THE ULTIMATE 5-DAY BERLIN SIGHTSEEING ITINERARY FOR THE FIRST-TIME VISITOR
First up, where to stay?
Like all major cities in the world Berlin offers a wide range of accommodation catering for all budgets. However, you get real value for money here as even the top 5-star hotels offer fantastic bargain offers. Overall Berlin is the most cost-effective metropolis of all with prices for good central hotels starting from £49 per person!
But with more than 700 hotels, many of them 3 and 4-star, spread all over the city it is easy to lose track on where to stay. So, leave this to us, we do the research for you and constantly look out for good deals. With our in-depth Berlin knowledge and constant vetting of hotels we make sure you get the perfect place for your Berlin stay.
Just drop us a line: firstname.lastname@example.org and we send you an offer within 24hs. And not just that, we also offer you a best price guarantee. Find it cheaper somewhere online, we better the price for you!
Ultimate 5-day Berlin sightseeing itinerary for the first-time visitor
When you arrive at Berlin Schoenefeld Airport, go collect your Berlin Welcome Card – the official tourist card | visitBerlin.de from the tourist office. It covers all public transport and offers you a great deal of discounts for attractions and sites for your ultimate 5-day Berlin sightseeing itinerary.
The airport is quite far out so we recommend taking the train to your hotel. Depending on where you stay, it takes anything between 20-40min. It’s easy to navigate around Berlin and surprisingly efficient. There’s no need to take a taxi which will most likely take longer anyway.
Arrive at your hotel, we recommend staying in MITTE if you are first time visitor, settle and find your bearings. Then get straight into your Berlin sightseeing action.
First up a visit to the historic German parliament, the Reichstag. We highly recommend booking a guided tour which takes around 2 hours and can be booked through us. One highlight is a visit to the iconic vista rooftop with its glass dome. Attention, amazing views guaranteed! Afterwards, stroll around the government quarter and check out Berlin’s shortest underground line which only has 2 stops! Relax on the lush green spaces and let the first impressions sink in.
Start off early your Berlin sightseeing tour with a visit to the iconic Brandenburg Gate, the world-renowned symbol of Berlin. Step from East to West and enjoy the get a first feel for the grandeur of Berlin.
Immerse yourself into the former East German splendour boulevard Unter den Linden, one of Berlin’s finest postcodes and home to embassies and luxurious living quarters.
Right next to it you find the Memorial to the murdered Jews of Europe. A sombre site remembering Germanies dark past. The sombre atmosphere catches you right on, reflect a minute and pay your respects.
A short walk away is the Potsdamer Platz with its futuristic architecture. The area used to be a wasteland with the Berlin Wall running through it and has become a completely new neighbourhood.
Then it is time for your first insight into Berlin’s long Cold War history with a visit to the, German Spy Museum – Berlin’s Hands-On History Museum (deutsches-spionagemuseum.de). It is a cool museum dedicated to the history of espionage in separated Berlin. Highly entertaining and massively engaging. Did anyone say 007?!
Afterwards you see some remains of the actual Berlin wall at the Topographie des Terrors site. It is an outdoor museum about the persecution of minorities during Nazi Germany. One of Berlin’s most visited sites which serves as a warning to current and future generations.
A short stroll away is the iconic Checkpoint Charlie, where the US sector met the Soviet one. Nowhere in the world were the two arch enemies of the Cold War closer to each other. Please do take the obligatory pictures!
The final stop on your first day is one of prettiest squares in Berlin. The beautifully restored Gendarmenmarkt is home to two churches, a concert house, luxurious hotels, and apartments. The perfect harmony of the architecture amazes every visitor.
A little further up the road and less well known is the amazing Bebelplatz. Beautiful 18th century baroque buildings line the square which is also infamous for the “Book Burning” of the Nazis in 1933.
Time to do some serious shopping. Then look further and head to the famous Friedrichstrasse. A legendary entertainment and shopping mile full of fine boutiques, international chains, theatres, and restaurants. It offers all you would expect from any modern metropolis. But history is never far away in Berlin. It’s easy to forget that the former border and the Berlin Wall ran straight through.
