space. Escape Game Notlandung Berlin in Langwitz showcases what a real-life emergency plane landing would be like.

63 – Take the kids to Legoland Discovery Center!

Legoland Discovery Center, Berlin

A stone’s throw from  Potsdamer Platz, Legoland Discovery Center offers plenty of fun for youngsters and LEGO-loving adults alike. The giant lego-built giraffe at the entrance is a regular hit, likewise the exhibition of miniature buildings.

Hot tip: For the most affordable tourist package, combine your LEGOLAND Discovery Centre ticket with a visit to SEA LIFE, Madame Tussauds to save up to 30% (cha-ching!).

64 – Browse the Rembrandt collection at the Gemäldegalerie

Gemaldegalerie, Berlin
“The Fountain of Youth” (1546) by Lucas Cranach the Elder at Gemaldegalerie, Berlin

Housing an exquisite array of paintings by Rembrandt, plus those of Johannes Vermeer, Antonio Viviani, and Raphael — to name but a few — the Gemäldegalerie is a must-see for any art lover visiting Berlin.

The museum is situated a couple of minutes from Tiergarten, and while it can’t compete with blockbuster collections like those in London or Paris, for many visitors this only adds to its charm.

Be sure to opt for the audio guide and don’t forget to visit the gift shop!

65 – Peer into prison cells at the Berlin-Hohenschönhausen Memorial

Berlin-Hohenschönhausen Memorial, Berlin

A former Stasi prison, this confronting memorial is a must-see for anyone interested in learning more about the country’s complicated history.

The exhibitions are fascinating, and offer an eye-opening insight into what life was like during this dark period of German history. Meanwhile, the prison cells, interrogation rooms and exercise yards are all explorable.

66 – Explor the hip district of Prenzlauer Berg

Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin

A thoroughly gentrified area that’s become a hotspot for families and youth, the Prenzlauer Berg district is a great place to explore.

From the Berlin Wall remnants to decorated streets lined with boutiques, cafes, and bars – not forgetting plenty of green spaces for recreation – this neighborhood has something for everyone.

Insider tip: On Sundays, the biggest summer flea market in the city is found here, at Mauerpark.

67 – Take a guided tour of Mitte: The beating heart of Berlin

Mitte District, Berlin

Mitte is the city’s cultural center, home to a number of unique museums and galleries, as well as more traditional attractions like the Brandenburg Gate and Tiergarten park.

With so much to see in the area — from busy boulevards like Unter den Linden to the Hackescher Markt square — a walking tour led by a friendly local is the best option to cram as much of the area in within a few hours.

For something a little different, consider a comedy tour, food-themed tour, or haunted ghost tour under the moonlight!

68 – Head underground at the Berlin Story Bunker

Berlin Story Bunker, Berlin
credit to Berlin Story Bunker

Initially built as a civilian air raid shelter during the peak of WWII, today the bunker has been transformed into a multimedia exhibition space, telling the story of Berlin.

Showcasing information-packed displays about the ride of Socialism, the Nazi party, and the lead-up and aftermath of the war, it’s a museum experience not to be missed.

69 – Stroll around the Botanical Garden and Botanical Museum

Botanical Garden and Botanical Museum, Berlin

Sitting in the heart of Berlin, this is one of Europe’s largest and most famous botanical gardens, spread over a whopping 106 acres (43 hectares) and constructed at the turn of the 20th century.

With shimmering lakes and calm ponds on site, as well as plenty of exotic plants and trees from all around the world — making up 22,000 different species in total — it’s no wonder that locals and tourists flock through its doors.

70 – Cruise down the River Spree

boat tours in Berlin

We already mentioned dinner cruises, however, Berlin’s River Spree also plays host to an array of private and public sightseeing tours as well as luxury catamaran adventures that often explore the nearby Müggelsee or Wannsee lakes!

Regardless of your boat tour of choice, expect a friendly, informative guide to dish out plenty of fascinating tidbits along the way.

