Berlin may not be the most picturesque city in Europe, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t some great photo opportunities. In this article, I’ll be sharing our top 10 favourite spots for photography in Berlin.
There may be no quaint cobbled streets like Prague or fairy tale castles like Budapest, but Berlin is still an extraordinary city. It’s one of our favourite cities in Europe in fact, and one we will return to time and time again.
A large part of Berlin’s charm is its rough and readiness. It’s artsy, it’s urban, and it’s one of the coolest cities in the world.
While you don’t see the same Berlin Instagram spots popping up time and time again like other European cities, that doesn’t mean there isn’t any. It just means you might have to get a little more creative to make your shots Instagram-worthy.
We’ve done the leg work with a bit of help from our Insta-Buddies, so you can go out and shoot some epic photography in Berlin.
10 Awesome Locations for Photography in Berlin
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1. Brandenburg Gate
Brandenburg Gate is the most recognisable landmark in the city, so it makes sense to kick off our Photography spots in Berlin here.
Historically, the gate symbolised Berlin’s Cold War division into East and West. Today it stands as a national symbol of peace and unity.
If you’re staying in the Mitte area, it’s likely the gate will be within walking distance from your hotel. If not, it’s easy to reach by public transport.
Naturally, the gate gets very busy throughout the day, which is why we recommend visiting early. We were there just after sunrise, and it was incredibly peaceful.
Best time to shoot: To snap some shots before the crowds arrive, we recommend arriving as early as possible. We took the photo below at sunrise.
Entrance Fee: Free
2. East Side Gallery
Take the bus or train to Warschauer Strasse, it is the perfect starting point for your walk alongside the East Side Gallery. What once served as a divide between East & West Berlin, is now one of the most extensive open-air galleries in the world.
At 1.3 kilometres, it is the longest continuous section of the wall still in existence. To see the wall transformed into an outlet of artistic expression is truly remarkable.
A lot of the artwork along the wall has become globally famous, with murals depicting incredibly powerful and inspiring messages. In my opinion, many of them could be considered instagrammable, but the most famous is undoubtedly the man on man smooch below.
Best time to shoot – To snap some shots before the crowds arrive, we recommend arriving before 9am.
Entrance Fee: Free
3. Berlin Cathedral – Inside & Outside
Another iconic spot for Photography in Berlin is the Berlin Cathedral. The striking neoclassical architecture and its iconic dome make it one of the most significant landmarks in the city.
Located on Museum Island, the Cathedral is an essential addition to any Berlin itinerary. You can admire the beautiful structure from the outside as we did, or you can pay €7 to explore inside as well.
Inside the cathedral is a museum showcasing drawings, designs and structures depicting the history of the Cathedral. You can also climb the 270 steps into the dome, where you’ll find stunning panoramic views.
Best time to shoot – For a striking sky and golden light, we recommend arriving for sunrise or sunset.
Entrance Fee: Free or €7 to enter inside
4. Reichstag Dome
Our fourth Instagram spot of Berlin is the home of Germany’s parliament. Berlin has its fair share of historical architecture, and the Reichstag is one of the most significant buildings in the city.
The futuristic dome within the Reichstag has been designed to reflect light through the building. Play with symmetries and light as well as enjoy views of the surrounding area.
To go inside the Reichstag, you must first complete the online registration form ahead of your visit. You can take a quick look around by yourself, or take part in a detailed tour. Both are possible and free of charge, but only with an advanced booking.
We suggest booking at least two weeks in advance as we tried to book when we arrived in the city, and the slots were already fully booked.
- Best time to shoot – To snap some shots before the crowds arrive, we recommend arriving at 8am when they open.
- Entrance Fee: Free
- Location on Google Maps
5. Photoautomat Booth
Our next recommendation is one of the more unique spots for photography in Berlin. These retro photo booths are dotted all over the city and make for some fun photo opportunities.
You honestly won’t need to hunt very far to find one. They are in all the neighbourhoods, often the trendiest areas and blend seamlessly in with their surroundings.
The one you can see below was near the East Side Gallery. You can check out this article on the best photo automats in Berlin to help locate the others. There’s also a cool shot to be had at night when they are lit up.
Best time to shoot – Anytime. At night they are illuminated.
Entrance Fee: Free or €2 to use
6. Tempelhof Runway
One of our favourite Instagram spots in Berlin is the runway at Tempelhof Airport. I mean how often do you get the chance of taking a photo on an actual runway?
The former airport has a distinctively cool vibe and is probably one of our favourite spots to hang out in Berlin. I love that they’ve kept the old airport building and runways still in tack.
Don’t you agree it makes for an awesome photo opportunity? But don’t worry, we were in no danger taking the photo. We photoshopped in the plane for effect.
