As spring arrives it is time to look at the all the amazing outdoor activities Berlin has to offer. The warmer weather transforms the city’s parks and streets, the beer gardens open their doors and there are plenty of festivals to enjoy. Here are some of our favourite things about Berlin in spring.

Walking tours

Spring is the perfect time to discover the German capital on foot as the summer heat hasn’t arrived yet. Berlin is a sprawling city so you won’t find one walking tour for the entire city. Instead you can take your pic between walking tours dedicated to different parts of the city or different themes.

You can choose between self-guided walks, which means you can go at any time you like, or guided walking tours where you can ask the guides for more information. City Sightseeing Berlin offers a self-guided walking tour through Mitte in their app for free and you can use their Hop-on Hop-off bus to get from one part of the city to the next.

River cruise

With the sun coming out, there is nothing quite like enjoying the feeling of the warm rays of the sun on your face while you cruise along the water. If you want to relax while you enjoy the view, you can go on an 1-hour cruise with Stern & Kreisschiffahrt. They'll take you past Museum Island, the Reichstag, the House of World Cultures and many more sights, and they’ll tell you about the things you see along the way as well.

If you prefer to take a more active part in your travels, the capital city of Germany has plenty of canoe and kayak options as well. You can often rent a vessel to go out on your own or you can join a guided tour to discover the hidden gems of the city.

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The festival season starts going strong in spring with different festivals popping up around the city throughout the season. There are music festivals such as Desertfest and Fête de la Musique, the first is an annual festival that takes places across Europe and is set at the former Tempelhof airport. The second is a free festival taking place all over the city with all styles of music at the very end of the spring season.

Spring also features several film festivals in the city, including achtung berlin Filmfestival, the Greek Film Festival, and the 13. ALFILM – Arab Film Festival. Other festivals to enjoy include ARTS meet WINE in the southern Alt-Lichtenrade district and the not to miss Carnival of Cultures.

City parks

Berlin is home to more than 2,500 parks and gardens and they are the perfect place to observe the changes in nature in spring time. Of course there is Tiergarten, the biggest and best known park in the city with its landscaped gardens, large open spaces, boating lake, cafés and beer gardens. But there are many more less obvious parks to visit.

Such as Mauerpark, where many locals come to play games, listen to local musicians, and lay in the grass when the weather is good. Get a couple of drinks at a Späti (small shops that stay open until late in the night) and spend a relaxing day at the park. Or head to Britzer Garten with its spring tulip exhibition, wide paths and numerous playgrouds.

Royal palaces

In May the first castles will open their doors to the public again, including Charlottenburg Palace and Sanssouci Palace in Potsdam. Charlottenburg Palace and it's palace gardens are a haven from the hectic city pace. Given to the first Queen consort of Prussia, Sophie Charlotte, by her husband, this beautiful rococo palace and its elegant gardens are among Berlin's largest and most magnificent.

There is no other palace so closely linked to Frederick the Great, Sophie’s grandson, as Sanssouci Palace. Sanssouci was his summer retreat and ultimately his favourite place and sanctuary in difficult times. The palace is flanked by vineyard terraces and the interior of the palace remains the same as it was in the 18th century.

Tips for visiting Berlin in spring

Bars in Kreuzberg

The Kreuzberg bar scene is as diverse as the district itself. Once the district was enclosed on three sides by the Berlin Wall and the Spree river on the fourth side. Today, Kreuzberg is the cultural heart of Berlin, with bars, restaurants, thrift stores, cafés, street art, food stalls and parks. It’s easy to spend a spring day here.

You can find lists of the top bars in Kreuzberg all over the internet, but here there are new bars opening all the time with something for everyone. Some of our favourites include the stylish hidden gem Fahimi Bar, affordable and fun Mano Café, classic Würgeengel, craft beer paradise Hopfenreich, and former apothecary ORA bar.