71 – Learn about anatomy at Body Worlds

Body Worlds, Berlin

It’s like playing doctor … but in a museum!

This unique exhibition reveals the secrets of what’s happening inside your body. It’s the only place in Berlin where visitors can gain such a detailed understanding of what happens both when you’re alive … and when you’re not.

Showcasing anatomical models and actual human bodies — including brains, hearts, muscles and bones — alongside interactive displays and multimedia presentations about common diseases. It’s a learning experience unlike any other.

Warning: In case you missed it, there are real human bodies here, so don’t visit if you’re squeamish.

72 – Check out the Sony Store

Sony Store, Berlin

Found at Potsdamer Platz, the ultra-modern Sony Center is home to a Sony Store Berlin where you can browse the latest in digital technology. The PlayStation® Game Zone, in particular, is a hit for gadget-loving gamers.

Besides all the latest whiz-bang tech at the Sony Store itself, the Center also houses a cinema, restaurants, and plenty of shops.

73 – Shop till you drop on the Kurfürstendamm Street

Kurfürstendamm Street, Berlin

Germany’s answer to the Champs-Élysées or New York’s Fifth Avenue, Kurfürstendamm is known as one of the most famous streets in Berlin, home to some of the city’s finest fashion boutiques and international brands.

Stretching from Uhlandstraße all the way down to Breitscheidplatz — passing through Charlottenburg and Wilmersdorf on its way — it’s a shopping mecca for those not afraid of high-end labels.

74 – Pay respects at the Platform 17 Memorial

Platform 17 Memorial, Berlin

Located at the Grunewald station, this memorial serves to commemorate the Jews who were deported on trains to concentration camps during the Holocaust.

A subtle yet powerful memorial, the large floor tales are chronologically laid and displays the date, the number of Jews deported and the final destination.

75 – Watch street artists perform at Mauerpark

Mauerpark, Berlin

While a former part of the Berlin Wall, Mauerpark is now a vibrant always-happening focal point for markets, concerts, and casual lazy days on the grass.

Kids flock to the swings at the Rainbow Playground, couples love to throw down a picnic rug in the Birch Grove, and tourists are often drawn to the musicians and performers in the amphitheater.

If visiting in the summer, be sure to stop at the Sunday flea market!

76 – Find the hidden gems around Potsdamer Platz

Potsdamer Platz, Berlin

After being destroyed during the allied bombings, Potsdamer Platz has been rebuilt and revitalized. Now one of the busiest sections of Berlin, it’s home to several international flagship stores and an eclectic array of shops and restaurants.

You can see and do so much in the area with a pre-arranged tour, led by a charismatic local who’ll help you get off the beaten track and uncover all the hidden gems.

77 – Max out the credit card at the Mall of Berlin!

Mall of Berlin, Germany

Berlin’s most trafficked shopping center, the Mall of Berlin is home to over 300 stores — with a vibrant blend of international high-end brands alongside fast-fashion retailers like Mango and H&M.

After all that shopping works up an appetite, the Mall also boasts one of the largest food courts in Germany!

78 – Get lost in the KaDeWe department store

KaDeWe, Berlin

Officially named Kaufhaus des Westens, this department store in the heart of Berlin has been a city icon for over 100 years, with the claim to fame of being Europe’s largest department store behind Harrods in London.

The flagship KaDeWe is home to several floors with designer fashion, gourmet delights and cutting-edge electronics — and even if you’re not a big spender, it’s worth a visit for its sheer size alone.

79 – Explore the bustling Hackescher Markt

Hackescher Markt, Berlin

An historic square in the city center of Berlin made up of an intricate labyrinth of eight courtyards, Hackescher Markt is a must-visit for visitors looking to get their fill on some great food and drink.

Check out the street art in the Courtyard of Haus Schwarzenberg. Take a culinary journey through Viet Village and pick from the handful of restaurants, cafés and wine bars in the area.

80 – Visit the Topography of Terror museum

Topography of Terror, Berlin

Of all the WWII-related things to do in Berlin, a lot of visitors will suggest that this powerful, confronting museum is one of the most moving and fascinating.