Best time to shoot – Sunset is a lovely time to be here when the golden light shimmers across the 950 acres of land. It is also a quieter time too.
Entrance Fee: Free
7. Viktoria Park
Located in the hipster district of Kreuzberg, Viktoria Park is one of the most picturesque parks for photography in Berlin. Not only ideal for taking photos but a pleasant spot to take a stroll and escape the bustle of the city.
The great thing about Berlin’s open spaces is that while they change with the seasons, they are beautiful all year round. Viktoria Park is no different; however, arguably the best time to visit is in the Summer when the stunning artificial waterfall is active.
That said, it’s still worth visiting at any point during the year. Another highlight is the awesome view of the city you get at the top of the hill.
Best time to shoot – Morning or Afternoon during golden hour. During the Summer if you want to shoot the waterfall.
Entrance Fee: Free
8. Nature Park Schöneberger Südgelände
Berlin is an urban explorers mecca, boasting a wealth of eerie abandoned buildings, theme parks, and urban spaces. One of our favourites is Nature Park Schöneberger Südgelände – a deserted railway yard set on the outskirts of the city.
Fifty years ago, the park was nothing but an industrial junkyard; however, over the past five decades, it has flourished into a rich jungle forest. Derelict remains of buildings, tunnels, and tracks lay buried beneath the forest. There is even an abandoned train that’s been left there!
This spot is a playground for instagrammers and photographers so you won’t want to miss it. I highly recommend checking out Abandoned Berlin for other cool abandoned spots around the city.
Best time to shoot – Morning or late afternoon for the best lighting.
Entrance Fee: €1
9. Berlin Christmas Markets
If you find yourself in Berlin over the festive period, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to Instagram locations. Nobody does Christmas markets like the Germans, and Berlin is utterly magical at this time of year.
There are Christmas markets scattered all over the city, and each of them is worthy of a spot on your Instagram feed.
The photo below was taken at the famous Gendarmenmarkt, but other notable Christmas markets in Berlin include Charlottenberg Palace and Altstadt Spandau.
10. Street Photography in Berlin
Our final Instagram spot in Berlin is simple enough to find because it’s pretty much everywhere. With its quirky cafes, street art, tramlines, and urban vibes, street photography in Berlin can be a hell of a lot of fun. Just be sure to take note of our responsible photography section below, and you’re good to go.
Responsible Photography in Berlin
Often when you travel, you see things that completely blow your mind, It’s natural to want to take photos. However, please keep in mind the following basic rules of street photography:
- Respect historical and memorial sights
- Don’t climb on sacred buildings or structures
- Take care of your safety at all times
- Do it for the ‘gram does not apply if it seems unsafe in any way
- Be friendly – A smile goes a long way
- Respect the privacy of your subjects
- If somebody is irritated by the camera, put it away.
- If you’re asked to delete an image, do so.
- Check out our guide on responsible travel
The Best Hotels for Photography in Berlin
Unsurprisingly, there is no shortage of accommodation options in Berlin. You can click the location link below to search for hundreds of hotels, hostels, and guesthouses in the area.
For the purpose of this article, however, I thought I should suggest some of the more quirky places to stay in Berlin. Hotels that I believe reflect the edgy character of the city and deserve a spot on your Instagram feed.
This quirky hotel is located in Berlin’s trendy Kreuzkölln district. Hüttenpalast offers a unique range of accommodation including Retro-style caravans and cabins. They are all located within an indoor garden area to really give the feel of a real campsite. In love with this concept!
The Michelberger Hotel
Located in the hipster district of Kreuzberg, The Michelberger Hotel is every bit as stylish as the neighbourhood. This is an ideal choice for those looking to party & explore the alternative side to Berlin. Capturing the creative side of the city, are the artistic and imaginative guest rooms.
25 Hours Hotel Bikini
Hotel Bikini is referred to as a chic urban jungle. Animal themes, long leafy plants, and quirky features resonate throughout the property. It’s literally a wonderland for adults, and we are loving it.
Thank You for Reading
Well, that concludes our list of Instagram spots in Berlin. I hope you found this guide helpful and that you have a fantastic time exploring the city.
If you’re planning a trip to Berlin? Check out our other articles to help you plan.
Finally, we love hearing from you. If you have any questions or feedback, you can reach out to us in the comment section below or through our contact us page.
Stay adventurous and happy travels.
Charlotte & Natalie x
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. That means that if you purchase through these links, we will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. And we can continue bringing you free travel tips and advice. If you use our affiliates, you are awesome, and we thank you!
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Last Updated on October 20, 2021 by Our Taste For Life