Berlin is a city made for the saddle. Beautiful vintage racing bicycles and elegant city cruisers line the streets and its bicycle culture is one of its crowning features. Thanks to more than 900 kilometers (560 miles) of cycle paths along broad avenues, a wealth of green spaces and its general flatness, bicyclists get to see a different side of the capital when exploring it on two wheels.
With many winding roads to get lost in, lush green forests, a network of waterways and an iconic Soviet Wall Memorial to discover, Treptower is a paradise for any cyclist. The large area also connects to the sublime Plänterwald forests. Spend the day weaving in and out of its many shaded paths, and circle the perimeter of the mysterious abandoned amusement park at Spreepark.
Tempelhof is a special place where you can still find open skies and a humbling sense of vastness in a usually dense, crowded city. This historical site was once an airport used by the people of West Berlin and their allies during the Cold War period. Now, its abandoned landing strips provide smooth terrain for cyclists and a unique experience for all visitors. Feel the wind in your hair as you glide past a community garden, picnickers, music-makers, joggers and skate boarders – Tempelhof has enough space for everybody.
Autumn, spring and summer in Berlin are optimum times to get cruising as the city is transformed into beautiful, earthy colors and movie-like scenes by the canals. The forests of Grunewald provide a scenic round trip you can do with your bicycle. First, you’ll need to get to the S-Bahnhof Grunewald, and from there follow the signs that lead to your cycling adventure. Spend the day in the cool forests and have a dip in the Teufelssee. Look out for the historical landmark of the Grunewaldturm and take in the beautiful view from the top of the monument’s tower.
The city of Potsdam is around 30 kilometers (18 miles) away from Berlin, and offers riders a perfect day trip by bicycle. On the way you’ll pass by the beautiful lake Wannsee and the Sanssouci Park with views of the grand rococo palace. Potsdam has many bodies of water to cycle around. Enjoy a picnic at the magical Belvedere open-air castle, nestled in nature on the Pfingstberg before cycling back to Berlin.
A visit to Berlin would not be complete without an exploration into the city’s not so distant and divided history. It’s wild to think that less than 30 years ago a gigantic wall ran through the city, and one of the best ways to wrap your head around the magnitude of this lesson in time, is to cruise its length by bicycle. The section of the East Side Gallery, with its mural artwork, is particularly popular. When the wall stood, it spanned 140 kilometers (87 miles) in length, but choose the six kilometer (three-and-a-half mile) stretch that starts at the open-air East Side Gallery, passing through Bernauer Strasse via Potsdamer Platz. You’ll discover many memorials, remnants of the wall and the old border watchtowers on your journey.