Sitting indoors and outdoors on the former site of the Gestapo and SS headquarters, the museum offers a chilling account of the infamous WWII government regime and their excesses.

It takes visitors through individual moments in history, from Hitler’s rise to power to his eventual death, and includes artifacts, documents, photographs, and films that bring this period in Germany’s past to the forefront of mind for anyone who visits.

81 – Kayak down the Spree

kayaking in Berlin

A popular way to see Berlin from a new angle is kayaking in the city’s famous river. The Spree or down the parallel Landwehr Canal is an exhilarating experience for those looking for something slow-paced in the fresh air.

There are plenty of informative and enjoyable tours available where you can get out on the water. You can also simply rent your own kayak and paddle around at your own pace.

82 – Cycle on the runways at Tempelhofer Park

Tempelhofer Park, Berlin

On the site of the now-closed Berlin Tempelhof Airport (of which you can still walk or cycle along the runways), the 877-acre Tempelhofer Park is the largest-inner city open space not just citywide but worldwide.

This former airfield turned park might sound like an unusual day out, but it offers a myriad of exciting activities like easy mountain biking tracks, picnic spots, historic cemeteries, a calendar of music festivals, and bicycle hire stations — a great spot to simply chill out.

83 – Wander around Hackesche Höfe

Hackesche Höfe, Berlin

A network of eight courtyards in the Mitte district, Hackesche Höfe has become a cosmopolitan mixture of old and new, and east and west. It’s coming alive during the sunny days with local Berliners going about their daily business.

The historic buildings are home to a range of cafes and restaurants, as well as boutiques selling everything from jewelry to souvenirs. Plus there’s a cinema in one courtyard if you’re looking for a day of entertainment and a handful of nightclubs for you party animals too.

84 – Let your hair down on a pub crawl or beer tour!

beer bike in Berlin

The perfect way to start any trip to Berlin and meet a few friendly faces is with a beer tour — with both low-key tastings and wild club-hopping parties, making up either end of the spectrum.

Ranging from authentic German pubs and Biergartens that are hundreds of years old to newer craft breweries, no two tours will be alike — but they’ll all cover an impressive number of establishments throughout this lively metropolis.

Don’t feel like walking? Then hop on a beer bike!

How to see the city on a budget

Berlin is an incredible city filled with rich history, diverse neighborhoods, and creative art communities. With so much to do, it’s important to pick what matters to you when planning a trip.

To maximize your sightseeing experience, consider grabbing a Berlin WelcomeCard. The card, designed especially for tourists, gives unlimited access to public transport and grants entry to a host of museums, the Olympiastadion Berlin Visitor Center and SEA LIFE, plus bike rentals and plenty more!

Cards are available for 48 hours up to six days.

Looking for somewhere to stay?

There are plenty of world-class hotels to choose from in Berlin, like Adlon Kempinski, The Ritz-Carlton, and Regent Berlin. On the flip side, there’s no shortage of quirky and typical Berlinesque hostels and AirBNBs too.

No matter your budget or appetite for luxury, the best prices are almost always found on Booking.com, a meta-search engine that compares all of the internet’s hotel deals. Even if you don’t book through that site, it’s a wonderful way to explore the possibilities on offer and learn about the most popular suburbs and districts to stay in.

How to get to the city from the airport

Make no mistake, Berlin is MASSIVE – and has multiple airports to boot. When you’re arriving or leaving, take the hassle out of trying to decipher the public transport system or haggle with a taxi driver.

Instead, we recommend booking a pre-arranged airport transfer. Besides the convenience factors, seeing your name on a placard in the arrivals lounge is a pretty boss feeling.

Thanks for checking out our collection of exciting, historic, informative, and fun-filled things to do in Berlin, Germany!

If you can think of any activities, landmarks, or tours that aren’t on the list (although we’re pretty confident we’ve covered all the main ones), don’t hesitate to leave a comment below.

Happy travels!