Boat Tours of Berlin

Take Berlin by boat and cruise around the city's top sites on the river Spree

Berlin river cruise boat.jpg
••• Express cruise pick-up. Erin Porter

Even with Berlin’s wonderful transportation options, the city can still be a monster to traverse. Walking is inevitable no matter your mode of transport, but a jaunt between attractions can rack up quite the miles (or kilometers if you're being European about it).

Luckily, there is an easier way than by foot, by auto or by BVG that is ideal for the summer. Berlin city cruises are a popular way to check out some of the city's top sites from a new perspective.

There are many different operators on the rivers and canals of the city with cruise times and options ranging from a speedy hour-long ride through the city's top sites to whole day excursions with elegant meals and cocktails.

Berlin City Tours - Express Cruise

The express cruise around Museuminsel and Mitte proved to be the perfect cure for my parent's tired feet on a recent visit to the city. Inexpensive, easy to hop on and at just an hour ride time - this is the best way to check out the must-sees in Berlin. Information is provided in German and English via speakers with an additional audio guide available on board for €3 per person in English, French, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Danish and Swedish. Food and drink is available for purchase on-board.

  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Departure times: 10:00, 11:30, 13:00, 14:30 and 16:00 (check website for current times)
  • Departure point: Moltkebrucke by the Hauptbahnhof train station

Reederei BWSG

This cruise offers a ride on the Spree between the Haus der Kulturen der Welt and the Mühlendammschleuse locks or an extended East Side Tour.

This company also offers the chance to rent boats and be your own captain.

  • Website:
  • Tickets: €10,50; East Side tour €21
  • Duration: 1 hour; East Side tours 2 1/2 hours
  • Departure times: Every 30minutes to an hour from 10:45 to 19:45; East Side tour once daily
  • Departure point: Alte Börse - Burgstraße 27, 10178 Berlin-Mitte (close to Hackescher Markt)

Berlin City Tours - Evening Cruise

The area around Museuminsel can grow quiet at night, giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy the city's grandiose architecture and history. Take in the night with unlimited access to wine, beer, soft and hot drinks. Information is given in German via speakers with audio guides are available on board for €3 per person in English, French, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Danish and Swedish.

Tips for Cruises in Berlin

  • Even on warm days, the breeze on the river can be quite cool so be sure to bring a jacket. Tours are rain or shine, but there is usually ample seating inside or under cover.
  • Reservations aren't required for many of these tours, but they may sell-out during the busy summer season or around holidays. Try to reserve online or call for openings.
  • Most cruises offer group discounts and private tours. Inquire directly for options.
  • Berlin welcome card offers free of discounted boat tours. 
  • More cruise options can be found on visitBerlin's website.