Soon you will come across the Palace of Tears. A glass steel structure which was a major crossing between East and West Berlin where Western Berliners were allowed to visit their friends, relatives, and partners in the East, but not the other way around. It got his names from the heart-breaking farewells that regularly occurred here. Imagine yourself saying goodbye to your loved one not knowing when or even if you will ever meet again. Sigh…
Cultural highlight alert next! It is time to visit Berlin’s amazing Museum Island Berlin Berlin: tickets, museums & more | visitBerlin.de. 5 fantastic museums on 1 island. From ancient roman artefacts, classical paintings to modern art. Choose one or visit all of them!
Right next door you find the Berliner Dom and the recently rebuilt Berliner Schloss. The latter was destroyed during WW2 and demolished by the East government which then built their own parliament building on the site which was in return demolished by the West German government. Revenge is a dish best served cold!
And there is another cultural highlight which has recently opened its doors to the public. The fantastic Humboldt Forum, Berlin’s newest and soon to be most popular landmark museum of non-European art. Even before it has fully opened it is right up here with the MOMA in New York or the British Museum in London. A must see!
Afterwards cross give your mind a rest. Cross the Rathausbruecke and take a stroll through the beautiful Nicolaiviertel. One of the oldest quarters of Berlin its neo-classical architecture makes it one of the prettiest quarters yet often overlooked by many visitors. Hot Tip!
Head East to the Alexanderplatz, the former showcase square of the Eastern German government with its towering Official website of the Berlin TV Tower – Enjoy the city from above (tv-turm.de) from where you can catch great views over Berlin.
From here it is only a short stroll to the Mauerpark. A natural green space on the former border stretch. Especially in summer months this park is buzzing with cultural events and a flea market. One man’s waste is another man’s treasure. The often-eccentric sellers trade everything! A great spot for a unique gift for your loved ones at home.
Neighbouring Prenzlauer Berg and Friedrichshain are the creative quarters and cultural hubs of Berlin. Full of independent shops, cafes, bars, restaurants, and clubs, both areas create a catching energy you won’t be able to hide from. It is the place to be, visit and live in nowadays. And surely has its place on your ultimate 5-day Berlin sightseeing itinerary to visit on your Berlin too.
And for club lovers, you can find the world famous Berghain here and tons of small backyard clubs and bars tucked away in small alleys and courtyards. Go discover!
Time to head West today. See the Memorial Church, the symbol of west Berlin. Then take a stroll along the famous shopping and entertainment mile Kudamm. It is basically the equivalent of the Friedrichstrasse in the East. A little less glam maybe if it would not be for the KaDeWe. Berlin’s answer to Harrods and La Fayette. We highly recommend visiting their food hall and bar on top. Here, they serve the best Budvar beer outside Czech! Hot Tip!
Another highlight of your ultimate 5-day Berlin sightseeing itinerary is the Home / BIKINI BERLIN – The Concept Shopping Mall . A unique and vibrant shopping mall like no other. Away from the boring chains, conceptual designer shops, art exhibitions and great food stalls fill this former apartment block.
Only a short 5min train ride away is the magnificent Charlottenburg Palace/ Old Palace | visitBerlin.de. You feel like you travelled back in time, yet you are still in the city when you walk the lavish parkland garden of the baroque palace. A much-welcomed respite from the hectic city life and a glorious site to visit on your Berlin sightseeing break.
And that’s it! Really? Yes, that’s your 5-day Berlin sightseeing tour finished already. And you have still only scratched the surface. Berlin has still loads more on offer whether you want to dig deeper into the cultural gems, its Cold War past, historical sites, explore the different quarters or party without limits.
And we haven’t even mentioned Potsdam, Berlin’s amazingly beautiful small neighbour where German royalty built their palaces and residences. No, there is more, much more! Berlin is booming and constantly creating something new to discover on your next trip.
Prices start from £349 per person and include 6 nights accommodation + Berlin Welcome Card and free itinerary planning. Contact us here for more info about the ultimate 5-day Berlin sightseeing itinerary for the first-time visitor.
See you in Berlin!