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A 5-day itinerary to Berlin
18 Oct. 2023
18 Oct. 2023
A capital city at the heart of a tumultuous history, Berlin has, over the years, carefully preserved its heritage. Checkpoint Charlie, Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag Building… these are but a few examples of how the city has not forgotten its dark years but owns up to them. At the same time, Berlin has stepped up its vitality, carving for itself a happy and vibrant way of life. Today, the city is a cultural melting pot synonymous with hip living and creative experimentation. It attracts artists and creators the world over, and stands out for its bustling days and nights.
We are delighted to bring you a 5-day itinerary to discover Berlin, and the best hotel to stay in the heart of the city, Hotel de Rome. The hotel enjoys a privileged location on the historic Bebelplatz, which is an iconic sight of Berlin.
In the Mitte district of Berlin, Gendarmenmarkt is one of Berlin’s most beautiful squares. At its center stands a statue of the famous poet Frederick Schiller, but its appeal lies in the impressive architectural ensemble that surrounds it: the German cathedral, the French cathedral and the Konzerthaus. The square was severely damaged during the Second World War, and has since been restored adopting a new, distinctive look mixing different architectural styles.
Address: Gendarmenmarkt 10117 Berlin.
Just a seven-minute walk away and sitting directly in front of Hotel de Rome, Bebelplatz is another square that impresses with its architecture and history. It’s framed by the State Opera House, Humboldt University and the St. Hedwig’s Cathedral. It was also the tragic site of the Nazi auto-da-fé on May 10, 1933, when more than 20,000 books from the university library, deemed not to correspond to the “German spirit”, were burnt. In the center of the square, don’t miss the small square window set in cobblestones; It offers a view of an underground room surrounded by empty libraries, symbolizing the intellectual and cultural loss that happened that day.
Address: Unter den Linden 10117 Berlin.
Founded in 2002, the König Galerie moved into the former St. Agnes Church, a Brutalist masterpiece from the 1960s, in 2015. This is a unique art space, staging interdisciplinary and conceptual exhibitions from painting and sculpture to photography, video and sound, and with works by over 40 international artists.
Address: Alexandrinenstraße 118-121, 10969 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 11am to 6pm.
A former working-class suburb, the Kreuzberg district is historically very left-wing and was home to many immigrants, particularly Turks. Since the fall of the Berlin Wall, it has become the cradle of Berlin’s punk, alternative and student scene. To get the full flavour of this district, Lartisien recommends lunch in one of the many Turkish restaurants in the area.
After lunch, we recommend a stroll around the Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain districts, once separated by the Berlin Wall. Urban art abounds, and Oberbaumbrücke, a medieval-looking bridge spanning the Spree, is a symbol of Berlin’s reunification.
On the banks of the Spree, in the Friedrichshain district, the East Side Gallery is an open-air space celebrating the fall of the Berlin Wall. It spans the longest continuous section of the Wall still in existence, and features works by 118 artists from 21 different countries. Among the famous frescoes is Dmitri Vrubel’s My God, Help Me to Survive This Deadly Love, depicting the fraternal kiss between Brezhnev and Honecker.
Address: Mühlenstraße 3-100, 10243 Berlin.
We recommend 2 restaurants for dinner in Kreuzberg.
At Horváth, antique woodwork blends with a modern design, with a mural signed by German pop artist Jim Avignon, creating a chic atmosphere in which to experience chef Sebastian Frank’s creative Austrian cuisine.
Address: Paul-Lincke-Ufer 44a, 10999 Berlin.
Opening hours: Wednesday to Saturday – 6.30pm to 8.30pm.
Rutz-Zollhaus in a historic building on the banks of the Landwehrkanal. The restaurant offers an idyllic setting for lunch al fresco, along with a dining room. On the menu, expect classic German dishes reimagined, and a selection of charcuterie to enjoy as appetizers or a side dish!
Address: Carl-Herz-Ufer 30, 10961 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 6pm to 11pm.
Still in Kreuzberg, the Jewish Museum is one of Europe’s largest museums, famous for its bold, multi-styled architecture. Seen from above, it has the shape of a zig-zag line, and has become known as the blitz, which in German means lightning. The building was imagined by architect Daniel Libeskind, to reflect on the complexities of German-Jewish history. Highlights include the Holocaust Tower, a building plunged into darkness, and the Garden of Exile, where 49 inclined steles symbolize the fate of Jews in exile.
Address: Lindenstraße 9-14, 10969 Berlin.
Opening hours: Daily – 10am to 7pm.
A 10-minute walk away, you can also discover Checkpoint Charlie, the most important crossing and demarcation point between East and West Berlin until the fall of the Wall in 1989.
Address: Friedrichstraße 43-45, 10117 Berlin.
