Although you may want to revisit some of the sites that you saw first time round, there is plenty more to see in Berlin for a second, third or even fourth trip. In fact if you can say that you have "done" Berlin, you probably haven't tried hard enough. It is of course impossible to cover everything but here are a few ideas and suggestions that might be of interest to the returning or more adventurous first time visitor. Of course if you have exhausted all of these suggestions, feel free to contact our sales team on 020 8518 1010 and they will put you in touch with our resident Berlin expert!
You may not be surprised to learn that a city with such a chequered past has some secrets hidden beneath the surface – and we mean literally, not metaphorically here. Assuming you are not claustrophobic, you can take a tour of the many escape tunnels that were dug during the period after the construction of the Berlin Wall as well as some of the underground construction for Hitler's planned mega-city of "Germania". There are various tours that can be booked, however, for more information on the options we suggest taking a look at the Berliner Unterwelten website (this is the society that deals with underground Berlin). You can visit them here:http://berliner-unterwelten.de/home.1.1.html
Out to the western side of Berlin is the city of Potsdam which was the former residence of the Prussian kings and subsequently the German Kaiser. It is a very picturesque city surrounded by lakes but one of the the main reasons that people go to Potsdam is to visit Sanssouci Palace, the former residence of Frederick the Great and to take a stroll in its stunning gardens (entrance to the palace costs €8). Another option on a sunny day is to visit Pfaueninsel (peacock island) which is a nature reserve and part of the Potsdam and Berlin UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many people choose Pfaueninsel as a means of relaxation from the hustle and bustle of the city and it is also an excellent spot for a picnic. To get to Potsdam, take the S-Bahn (lines S1 or S7).
This is very much a well-kept Berlin secret and Berliners might not thank us for sharing! Wannsee is the westernmost district of Berlin and has two lakes – the Grosser and Kleiner Wannsee (the big and small Wannsee). On warm summer days (of which there are plenty in Berlin!), Berliners and tourists in the know flock to Wannsee to cool off and enjoy the picturesque surroundings. As well as the two lakes, there is an open air lido at Strandbad Wannsee which has one of the longest inland beaches in Europe. As you might expect from the Germans, there is also a nudist area for those that wish to partake. To get to Wannsee, you can take the S-Bahn (lines S1 or S7) to the stop Berlin-Wannsee.
Berlin is an incredibly flat city and despite its size, it is incredibly easy to cover large distances by bike. As you might also imagine, it is very much a bike friendly city. In fact bikes have the right of way in most cases and the extensive cycle lane network puts the UK to shame. Of course given that cycling is such an accepted mode of transport in the city, as you might imagine, hiring a bike is both straightforward and affordable. Most hotels will be able to point you in the direction of your nearest rental location. As well as being healthy and environmentally friendly, it allows you to get closer to the sites as well as being in control of your own schedule. A word of caution however: in a place where cycling is so commonplace, bike theft is also a concern - lock up!