2 Days in Berlin – What You Need to See & Do in 48 Hours
Do you fancy an awesome weekend getaway? Why not spend 2 days in Berlin, the vibrant and bustling capital city that needs to be part of every Germany itinerary!
Of course, it’s impossible to visit all the interesting museums, historic sites, and awesome rooftop bars in such a short time. Nevertheless, even in 48 hours, you can see and do a lot while still having a fun time.
To help you with planning, I put together this 2-day itinerary that guarantees you the best two days in Berlin!
(This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a certain percentage of a sale if you purchase after clicking.)
The first day of this itinerary is all about visiting the most important and historical sites of Berlin. Head over to one of the most famous landmarks in Germany: The Brandenburg Gate.
Once a symbol of the division of Germany, this monument should now symbolize unity and peace.
If you want to enjoy the monument without all the tourist masses in front of it, I highly recommend you to go there early in the morning.
I arrived there at around 8:00 am and there was barely anyone around as you can see in the photos above.
For more information about the Brandenburg Gate and the “Pariser Platz” square, check out the official website of Visit Berlin.
Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
The next place to visit during your 2 days in Berlin is the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, also called the Holocaust Memorial.
This sad memorial to all the Jewish victims during WWII was finished in 2004 and is only a short 5-minute walk from the Brandenburg Gate.
It’s probably very different from all the other memorials you’ve seen before. Unlike the usual statues, this memorial is a 19,000 square-meter site with more than 2,700 concrete slabs.
They’re arranged in a grid pattern and it’s possible to walk among them.
When I was there, I saw people running around and playing hide and seek between the slabs.
In my opinion, this is not how you’re supposed to behave in a place like this. Keep in mind it’s a memorial of a very tragic happening so please be respectful.
After you spent some time at the memorial, make your way to the Reichstag Building.
This historic building houses the German parliament and is mostly known for its unique glass cupola which is right above the debating chamber.
It’s possible to visit this architectural masterpiece from the inside but only by prior registration. You can do the online registration on the Bundestag website.
Inside the dome, there are two large steel ramps formed as a double helix enabling people to walk up to the top of the cupola.
If you want to know more about the building’s history you can join a guided tour there as well.
After visiting the Reichstag building, it’s probably lunchtime already.
There are many places nearby where you can grab something to eat.
Tours you might find interesting:
Museum Island & Berlin Cathedral
To reach the next place, you can either walk along the famous boulevard “Unter den Linden” or take the metro.
Museum Island is the northern part of an island in the Spree and is 30 minutes by foot from the Reichstag building. Moreover, it’s also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
On Museum Island you can find five different world-renowned museums including the Pergamon Museum and the Old National Gallery. I recommend you check out at least one of them.
You can either buy tickets online in advance or directly at the museum entrance.
Besides the five museums, you can also find the Berlin Cathedral on Museum Island. This more than 100-year-old grand basilica is difficult to oversee.
Thanks to its colorful dome, it’s one of the most-seen landmarks in the German capital’s cityscape. It’s even possible to climb the dome which offers a breathtaking view of the city.
The wide green area in front of the cathedral is a popular spot among locals who love to chill and play there in summer.
Alexanderplatz & Hotel Park Inn
Leave Museum Island and head to Alexanderplatz, the city’s best-known square that you shouldn’t miss seeing during your 2 days in Berlin.
It’s the place where you can find the enormous television tower called Berlin Fernsehturm and the fascinating World Clock.
To get the best view of the television tower, I recommend you to visit the hotel Park Inn right at the square and take the elevator to the top of the hotel.
Not only is the view from up there simply breathtaking, but there’s also a bar where you can grab a drink and relax in sunbeds!
For dinner, you can visit one of the many restaurants in that area.
Rooftop Bar “Hotel De Rome” (optional)
To end a successful first day in the German city, grab a drink at Hotel De Rome – one of Berlin’s fanciest hotels.
Even though the prices are super high, the hotel has definitely one of the best rooftop bars offering a great view of the city. So lean back and enjoy a wonderful sunset above the roofs while sipping a delicious cocktail!
The second day is a bit more relaxed and less sightseeing in the inner part of the city. For the perfect start, you can go for a casual brunch at one of the many lovely cafés.
Brunch at “geh Veg” (optional)
One place I can highly recommend is the small and cozy breakfast café “geh Veg”. On the menu there’s 100% plant-based food, the staff is super friendly and all prices are inexpensive.
You can choose between breakfast bagels, smoothie bowls, porridge, avocado toast and more. In my opinion, it’s definitely one of the best vegan restaurants in Berlin.
It’s a bit outside the city center in the neighborhood called Berlin Moabit. We stayed at the Mercure Hotel MOA and we reached the café within 10 minutes of walking distance.
There are tons of other great cafés in Berlin if you prefer choosing one in the area you stay in.
Tours you might find interesting:
After an ample and satisfying brunch, it’s time to head to the first sightseeing stop of the day: Charlottenburg Palace.
This large palace complex was built in the 17th century and was once the home of the Prussian queen Sophie Charlotte of Hanover. Today, the many luxurious and wonderfully decorated rooms are open to visitors.
You can admire some last remains of the impressive crown jewels or have a look at fine porcelain in the Porcelain Cabinet.
The palace is surrounded by a lush and wide garden park covering 55 hectares. Therefore it’s the perfect place to take an extensive walk, have a picnic or take a short nap in the sun.
In the park, you can also find a temple-like mausoleum where royals such as Kaiser Wilhelm I and his wife are buried.
Kurfürstendamm & Kaufhaus des Westens
Leave Charlottenburg Palace and take the metro to Kurfürstendamm – one of the most famous avenues in the city. What Champs-Élysées is in Paris, is Kurfürstendamm in Berlin.