In this restaurant, named after his grandmother, Israeli chef Assaf Granit offers a cuisine that blends his family recipes from Jerusalem with the contemporary spirit of Berlin. The dining room features a harmonious blend of industrial style, modern design and decorative touches reminiscent of his origins. The open kitchen, tucked behind the counter, adds to the restaurant’s cozy atmosphere.
Address: Stresemannstraße 99, 10963 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 11.30am to 2.30pm / 6pm to 11pm. Monday and Sunday – 6pm to 11pm.
A 20-minute walk from the restaurant, find the Holocaust Memorial, with its impressive architecture, and 2,710 columns arranged in a labyrinthine. In the basement, a documentation center contains information relating to the Holocaust and Nazi camps, as well as biographies of the victims of the Jewish genocide.
Address: Cora-Berliner-Straße 1, 10117 Berlin.
Opening hours: 24 hours a day.
Just behind the Memorial is Unter den Linden, one of Berlin’s most famous avenues. The Brandenburg Gate, whose architecture was inspired by the entrance to the Acropolis in Athens, is the starting point for a beautiful stroll to Alexanderplatz, dotted with monuments. On the square, admire the 368-metre-high Berlin Television Tower and enjoy panoramic views from its 203-metre-high observation point.
The Philharmonie Berlin is famous for its exceptional architecture by Hans Scharoun. Its large symphony concert hall is pentagonal in shape, with the stage at the center of the asymmetrically arranged tiers. This unique design guarantees excellent acoustics, making the hall one of the most renowned in the world. Attending a concert here is an unforgettable experience!
Address: Herbert-von-Karajan-Straße 1, 10785 Berlin.
A 10-minute drive from Philharmonie Berlin is chef Tim Raue’s eponymous restaurant where he invites guests to discover European cuisine with Asian influences. The menu offers two options featuring his signature dishes such as langoustine with wasabi and Peking duck. The interior is warm and inviting, with wooden banquettes around marble tables, and bottles, flasks and stemware on display.
Address: Rudi-Dutschke-Straße 26, 10969 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 6.30pm to midnight. Friday and Saturday – noon to 3pm.
In west Berlin, Charlottenburg is home to the capital’s largest palace, once the summer residence of Queen Sophie-Charlotte of Prussia. The palace is an outstanding example of German Baroque architecture, with its elegant facade, formal gardens and richly decorated rooms housing priceless works of art, tapestries and period porcelain. Our recommendation? Take the picturesque 20-minute bike ride along the river to reach the castle from Berlin. It allows for an appreciation of the beauty of the surrounding area.
A 15-minute drive from the castle is the Diekmann restaurant, an absolute treat for seafood lovers. In a warm dining room with contrasting vintage and modern furnishings, you can enjoy delicious oysters from Brittany, caviar and shrimps, as well as other French and German specialties.
Address: Meinekestraße 7, 10719 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – noon to 11pm.
Depending on your interests, we recommend an afternoon at the Berlin Zoo or the Gemäldegalerie.
Families will appreciate the zoo, renowned for housing the world’s greatest diversity of species, including pandas, wolves and hippos, as well as a large aquarium. Art lovers will be captivated by the Gemäldegalerie and its European masterpieces from the Middle Ages and the early modernist period. Expect works by Rubens, Botticelli and Albrecht Dürer, among others.
Art lovers will be captivated by the Gemäldegalerie and its European masterpieces from the Middle Ages and the early modernist period. Expect works by Rubens, Botticelli and Albrecht Dürer, among others.
Address: Hardenbergpl. 8, 10787 Berlin.
Opening hours: Daily – 9am to 6.30pm.
Address: Matthäikirchplatz, 10785 Berlin.
Opening hours: Daily – 10am to 6pm.
On the 8th floor of the historic Loeser & Wolff building, the Michelin-starred Golvet restaurant captivates with its cosmopolitan ambience and exceptional view of the capital. Dark tones, a lounge decor and subdued lighting make this restaurant a culinary and urban spectacle, with chef Jonas Zörner offering a creative cuisine, accompanied by a curated wine list.
Address: Potsdamer Str. 58, 10785 Berlin.
Opening hours: Wednesday to Saturday – 6.45pm to 10.45pm.
An hour’s drive from Berlin, Potsdam was once the residence of Prussian kings.
On the way to Potsdam, we recommend a stop at Villa de Wannsee, site of the Nazi conference on January 20, 1942, and where the Holocaust was planned. Since 1992, the villa has housed a memorial museum that tells the story of the Wannsee Conference, as well as that of the Holocaust in general. After the tour, make a trip to Glienicker Bridge: site of a famous spy exchange at the height of the Cold War, immortalized in Tom Hanks’ film, Greyhound.
