If you only have one day in a city, you’ll want to see and do things that are unique or special in that city. For a city rich in both history and culture such as Berlin, that means discovering history and celebrating art. If you only have 24 hours in Berlin, we recommend that you definitely visit the following Berlin highlights.

Museum Island

Berlin’s best and most famous museums can be found on Museuminsel, a small island in the Spree. Here you will find five renowned museums as well as Berlin Cathedral. You could easily spend all day here but if your time in Berlin is limited we recommend you choose one or two. And if you start your day here, the museums are likely to be less crowded.

Each museum has its own speciality or theme: the Altes Museum is dedicated to classical antiquity; the Neues Museum combines geographically and thematically related exhibits with Egyptian art, prehistoric objects and classical antiquities; the Alte Nationalgalerie houses paintings and sculptures from Classicism, Romanticism, Biedermeier, Impressionism and the early Modern Age. While the Bode Museum displays a unique collection of sculptures from the Middle Ages to the 19th century and the Pergamom Museum, Berlin’s most visited museum, is home to the Collection of Classical Antiquities, the Museum of the Ancient Near East and the Museum of Islamic Art.

River cruise

To give yourself time to properly consider all you’ve seen at the museums we suggest heading over to the Domaquareé pier near the DDR Museum and Berliner Dom for a 1-hour cruise along the Spree. It is the perfect way to enjoy a relaxed tour of the inner city sights while also seeing the city from a different perspective, from the water!

After the cruise it’s time to get some lunch, there are several great restaurants and café’s in the area, even along the river bank. Or start heading for your next destination and see if you find something to your liking along the way.

Article continues below
City Sightseeing bus + Berlin Wassertaxi
A Top Choice
Book now
City Sightseeing bus + Berlin Wassertaxi

Government District

Some of Berlin’s most iconic and world famous landmarks can be found in the centre of the city in the Government District. At the heart of the district stands the Brandenburg Gate, once the symbol of the country’s separation between West and East Berlin, today it is a symbol of the German reunification. Just around the corner from the gate, you will find Germany’s parliament and centre of power, the Reichstag Building. If you fancy seeing the impressive glass dome from inside and learn more about its history then make sure to register for it in advance.

On the other side of the Brandenburg Gate from the Reichstag Building is a more solemn place to visit, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. The memorial consists of 2711 columns forming a vast maze-like location for reflection with an underground exhibition room. After visiting the memorial, we recommend heading across the street to Tiergarten.

This is one of Berlin’s most popular parks and sometimes referred to as the lungs of the city. Tiergarten is the city’s largest public park with the Victory Column at its centre surrounded by landscaped gardens, large open spaces, a boating lake, cafés and beer gardens. A great place for an afternoon drink and to catch some fresh air.

East Side Gallery

After some fresh air in the park, it is time for some art unique to Berlin on the opposite side of town. If you are looking for an easy way to get around the city at your own convenience while still seeing all the sights, we recommend getting a ticket for the Berlin City Sightseeing bus. They’ll bring you all over Berlin and you can hop on and hop off as many times as you want throughout the day.

On the bank of the Spree near the Oberbaumbrücke, you can visit the East Side Gallery, the longest open-air gallery in the world. It consists of the longest remaining section of the Berlin Wall, which was, after the wall fell, decorated by artists from 21 countries. The East Side Gallery stands both as a symbol of joy over the end of Germany’s division and as a historical reminder of the inhumanity of the GDR border regime.

24 hours in Berlin: what not to miss

Sunset views

For an incredible view across the city at sunset, head to the TV Tower on Alexanderplatz. This unmissable part of the capital city skyline soars 368 metres into the sky, with an observation deck at 203 metres off the ground. A lift will take you up so you can get a breath-taking panorama view of the city.

When you are ready for dinner, head south to the neighbourhoods of Kreuzberg, Friedrichshain and Prenzlauer Berg. Here, you will find some of Berlin’s best and culturally most diverse restaurants as well street food stalls, enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.

And after dinner, if you still have energy left, it is time to discover Berlin’s vibrant nightlife. Berlin’s legendary night clubs and various bars are sure to entertain you when the streets are dark. In famous clubs like Berghain, you can dance your heart out all night long. For a more relaxed atmosphere head to on of the rooftop bars or for a more unique icy experience, try the Berlin Icebar!