Without a doubt, summer is the best time to visit the stunning and vibrant city of Berlin. It’s during the high season, with hopefully some amazing weather, that the city really bursts into life, and the locals come out to play. Wandering through the sunny streets and it seems there’s a never-ending array of attractions and events to attend; with art, history, theatre and music all readily available at your fingertips.
It feels like one giant carnival, with amazing performances in the streets, an exciting café and bar culture, some of the best dance clubs to be found anywhere, and of course Berlin’s world famous street art scene which is not to be missed. Here we present just the tip of the iceberg for some awesome attractions that are best to visit in summer.
1. Simply wander the streets
Leave the map at home and follow your nose in Berlin on a sunny day, and you’ll probably end up having one of you best ever travel experiences. You never know what you’re going to find round each corner, from world class street theatre and gorgeous art exhibitions to random flash mobs and impromptu music gigs!
It’s like there’s just been some kind of life explosion in the city, and with such a turbulent history, it’s no wonder that Berlin has risen from the ashes to become one of (if not THE) coolest city in the world. You’ll meet some amazing new friends just stepping out your front door and getting lost. Trust us!
2. Visit the parks
Berlin might be a huge, bustling, cosmopolitan metropolis, but it’s got its fair share of green space for you to while away an afternoon in, and the city’s many parks have plenty to offer. Whether you’re just taking a stroll, reading a book, walking the pooch, or having a romantic picnic; you’ll find the perfect place to do so in Berlin. The most famous of these is probably the Tiergarten, which is 210 hectares of lush green walkways and water features, and the most popular of the city parks.
However, if you’re looking for something a little more unusual, try heading to Tempelhofer Frieheit, which is a huge park in place of the disused Tempelhof airport. It’s become very popular with locals since it was opened in 2011, and you can even explore the abandoned airport buildings! You’ll also find BBQ spots, miniature golf, cycling and kite flying when the wind gets up and you can be sure it does in this vast open space – it used to be an airport remember?!
3. Urban Exploration
While we’re on the subject of exploring the airport’s abandoned buildings, urban exploration enthusiasts will adore Berlin. It’s a veritable treasure trove of crumbling and desolate sites, all begging to be explored and photographed. Just make sure you’re not trespassing and you’re keeping yourselves safe at all times!
Don’t forget that Berlin is also the number one city in the world for street art and graffiti, so while you’re getting lost exploring abandoned landmarks, you’re sure to come across some outstanding pieces in a variety of mediums dotted around town. Many sites are left to ruin as result of the Second World War, but many are just allowed to decay in their own right – like the eerie “Blub Berlin” abandoned water park in Neukölln. Whatever you’re looking to explore, you’ll find something to excite your inner adventurer all across the city.
4. Bike and Boat tours
What better way to indulge in the glorious weather than on the back of a bike, or chilling out in the back of a boat! The city waterways are popular when the sun finally peaks out and there are plenty of options to suit every taste and budget for viewing the city from the vantage point of the water.
Did you know that Berlin has FIVE TIMES as many bridges as Venice? Neither did we! Wow! But if you don’t have your sea legs, then perhaps exploring the city from the saddle is more your cup of tea. Berlin has over 1000 km of cycle track to discover, and you can go yourself or utilise one of the specialist bike tour operators in the city. So what are you waiting for? Get on your bike!
5. Jewish Memorial Brandenburg Gate
On a little more of a sombre note, you must pay a visit to the Jewish Memorial in Berlin. Conveniently located next to the famous and iconic Brandenburg Gate, the holocaust memorial was completed in 2005 and has become a popular place of reflection and remembrance since. It’s even more moving and dramatic in wet weather too.
The Brandenburg Gate is arguably Berlin’s most famous landmark, and is a must visit if you’re coming to the city. The 18th Century attraction draws in the crowds every summer, and we think you should take an afternoon (or a full day) to compare and contrast these two very different historical monuments. Don’t forget to bring your handkerchiefs.
6. Outdoor cinema
Going to the cinema to watch a movie is a classic choice if the clouds open and it starts to chuck it down. But what about going to an OUTDOOR cinema? Not when it’s chucking it down, obviously. You’re in luck! Berlin, as we might have mentioned before, is one of the most artistic cities in the world and it’s certainly no stranger to cinema.
So what better way to enjoy the magic of the silver screen than to take in a movie at one of the city’s outdoor cinema hot-spots? It’s perfect for a warm summer night with the stars in the sky and the sweet taste of popcorn in your mouth, even though salted is so much better. Try the Volkspark Friedrichshain Open-Air Cinema as just one of many options. They allow guests to bring their own food and drink, and the cinema is set in a beautiful park too! Just make sure you don’t watch anything really bad and ruin an awesome night!
7. The Berlin Wall
We tried, but we couldn’t get through a list of Berlin attractions without mentioning the Berlin Wall. It’s probably the most (in)famous thing about the city, but thankfully there’s very little of the wall remaining as it was torn down in 1988.
There are still some sections standing for those willing to go in search of this dark history, as well as some amazing re-creations to be found, such as the East Side Gallery. Often confused for the original, terrifying structure, the gallery is in fact an amazing art installation and is a must-see on a sunny day for some striking and powerful work. The only good thing about this kind of wall is you can paint art on it.
Ask anyone who has been to Berlin and the vast majority of them will tell you it’s up there with the coolest, hippest, FUNNEST, most happening places on the face of the earth – and we couldn’t agree more! There’s so much to see and do in this awesome city that we’ve barely scratched the surface here, but please don’t take our word for it, go and find out for yourselves why Berlin rocks!
(Especially in the summer!)