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First Timer's Guide To Berlin, Germany

18 Apr 2018

Noelle Ong

Klook Travel Curator

First-timer guide to Berlin

The largest city and the capital Berlin is definitely not to be missed if you’re heading to Germany. The combination of rich history and the modern street art scene with graffiti remains makes the city the exciting place it is today. If it’s your first time in Berlin, read on to find out some of the must-visit sites and the best eats in the city.

Klook Pro-Tip: Travelling around Europe with the Eurail Pass is a much cheaper and hassle-free alternative to purchasing single trip tickets!

Berlin Highlights

1. Reichstag

The Reichstag which also serves as the parliament of the Federal Republic of Germany, is one of the city’s most significant historical buildings. Lucky for us, the roof terrace and the glass dome of the Reichstag building is open to public!

Register for your visit online before making your trip down and you’ll even be given an audio guide that tells you the stories of Berlin as you make your way up the dome.

Address: Platz der Republik 1, 11011 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 8am - 12am

Nearest Station: Bundestag Station

2. Berlin Wall East Side Gallery

One of the most iconic sights in Berlin is definitely the Berlin Wall. Probably the longest stretch of the remnants of the Berlin Wall, this open air gallery was monumental in defining the end of the Berlin Wall.

Consisting of 105 paintings by global artists, the paintings also depict a time of change, expressing the varying sentiments of euphoria and hope for the future. The painting, “My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love “ is probably one of the best known paintings on the wall. The painting depicts Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev giving the East Germany President Erich Honecker a kiss on the lips.

Address: Mühlenstraße 3-100, 10243 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 24-hours

Nearest Station: Ostbahnhof Station

3. Brandenburg Gate

The Brandenburg Gate is one of Berlin’s most significant monuments with over 200 years of history. This symbol of unity is topped off with Quadriga - the statue of the goddess of victory driving a chariot pulled by 4 horses to symbolize the end of the Under Den Linden and the unification of Germany.

Address: Pariser Platz, 10117 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 24-hours

Nearest Station: Brandenburger Tor

4. Checkpoint Charlie

The famed Allied post - Checkpoint Charlie was used as the main demarcation between the Allies and the Soviets and was the ONLY gateway that East Germany allowed Allies to pass into the Soviets.

Address: Friedrichstraße 43-45, 10117 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 24-hours

Nearest Station: U Kochstr./Checkpoint Charlie

5. Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe

The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe might seem like a place for your #ootds, but do remember that it is at the root of it, a place of contemplation and remembrance. These 2711 concrete slabs of different heights leave you cut off from the outside world as you walk through the rows and rows of them, leaving a feeling of uncertainty.

Address: Cora-Berliner-Straße 1, 10117 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 10am - 8pm

Nearest Station: Potsdamer Platz or Mohrenstraße

6. Berlin Cathedral - DOM

The Cathedral of Berlin one of the most iconic landmarks in the Berlin city skyline. While its impressive basilica dome might impress you already, the interior of this church is even more spectacular. You can even climb up 270 steps to the dome’s outer walkway and be rewarded with panoramic views of the city!

Address: Am Lustgarten, 10178 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 9am - 7pm

Nearest Station: Spandauer Str./Marienkirche

7. Fernsehturm

The Berlin TV Tower, also known as the Fernsehturm in Alexanderplatz is the city’s tallest landmark. Standing tall at 368 metres, it’ll offer you 360 degree panoramic views of the entire city! There’s also a revolving restaurant at the top which we’d suggest making reservations for if you plan to visit.

Address: Panoramastraße 1A, 10178 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 9am - 12am

Nearest Station: Alexanderplatz

Photo credit: visitberlin.de

8. Jewish Museum

The heart of Berlin’s history stems from the Holocaust and a visit to the Jewish Museum is almost a must in order to truly understand Berlin. Apart from the deconstructivist exterior, the permanent exhibits inside of the museum reflect the tensions of the German-Jewish history and these are marked by lines and voids inside the entire museum.

Address: Lindenstraße 9-14, 10969 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: 10am - 8pm

Nearest Station: Hallesches Tor or Kochstraße

Photo credit: inhabit.com

9. Kreuzberg Street Art

Fans of street art will love the the graffiti rich area of Kreuzberg. Stroll along the streets and uncover works by Banksy, Victor Ash and Jadore Tong. We’d suggest going on a free walking tour because if you just wander the streets alone, you might miss them out!

Opening Hours: 24-hours

Nearest Station: Moritzplatz

10. Potsdamer Platz

Potsdamer Platz is a one of the more popular shopping and nightlife districts in Berlin. The filmhaus in the Sony Center hosts the annual Berlinale, a Berlin film festival that is not to be missed if you happen to visit then. We suggest visiting at night and you’ll get to see it light up in all its glory. Otherwise, there are also bits of the Berlin Wall which make for great photo moments as well.

Address: Potsdamer Platz, 10785 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: Daily 10am - 9pm (closed on Sundays)

Nearest Station: Potsdamer Platz

Must-try food in Berlin

1. The Bird

There is just one problem you might encounter when dining at The Bird. These thick and juicy burgers won’t be able to fit into your mouth in one bite, no matter how hard you try. Made with freshly ground meat and grilled on the spot, these burgers were a treat on the taste buds.

Address: Am Falkpl. 5, 10437 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: Monday - Thursday 6pm - 11pm | Friday 4pm - 12 am | Weekends 12pm - 11pm

Nearest Station: Schönhauser Allee Station

2. Mustafas Gemusedoner

Be prepared to wait in line for about an hour if you want to sink your teeth into Mustafas kebabs! The perfectly marinated chicken coupled with grilled doner bread, deep fried potatoes, cabbage, sheep’s cheese and a sprinkle of lemon is the perfect combination.

Address: 32 Mehringdamm, 10961 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: Sunday - Thursday 10am - 2am | Friday - Saturday 10am - 5am

Nearest Station: Hackescher Markt

Photo credit: Flickr

3. Currywurst 36

For the uninitiated, the currywurst is a mixture of curry powder, ketchup, Worchester sauce and of course the iconic German Bratwurst. We found that it’s best washed down with a pint of local beer.

Address: Mehringdamm 36, 10961 Berlin, Germany

Opening Hours: Daily 9am - 5am

Nearest Station: Mehringdamm

Photo credit: Curry36.de

Berlin essentials

Berlin City Pass

Visit Berlin's Best attractions hassle free with the Berlin City Pass! With access to the hop off and on bus as well as free entry to over 50 attractions, you'll be able to visit all the best spots with just 1 card. In addition, you have the option to add on a travel card for the rest of your transportation needs.

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