If you don’t mind, we start this list with a more obvious one.
Eastside Gallery is the largest open gallery in the world. It is around 130km and contains more than 100 paintings by artists all over the world. Entrance is for free!
Good to know: Whatever you do, do NOT miss visiting the Eastside Gallery. This is the #1 Must-Things to do in Berlin.
2. Anti-Pub Crawl: Alternative Berlin
Take an alternative, intimate pub crawl of Berlin to experience the city’s nightlife more like a local.
Hop in some of the city’s most amazing spots and actually meet some of the friendly Berliner. Some of the bars you will visit include a Ping-Pong bar, a Goth horror rock bar, an Absinthe bar, beach bars, squat bars, and even burlesque clubs.
See where Rammstein and Marilyn Manson hang out, play ping pong with the locals in Berlin’s iconic Dr. Pong’s or visit some crazy techno clubs and dive bars.
Try a rave, or a hiphop party in an old, bombed-out abandoned train depot. Perhaps you’d prefer a surreal club 3 floors below the city, with a labyrinth of hidden rooms and oddities that you must descend in an elevator to explore.
Scouts, spies, agents, encoders and deceivers are among the oldest professions in the world.
No place is better suited to a spectacular tribute to the major players of this international world of mystery as Potsdamer Platz in the center of Berlin, long considered the capital of spies.
Discover the Berlin of secret agents and espionage at the Spy Museum.
Where the Berlin Wall once divided the city, the Spy Museum Berlin gives a unique insight into the shadowy realm of spying.
Visitors put aside the latest technology to “uncover” the ingenious and sometimes bizarre methods used by agents and secret services. In Germany’s only spy museum, experience a thrilling journey through time from the biblical clients to the present and future in the heart of the capital of spies.
Good to know: It is also one of the cool things to do in Berlin for families. Especially kids between 8 and 14 will have fun. Check out the video below. Your kids may enjoy trying to be a spy, not triggering the lasers.
4. Visit the famous Reichstag (BUT: book ahead of time!)
The German Bundestag is located right around the corner of the Brandenburger Gate (see below).
It is the very city center, you really cannot miss it.
You can visit the building, dome and roof top terrace for free. However, you need to book your visit beforehand on the official website. It is free of charge and you need to bring your passport with you.
My best recommendation is booking an actual tour.
They take care of the entrance ticket for you (no hassle!!)
Skip The Line Ticket
enter the roof top terrace and other restricted areas only tours can access
„Cafe Auszeit“ is a lovely restaurant off the tourist path, located in the district of Wedding.
If you are looking for an authentic Berlin restaurant, this is the place to be. Here you can get some finger food, pasta, burger and a large breakfast if you fancy. The location is very beautiful to visit as it is located at the river bank.
Café Auszeit is especially recommended during summer as they have a big terrace here and delicious home made lemonade. They have some vegetarian options like Halloumi -Burger and vegetarian anit-pasti. Are you looking for vegan food? Then check out the vegan guide to Berlin here.
This restaurant is a 20 minutes walk away from Wallyard Concept Hostel – via public transport 10 minutes.
Another Summer Tip: You can also hop on a river cruise. It takes around 1 hour and takes your along the Berlin Reichstag and the Cathedral. Especially when you are in Berlin over Summer, this is wonderful.
6. The Monkey Bar
We have to admit, this one is slightly touristic, okay okay.
BUT, in our defense: it is pretty cool indeed!
Climb up the monkey bar, get a drink and enjoy the view. The monkey bar is a hip hotel terrace with a direct view to the Berlin Zoo (therefore the name!) and a beautiful view over Berlin.
We love to take a free walking tour on our first day visiting a city.
We tested out several tours and in our opinion Sandeman’s Free Tour is the most compact walking tour.
The tour covers interesting facts about Berlin’s history and Berlin today plus some cool fun facts!
Again, especially recommended for your very first day in Berlin, as you can ask the guide basically everything!
Anyways, there’s so many cool walking tours in Berlin. Simply ask your hostel. For sure they know a great one too!
10. Brandenburger Tor & Holocaust Memorial
There is no way on earth you can miss the Brandenburger Tor (English: Brandenburger Gate).
This is where the wall was opened for only a few minutes before the fall itself. This is where world’s history happened. Curious enough, today there is still the embassy of the U.S.A, France, and Russia.
Around the corner of Brandenburger Gate you will find the world famous Holocaust Memorial – another must-visit in Berlin.