Villa de Wannsee:
Address: Am Großen Wannsee 56-58, 14109 Berlin.
Opening hours: Daily – 10am to 6pm.
Sanssouci Palace is Potsdam’s most striking landmark. This rococo masterpiece, built in the 18th century under the aegis of King Frederick the Great, boasts a majestic façade and richly decorated interiors. In the Galerie des Tableaux, you can admire works by Frederick the Great himself. The extensive gardens, dotted with fountains, statues and pavilions, also offer a peaceful escape from the world.
Address: Maulbeerallee, 14469 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Daily except Monday – 9am to 5.30pm.
For lunch, head to Zum Fliegenden Holländer, located in the Dutch Quarter, for delicious specialties such as maatjes tartar and Dutch cheese salad. You can sit out on the terrace to enjoy the fine weather, or in the dining room, whose Berliner-Brandenburg atmosphere is enhanced by the antique bar and old piano.
Address: Benkertstraße 5, 14467 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Daily – noon to 10pm.
A stroll through the Dutch Quarter is also a must to admire its historic buildings and the Church of St. Nicholas on the market square. But first, stop at La Maison du Chocolat!
Address: Benkertstraße 20, 14467 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday – 10am to 7pm.
There are also 2 museums to discover in the area.
Behind the facades of a historic palace, the Barberini Museum houses Impressionist masterpieces by Monet, Renoir and Signac, among others.
Address: Humboldtstraße 5-6, 14467 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Daily – 10am to 7pm.
The Das Minsk museum, on the other hand, is dedicated to the art of the German Democratic Republic between the post-war years and the fall of the Wall.
Address: Benkertstraße 20, 14467 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Daily – 10am to 7pm.
For dinner in Potsdam, we recommend 2 establishments.
Kochzimmer is an address with an elegant interior of silver-gray walls, sparkling chandeliers and chairs in a refined red design. Chef David Schubert offers what he calls a “new Prussian cuisine”, featuring the best of Brandenburg’s produce on two menus.
Address: Am Neuen Markt 10, 14467 Potsdam.
Opening hours: Wednesday to Saturday – 6pm to 11.30pm.
Villa Kellerman, on the other hand, boasts a sublime terrace overlooking a lake. The cuisine is inspired by German tradition but comes with a contemporary twist, in set menus and à la carte options.
Address: Mangerstraße 34, 14467 Potsdam
Opening hours: Wednesday to Sunday – 6pm to 11pm.
Saturday and Sunday – noon to 3 pm.
Berlin Cathedral, or Berliner Dom in German, is the capital’s most iconic religious building. Located on Museum Island, this neo-Renaissance and neo-Baroque architectural masterpiece rises proudly above River Spree with its large central dome. Inside, visitors can admire the altar by Prussian architect Stüler, the marble baptismal font by sculptor Christian Daniel Rauch and the Descent of the Holy Spirit, a painting by Carl Begas. Climbing up the dome also offers a panoramic view over Berlin.
Address: Am Lustgarten, 10178 Berlin.
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday – 10am to 5pm.
Sunday – noon to 5pm.
Museum Island, on River Spree, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to a number of museums. The most famous is the Pergamon Museum, known for its collection of ancient art, including the spectacular Ishtar Gate of Babylon and the Pergamon Altar. Also worth a visit, the Neues Museum, known for its valuable collection of Egyptian artifacts, including the statue of Nefertiti and the bust of Thutmosis III, and for its classical antiquities and prehistoric exhibitions.
Address: Bodestraße 1-3, 10178 Berlin.
Opening hours for both museums: Tuesday to Sunday – 10am to 6pm (closes at 8pm on Thursday).
Less than a 5-minute drive away, Pots is a casual yet elegant setting for lunch: a room marked by a chic decor and an open kitchen nestled behind a marble and copper counter. On the lunch menu, discover a selection of German starters and dishes revisited by chef Dieter Müller.
Address: Potsdamer Platz 3, 10785 Berlin.
Opening hours: Monday to Friday – noon to 2.30pm.
Tuesday to Saturday – 6pm to 10pm.
Kurfürstendamm is one of Berlin’s most famous avenues, known for its luxury boutiques and department stores. In particular, it is home to KaDeWe, one of Europe’s largest department stores after Galeries Lafayette in Paris and Harrods in London. It is a symbol of luxury and shopping in the German capital, designed over 60,000 m2 and 8 floors.
Address: Tauentzienstraße 21-24, 10789 Berlin.
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday – 10am to 8pm.
An evening at one of the capital’s two finest opera houses is the perfect culmination to a stay in Berlin. Staatsoper Unter den Linden, nestled in a classic Baroque building in the heart of the city, offers traditional opera and ballet productions. By contrast, the Deutsche Oper Berlin, housed in a modern building, offers a different experience, with a diverse range of shows, from classical opera to contemporary creations.
