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Top things to do in Berlin this summer


Summer is here, so take a look at our guide to the top 10 things to do in Berlin, from relaxing with friends on the Spree to exploring the capital’s World Heritage sites

Emily Scrivener,

Enjoy a beer in Berlin’s oldest beer garden
Prater is Berlin’s oldest and arguably most popular beer garden. There’s a genial atmosphere here, with outdoor, shared tables set under large chestnut trees. Enjoy home-made Berliner cuisine and seasonal specialties with your beer.


Take a dip in Berlin’s floating swimming pool
Moored on the river Spree, Arena Badeschiff swimming pool is literally one of the coolest places to spend summer in the German capital. The 32-metre-long pool offers welcome relief from the heat of the city as well as being a great place to relax, sunbathe and swim with friends. It also presents impressive views of some of the city's most renowned landmarks.


Enjoy an ice cream
Berlin has a countless cafés offering hot, fast and cheap food, yet come summer ice cream parlours dominate the city’s streets. Kauf Dich Glücklich is a favourite, serving about 60 flavours in a retro boutique.


Beach Mitte
Why not challenge friends to a game of volleyball on Europe’s largest beach-volleyball court? Located in the centre of Berlin, Beach Mitte is a huge sandy sports and bar complex, providing the perfect combination for spending a day with friends. Those who want to skip sports activities can simply enjoy basking in the sun with a couple of cocktails. This summer Beach Mitte is also showing the World Cup games on giant screens.


Hire a bike
Berlin has a great bicycle culture and offers lots of bike rental outlets across the city. Join an organised bike tour or simply follow the bike routes, many of which will take you to some of the capital’s main sites. Alternatively take a bike trip around the Tiergarten, one of Berlin’s biggest parks.


Indulge in tax free shopping
Berlin is home to Europe’s largest department store, KaDeWe, whose huge range of designer brands will satisfy even the most ardent customers. Visitors can browse brands from Dolce & Gabbana and Marc Jacobs to Tom Ford and pick up this season’s must-have pieces.


Catch a film in the park
Don’t miss the opportunity to spend an evening under the stars at Freiluftkino Friedrichshain, one of Berlin’s top open-air movie theatres, located in the Volkspark Friedrichshain. Arrive early to secure a deckchair and pick up refreshments, or bring a rug and your own food. Classic and cult films are shown as well as films from the current season. Foreign films are presented in their original language with German subtitles, and German films have English subtitles.


Picnic at Tiergarten
Escape Berlin’s urban clamour and head to Grosser Tiergarten, the city’s oldest and largest park. Once the hunting ground of kings, it is now known as the green heart of Berlin and is perfect for whiling away a sunny day. Stroll around its 210 hectares, have a picnic and enjoy one of the summer concerts that take place every Sunday from July until September.


Cruise on the Spree
Spend an afternoon discovering the city from its pretty waterway. You’ll take in a host of landmarks, from Moltkebrücke and the Reichstag (Parliament) to Berliner Dom, or cathedral. A cruise is perfect for a family outing or if you’re looking to impress a date.


Spend a day on Museumsinsel
Located on the northern tip of the Spree Island, the museum complex is home to many of Berlin’s most important galleries. Listed as a World Heritage site, the five museums, built between 1824 and 1930, are a must-see regardless of the time of year.

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