Besides all the renowned fashion designer shops you can find splendid houses, 5-star hotels and many high-class restaurants there.
If you fancy an expensive pair of designer sunglasses or the newest Louis Vuitton bag, Kurfürstendamm is your place to be.
Even if you’re not into shopping and prefer to do all the free things in Berlin instead, it’s interesting to see where the rich and famous hang around.
You should also plan a stop at Europe’s second-largest department store, the Kaufhaus des Westens (KaDeWe).
With a selling space of more than 60,000 square meters, it guarantees a once-in-a-lifetime shopping experience.
If you’ve done enough shopping, grab something to eat in one of the restaurants there. Don’t worry, there are enough affordable ones too.
Afterward, it’s time to move on to the next point on this itinerary for 2 days in Berlin: The East Side Gallery.
East Side Gallery
This open-air gallery was founded in 1990, shortly after the fall of the Berlin wall.
Ever since then it’s been admired and enjoyed by people coming from all over the world. With a length of more than 1,3000 meters, it’s the longest open-air gallery worldwide.
You’ve probably seen some of its wall paintings in photos already. Undoubtedly, one of the East Side Gallery’s most famous artworks is the mural “Fraternal Kiss” showing two men kissing during the Cold War.
There are countless other creative paintings to admire so take your time and walk along the wall to make sure you don’t miss the best ones!
Close to the East Side Gallery, you can find another historically important place called “Checkpoint Charlie”. It was the former crossing point between East Berlin and West Berlin and thus worth a short visit as well.
Rooftop Bar “G&T” Hotel ZOE (optional)
Is there a better way to end an amazing 2 days in Berlin than with another visit to a rooftop bar? I don’t think so.
This time, check out the G&T bar at Hotel ZOE.
It’s a bit smaller than the bar at the Hotel De Rome but stylish with a great view of the TV tower.
The name G&T means “Gin and Tonic” and it couldn’t be more fitting because there are over 10 different types of gin on their card.
If you’re not a fan of gin and tonic, you can choose between a variety of other drinks such as beer, wine, long drinks and more.
So cheers to an amazing and hopefully unforgettable trip!
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This is a great itinerary Alina! Berlin is on my bucket list for the next time I visit Germany. The Hotel de Rome rooftop bar looks so lovely and I love the street art there. 🙂
It’s a great city, you’ll love it! 🙂
What a great itinerary! I visited many of the sights when I was in Berlin a couple of years ago. But I missed out on the rooftop bar, I’ll save it for next time.
Thanks Maria! Berlin has some really cool rooftop bars 🙂
I LOVE Berlin! It’s one of my favorite cities I’ve visited. I think you’ve got some great recommendations here, especially if someone only has 2 days. The city has such a dark history, but I think that’s just one of the many reasons why it’s so beautiful now!
Yeah I had a really good time in the city too! And yes no doubt it has a dark past but that’s why it’s also super interesting to visit!
I love Berlin and agree with your ideas for 2 days there! I haven’t been to a rooftop bar there though – so will definitely hit up Hotel Rome next time I’m there!
It’s a really cool one!
A great guide to Berlin covering all the highlights 🙂 Thanks for the plant-based tip!
Thanks, happy you like it! 🙂
I love rooftop bars so I’m glad you include a couple – what’s better than drinks + amazing views?! I also appreciate that this itinerary includes so much history – definitely saving for future reference.
Thanks, happy you like it! ☺️
What a great guide with so much to do in 2 days! The highlights of my trip to Berlin were the East Side Gallery and the gorgeous cathedral!
Thanks Tiana! I loved the East Side Gallery too 🙂
Great post!! I went to Berlin for 3 days and visited almost all the places you have 🙂 To be honest, Berlin really impressed me. My expectations weren’t very high!
Yes Berlin is an awesome city!
So much history in Berlin! I need to go there and see the land of my ancestors!
Oh yes definitely!
Berlin is one of my favorite cities. There is an endless amount of things to do there! My favorite thing to do is Charlottenburg Palace. So gorgeous inside! Thank you for the tips — if I go back ill keep this in mind!
Oh yes I loved the palace so much! And its garden was beautiful 🙂
You have convinced me to go back to Berlin – your photos are stunning! I went back in 2007 but I have heard it has changed a lot since then
Happy to hear that! It’s such a cool city 🙂
Great post! I´m often in Berlin, as it is a good hour away with the train and I have yet not seen it all! Thanks for sharing this, I´bookmarking it for my next visit x
Thanks Katja! Berlin has so much to offer 🙂
Berlin is such an interesting place and at times, a very sad place when you learn of some of things that occurred there. Thanks for the post it was very enjoyable.
Yes that’s true! It’s very rich in sad history.
This is a great guide! I went to berlin once years ago but would love to go back and do more, especially that rooftop bar!
I looove the rooftop bars so much!
Great itinerary! All the important highlight are here, plus some cool rooftop bars for good measure. Pinned it for my next time in Berlin!
Thanks so much Cristina 🙂
love the vegan tip, will be visiting that restaurant when I visit berlin
Happy to hear that!
Great, thorough post! I always found Berlin a little moody until I really started thinking about the history of the place. It’s a great city with a lot of importance!
Yes it has a lot of important but sad history!
Great overview of Berlin. I enjoyed the photos of the street art. Also I’d agree that it’s important to respect places like the Holocaust Memorial. I can’t imagine why people would be so shallow to play hide and seek there.
Yeah me neither ?
Omg this guide brought back the sweetest memories from my time in Berlin! I had truly forgotten how cool this city is!
Happy to hear that! Berlin is indeed really cool ☺️
Such a great read, Alina! I was in Berlin a few years ago but would definitely love to come back to see more of it ? Bookmarking this post for when that happens!
Thanks so much Charu ☺️