The capital of Germany is a city that has been wounded, destroyed, rebuilt and has become the protagonist of the history of Europe and the world over the past 60 years.
Also famous for the wall that divided it into two parts, from the post-war period to 1989, Berlin has been able to re-evaluate and rediscover its treasures of the history of humanity, hidden by this dark period.
To this day, it is also known as one of the capitals of electronic music , design and fashion.
So let’s find out together what to see in Berlin !
1 – Zoo
Like all big cities, Berlin too has its large urban park , ideal for a few moments of relaxation in the open air: we are talking about the Tiergarten, located in the western part of the city, between the Brandenburg Gate and the Zoologischer Garten Berlin.
The Tiergarten is the largest and oldest park in Berlin and extends for 210 hectares, including paths, lakes and large meadows, also populated by various species of animals and plants. It is a place especially loved by the locals , who come here for a lunch in the woods, to relax a bit or to play some sport. At the center is the imposing Siegessäule , or the Victory Column, one of the most famous monuments in the capital.
The Tiergarten is easily reached on foot from the Brandenburg Gate, from which you can reach the Victory Column (1.9 km, 23 min). Reference metro stop U Hansaplatz, line U9 – Get directions
2 – Brandenburg Gate
The Brandenburg Gate, or rather the Brandenburger Tor , is a real symbol of the city and of Germany . This is one of the best points from which to start an itinerary in the German capital.
Emblem of the division of the two Germanys at the time of the Cold War, once the Wall fell it instead became the image of a united country again. But that’s not all: this square has an important historical value also because many events, rallies and protests were held here! Designed by Carl Gotthard Langhans in 1791, it has a neoclassical style and consists of twelve columns surmounted by the famous Quadriga by Johann Gottfried Schadow.
It is located on Pariser Platz. Easy walking distance to the Reichstag (500m, 6 min). Reference metro station Brandenburger Tor, line U5
3 – Reichstag
The Reichstag building, in German Reichstagsgebäude , is one of the symbols of the city and an essential stop on any trip to Berlin.
Today the seat of the German parliament , it is also an important historical site: among the various events, the birth of the German Republic was proclaimed from one of the windows of this building in 1918. The building was then almost completely destroyed by fire in 1933 and, during the war, it was also used as a clinic for new births. Finally, in 1990, the official ceremony of the reunification of Germany was celebrated here.
Despite being a government building, today a part of the parliament is open to the public: it is indeed possiblevisit its large glass dome . At the entrance, ask for the free audio guide in Italian and walk along the large internal walkways admiring the city and listening to its history.
4 – Hamburg train station
If you love contemporary art you certainly can’t miss the Hamburger Bahnhof, a museum housed in a former railway station , hence the name Bahnhof , or station in Italian. The location is truly unique and alone is worth the visit!
The Hamburger Bahnhof houses masterpieces of contemporary art from 1960 to today and is the most important contemporary art space in the city. Here are exhibited many works by Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein, but also by Keith Haring, Anselm Kiefer and many others.
5 – Museum Island and Pergamonmuseum
Museum Island, or in German Museumsinsel , is the museum district of Berlin , declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here there are numerous museums, but among all the most famous is certainly the Pergamonmuseum. Being one of the most visited attractions in the city , we advise you to buy the entrance ticket in advance , to avoid the long queues at the ticket offices.
Housed in a wonderful and imposing building, the Pergamonmuseum preserves testimonies from different historical periods, from the Roman Empire to Ancient Greece, from the Middle East to the sections dedicated to Anterior Asia and Islamic Art. But the strong point of the whole collection is certainly the great Babylon Gate!
6 – Berlin Cathedral
The Berlin Cathedral, Berliner Dom in German , is located in the Museuminsel and is the main Protestant place of worship in the German capital.
The visit is free with the Berlin WelcomeCard .
The building that we can admire today dates back to 1904, the result of a renovation commissioned by Emperor William II to adequately reflect not only the greatness of the Lutheran religion, but also the prestige of the royal dynasty . The building is 114 m long, 73 m wide and 116 m high, at its top is a large copper dome, decorated inside with paintings depicting scenes from the New Testament and the Reformation period.
As soon as you enter you can admire the large windows, while the 4 great masters of the Protestant religion and the Lutheran reform are depicted on the central pillars : Luther, Melanchthon, Zwingli and Calvin. Don’t miss the Baptism Chapel , the Hohenzollern Crypt and the marvelous Pipe Organ , which has 7,269 pipes and 113 registers. It is also possible to reach the top of the dome by climbing 270 steps: from here you can admire the whole city.
7 – Alexanderplatz and TV Tower
Alexanderplatz is one of the most famous squares in Berlin , loved and frequented by both Berliners and tourists. The square itself cannot be said to be an example of architecture, on the contrary, it is messy and frenetic, but it represents one of the hearts of the city . It is also an important hub for city traffic: in fact, 20 bus and tram lines pass through here.
Recognizing it is really simple, as here is the iconic Berliner Fernsehturm , or the Television Tower, which with its 365 m high is visible from every point of the city! It has now become one of the symbols of Berlin and will allow you to admire the entire German capital from above. The observatory is approximately 200m high and also houses a revolving restaurant and bar.
Admission is included in the Berlin WelcomeCard .
8 – Berlin Wall and East Side Gallery
With the end of the Second World War and the defeat of Germany, the German capital was divided between the Allies and, in 1961, the famous Berlin Wall was built. This wall divided Berlin into a Soviet and an American part , stretched over 170 km and was about 10 m high. For years people have been divided between East and West, with two completely different lifestyles. This until November 9, 1989, when the wall was torn down and Germany was reunified. To date, only 1 km of the ancient wall
remains intact . In 1990, to celebrate the reunification of Germany, dozens of artists decorated the Wall with murals and works of art, which later became famous all over the world.The mural-rich stretch of wall is known as the East Side Gallery , located in the eastern part of the city, overlooking the course of the River Spree.
The East Gallery is located on Mühlenstraße. Easily accessible on foot from the Markthalle Neun (1.3 km, 15 min). Reference Metro Station Warschauer Straße, lines U1 and U3