You can walk through the Memorial itself.
Many tourists play here hide&seek while other see this as not appropriate. Please remember that this memorial symbolizes a dark part of German, European and world history.
Every walking tour will cover this sight too.
Fair enough to say: It is not a fun thing to do in Berlin, but one we absolutely recommend.
There is also amazing walking tours for this area. The tour costs only 14€ and takes you to the most important sights and parts of town. It also includes the Holocaust Memorial and other places you just want to see and experience.
There is always something special about abandoned theme parks.
We visited the abandoned water park in Hue, and the Spreepark in Berlin easily competes.
Pack your camera!
Located in south-east Berlin, the Spreepark has been abandoned since 2002. The theme park was actually build in the formerly part of the GDR-controlled East Berlin, and it was actually used until 2002.
Good to know: Unfortunately you cannot visit Spreepark on your own anymore. It is forbidden to enter the area without a guided tour. Although people do it still anyways.
This building will help you almost every single time to get directions on where you are in the city.
But not just that.
Same as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, you can actually go up here and eat.
After all, there’s a restaurant.
Enjoy the panorama floor of Berlin’s TV Tower and take a seat by the window. See the city and all its sights, such as Potsdamer Platz, the Brandenburg Gate, the cathedral and the Olympic Stadium, from 200 meters above the city.
You can actually pre-book a table in the restaurant in the TV Tower for a VIP dinner. Take in scenic views as you enjoy a 2-course lunch from your window seat at the “Sphere” restaurant of Berlin’s TV Tower. See iconic sights such as the Reichstag or Brandenburg Gate from one of the tallest freestanding structures in Europe.
This is obviously one of the romantic things to do in Berlin. Good idea for a date!
While we already love the idea of a Trabbi Safari, the classic VW Bus really had an impact on us.
Both tours in the classic car is amazing. While you drive your own Trabbi car in the tour above, you will be driven by a drive in the classic Volkswagen Bus.
Still cool though!
Enjoy an exceptional and exclusive sightseeing tour in the legendary VW T1 Samba bus. Discover the history of almost 50 (!!!) sights of Berlin in two hours in a vehicle for 7 people.
Travel the guided route through small but interesting side roads, so that your friendly chauffeur can tell you about the different eras of Berlin in just two hours. You also get to know almost forgotten places and discover the origins of the city.
It is located directly at the famous Checkpoint Charlie, another sight you have to visit anyways.
The museum was founded on October 19th, 1962, shortly after the construction of the Berlin Wall, as a protest against the Wall and to provide assistance to the people seeking help.
The Berlin Wall Museum was formed with the purpose of fighting against human rights violations as a result of the wall. Gradually the museum increased its exhibition space and contributed to the fall of the Wall.
The museum had a vital role in history and the objects on display in the museum provide evidence of this.
They are original artifacts from successful escapes such as a hot-air balloon, a mini-submarine, cars and airplanes. People helping East Germans to flee used the museum as a base from which they planned the escapes and organized resistance to the unjust GDR regime.
After escaping, the refugees and their helpers donated their various means of conveyance and other objects to the museum.
If I told you a few things on how people escape from East Berlin, you wouldn’t believe it.
Again, if you are interested in German and late European History, come here. You will enjoy this one. It takes you around 2 hours to visit everything in the Berlin Wall Museum.
Good to know: You see, this is not a museum built AFTER the fall of wall, it was actually part of it. Seriously one of the unique things to do in Berlin.
Berlin and Graffiti – that goes literally hand in hand.
Learn the story of graffiti in Berlin on a graffiti walking tour, seeing the latest and best examples of Berlin street art. Later, make your own urban masterpiece in a hands-on workshop with real local artists.
It is one of the cheap things to do. And for sure, a very “berliny” activity, we’d say.
We felt in love with this place on our very first day we visited Berlin back in 2008.
„An einem Sonntag im August“ simply means on a Sunday in August. Enjoy a delicious brunch with not a big but tasty selection, or the daily menu.
But wait, here is our actual recommendation: This place is 100% typical Berlin.
Stop by for the evening or a special event. There are quite a lot of music concerts to enjoy, so get their latest updates and events on their Facebook page.
Last but not least: The area is fantastic to discover more of the Berlin nightlife. Beer garden, simple bar or cocktail bar – you have a wide selection of choice here! They also host live concerts here.