Staatsoper Unter den Linden
Address: Unter den Linden 7, 10117 Berlin.
Deutsche Oper Berlin
Address: Bismarckstraße 35, 10627 Berlin.
For your last dinner in Berlin, we recommend Cordo. The setting is simple, uncluttered and warm, with natural wood tables and a variety of decorative elements creating an inviting atmosphere. In summer, the small inner courtyard provides a relaxed setting for alfresco dining. The restaurant is overseen by chef Yannic Stockhausen, offering a menu entitled “Harbour Tour,” inspired by his native Hamburg.
Address: Große Hamburger Str. 32, 10115 Berlin.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday – 6.30pm to midnight.
On the historic Bebelplatz, Hotel de Rome sits in the heart of Berlin, close to sights such as the Gendarmenmarkt, Brandenburg Gate, Museum Island, Berliner Dom and the Television Tower. It is the ideal base from which to explore the German capital.
Hotel de Rome – a Rocco Forte property – also welcomes travelers in a magnificent building dating all the way to 1889, then the headquarters of the famous Dresdner Bank until 1945. This is one of the few hotels in the capital to be housed in an original building, partially destroyed during the Second World War and restored in keeping with its origins.
Then, of course, behind the neoclassical façade, the hotel’s spaces are a blend of modernity and the building’s rich heritage. This is something most obvious in the hotel’s 145 rooms and suites, all featuring an original style combining antique elements, contemporary furnishings and a variety of decorative objects.
Elsewhere, the hotel’s 4 historic suites feature a mix of oak and mahogany, paneled walls, wooden floors, built-in wardrobes and coffered ceilings reminiscent of the history of the rooms that were once offices and large meeting rooms.
Our favorite is the Royal Bebel Suite. It is, without a doubt, the most prestigious. It is designed in the style of a sumptuous Berlin apartment, with chic furnishings by Julian Chichester and La Fibule, sublime fabrics by Le Lièvre, lighting by Porta Romana, and abstract artworks adorning the walls. Its balcony offers a view of Bebelplatz, while its large marble bathroom, decorated with mosaics, lets in plenty of natural light.
On the culinary front, the hotel is home to Chiaro, with a sophisticated atmosphere and a decor of dark hues, beautiful furniture and lighting. The menu is a selection of authentic Italian dishes with an innovative edge.
Bar Chiaro is a place where guests enjoy crafted cocktails imagined with herbs, spices, dried fruits and vegetables. The atmosphere is brilliant, unfolding in a vibrant and very modern lounge.
During the summer months, the magnificent rooftop terrace is the ideal place to relax. It spans 120 m2 and offers an exceptional view of Berlin’s historic center, Bebelplatz and the Berliner Dom. Come evening time, guests can enjoy a glass of champagne or a cocktail to colors of the sun setting over the capital’s rooftops and music by Berlin’s best DJs. The evening can be extended on the rooftop terrace with a menu of seasonal dishes and Italian specialties.
In winter, the elegant Opera Court becomes the hub of the hotel. It’s where guests can enjoy a typically English afternoon tea in a warm atmosphere enhanced by the sound of the piano. The menu features over 30 Ronnefeldt teas and delicacies, with sandwiches, petits-fours, scones and pastries.
Another highlight of the hotel is its spa, housed in the former vault of the Dresdner Bank. It combines the history of the building with a more contemporary decor, including a gym (available 24/7 for guests), a 20m indoor pool (reopening December 2023), 6 treatment rooms, a relaxation room, a steam room and a sauna.
Address: Behrenstraße 37, 10117 Berlin.
Transfer: 33 minutes from Berlin Brandenburg Airport.
Opening period: All year round.
At Lartisien, we tailor your trip to your aspirations and select each hotel in our collection for its excellence, guaranteeing an exceptional trip. Whether you’d like to book a stay at the Hotel de Rome , or have us design a Berlin itinerary to suit your interests, please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.
When is the best time to visit Berlin?
Berlin can be visited all year. Summer (from June to August) is the high season, with pleasant temperatures and many outdoor events. Spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) offer milder weather conditions, ideal for exploring the city on foot. Winter (December to February) is the coldest season, but a magical time as the city welcomes Christmas markets.
What’s the best area to stay in Berlin?
In the heart of the city, the Mitte district offers easy access to the main attractions and activities. It’s the perfect base for a short stay in Berlin.
What documents do I need to travel to Berlin?
For European travelers, a valid identity card or passport is enough since Germany is part of the Schengen area. For travelers coming from outside of the European Union, we recommend checking the specific requirements for your country of origin.