If New York is the city that never sleeps, Berlin is the city that’s always changing. This tour offers you a nuanced overview, featuring all the places that epitomise the milestones of the city’s complex history.
We’ll show you what there is to see, and also open your eyes to what lies beneath the surface: the faint traces, the stories, and the voices that warrant no memorials, but tell you just as much about life in Berlin across the ages.
Join us on this trip from Berlin’s beginnings in the swamplands of Brandenburg, through Prussian imperialism and the raucous years of the Weimar Republic, to the Second World War, the Cold War, the ecstasy of reunification, to the vibrant capital that is today’s Berlin.
If you’re short on time and looking to make the most of it, our Berlin Highlights tour covers almost 1,000 years of the city’s history in the space of a day – all the sights, the sounds and the stories.
(All of our private tours are custom tailored to our clients’ needs and wishes and can include Berlin sights decided in advance or spontaneously organised on the day of the tour. If you have any specific requests for your tour, regarding sights and content, do not hesitate to ask – you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org)
What you can expect to experience on this tour:
Within the four hours of this private Berlin Highlights tour, you will discover the city’s major and many minor sights – focusing on the central historic Mitte district and the five grand squares – the Lustgarten, Bebelplatz, Gendarmenmarkt, Wilhelmplatz & Pariserplatz – that dominate the area.
Starting close to Alexanderplatz, and in view of the Television Tower (Fernsehturm), your tour will explore the birthplace of the city – the original settlement of Cölln and neighbouring Berlin – through the Nikolaiviertel to visit the oldest remaining building in central Berlin – the protestant Nikolaikirche.
Across the River Spree, the tour continues into the former Prussian Royal Quarter and the site of the Stadtschloss (City Palace) before exploring the UNESCO World Heritage listed Museumsinsel to be introduced to the five world-class state museums to be found on this natural island. In the shadow of the impressive Berliner Dom, you can admire the Neo-Classical Altes Museum and the former royal kitchen garden – the Lustgarten – used in the 1930s as the site of numerous Nazi parades.
Along the main Unter den Linden boulevard, you will pass the former armoury building, the princess and prince’s residences, and the former guardhouse (now Germany’s central war memorial) before arriving at Bebelplatz – and the main campus of the celebrated Humboldt University. Commonly referred to as the ‘Nazi Book Burning Square’ – for a ceremonial book burning the year of the National Socialist seizure of power – Bebelplatz leads to the nearby Gendarmenmarkt and the former French Huguenot Quarter of the city.
Dipping south to the Checkpoint Charlie border crossing, the tour continues into the former Nazi government quarter – via one of the few remaining pieces of the Berlin Wall. Continuing along Wilhelmstrasse from the former SS/Gestapo Headquarters (now the Topography of Terror Museum), the tour passes the former Nazi Airforce Ministry and Wilhelmplatz before visiting the site of Hitler’s Führerbunker and the adjacent Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe.
Germany’s central landmark, the Brandenburg Gate – the symbol of the country’s division and reunification – is only a short walk away on the Pariserplatz (the site of the American and French Embassies; with the British and Russian Embassies nearby). Then it’s on to the current German government quarter and the Reichstag building before following the river to Friedrichstrasse and the city’s theatre district.
As this is our prime tour, offering a complete overview of Berlin’s Highlights, there is the possibility to continue into the former Jewish district of the city or the Tiergarten central park and diplomatic quarter nearby. With adequate time given to the main sights, it would also be possible to head into the West of the city – on request – to cover some of the main ground there – the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtnis-Kirche, the West Berlin Zoo, the Kufurstendamm shopping street and the Kadewe, for instance.
The length of this tour means that a short snack/coffee break (not included in the tour price) can be integrated into the route – or, if requested, a longer meal break – at the detriment of the route and a number of the sites mentioned above.
Special Tour Inclusions:
It is possible that the following sites could also be included in the itinerary (on request and time permitting – an extension of the tour duration may be required):
Visit the former Jewish Quarter of the city
Visit the former royal chocolatiers
Entrance to one/or more of the Museum Island state museums
Visit the Jewish Museum
Visit the Television Tower (Fernsehturm)
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
Four hour Berlin Highlights private walking tour accompanied by one of our expert local guides (English language)
Collection from hotel/accommodation or tour start from central landmark (such as TV Tower/Brandenburg Gate)
Hotel/accommodation drop-off at end of tour (if requested)
Includes time for coffee/snack break (not included in price)
Includes time for photo breaks
Price includes VAT (19%)
Price includes Booking Fee
Price includes Mandatory German Tour Insurance
Whats not included in this tour.Items that are not included in the cost of tour price.
This tour does not include private transportation
This tour does not include entrance fees
This tour does not include food/drink (unless requested)
Our private tours can start anywhere in the cityCollection from your hotel/accommodation or central landmark
Our private tours run year round - whatever the weatherIf you're travelling in the winter season - make sure to wrap up!
In the event you need to cancel your booking with us, we ask for at least two weeks hours notice. Tours booked within two weeks of the tour date are not eligible for cancellation.
We will refund the total amount (minus any transaction fees) if we receive an email cancellation request at least two weeks before the tour/s. Cancellations made less than two weeks before the tour date are not eligible for refunds.
In order to guarantee the best guides and transportation for our tours, we have a two-week cancellation deadline that means that guides who are scheduled for tours are compensated for their time (often allocated to mean that they are not able to accept other work on the days we book them). We offer our commitment to our transportation suppliers in the same manner.
Our shorter tours (up to three & four hours) include time for a short coffee/snack break – our longer tours (5 hours and above) include time for a longer lunch break and also short coffee/snack break.
Some of our tours include public transportation tickets for up to five people in the total price, please check the tour descriptions on the tour pages for more information. If public transportation costs are not included in our tours descriptions but you would prefer to use transportation for the tour, we would be happy to arrange the particulars. Our car/van tours are all conducted with fully air-conditioned high-quality cars/vans (usually Mercedes Benz or Volkswagen).
They certainly are; although Berlin winters can be cold and we certainly recommend wrapping up. And don’t forget the sun lotion in the summer!
Berlin is a relatively flat city and the streets are easy to navigate. Despite being the German capital, Berlin is also not nearly as busy as other cities of a similar calibre. All this means that touring can be relatively stress-free. We strive to make Berlin accessible to everyone, all we ask you to bring is a healthy curiosity. If you have any special requests, don’t hesitate to ask.
Of course this depends on the time of the year – a hat and gloves in the winter, sunglasses in the summer. Please do check the weather before your trip, summers in Berlin can be rather hot (suntan lotion is a must) and the winters can be cold (don’t forget a coat). We always try to make sure our guests stay hydrated on tours, whether that’s coffee or tea, but a bottle of water is always a worthy travel companion.
We cater for guests of all ages and can tailor all our tours accordingly.
That depends on what sort of animal we are talking about. Dogs seem to love the fresh air and walking. Cats have a habit of wandering off on their own. Some of our guides are deathly afraid of snakes.
Our guides and drivers will always work hard for you and tipping is a great way of them receiving immediate feedback. Gratuities are completely discretionary but always gratefully received.
All of our guides are Berlin residents and have lived in the city for years, they are all well versed in letting their stomach lead the way to some of the best spots in the city. When touring in Berlin, feel free to quiz our guides about everything. If you need advice on where to stay or things to see/do before or after your tours please do send us an email. We are more than happy to help