City and waters – take the S-Bahn to Berlin's rivers and canals

Collection by
S-Bahn Berlin

Even if it is sometimes not so noticeable, Berlin is a real water city. Without the freight traffic on the Spree, the city would never have grown so quickly in the 19th century – building materials and food could be brought reliably into the city on the waterways compared to via muddy roads and fragile railways. Over time, the Spree was joined by a number of canals to relieve the river. When you look at a map of Berlin, you can see an extensive network of rivers and canals. In our Collection, you can discover these waterways yourself on eight different routes.

A collection about water in Berlin has to include a hike along the Spree – that's why we’ve included two suggestions for you. You can, for example, explore the Spree and the Spree Canal around Fischerinsel, the historic centre of Berlin. Or, why not enjoy the wide promenade between Moabit and Charlottenburg and stroll through the famous Schlosspark. You can then take a walk along the Spandauer Canal, which connects Berlin's city centre with Westhafen.

The banks of the Landwehr Canal in Neukölln and Kreuzberg are also worth a visit. Here, you can get to know two thriving trendy districts from their quiet and idyllic side. With a length of almost 40 kilometres, the Teltow Canal is one of the longest canals in Berlin – but don't worry, you don't have to walk the whole way. We have planned a beautiful route for you on its southeastern section.

Our last three walks are less urban. In Spandau the Havel has beautiful views and wide marsh meadows. Meanwhile, Marzahn and Hellersdorf hide the re-natured Whule between their skyscrapers. And in the very east, in the idyllic Erpetal valley, you even forget that you are still in Berlin.

You can reach all our routes comfortably and stress-free with the Berlin S-Bahn. Whichever hike you choose, you will get to know Berlin from a new perspective.

On The Map

Tours & Highlights

  • Easy
    01:16
    3.09 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Spreeinsel in Mitte forms the historic core of Berlin. It bears the name Museumsinsel in the north, in the middle stood the city palace and palace of the republic and the southern part is called Fischerinsel. The Spree island was surrounded by the Spree in the north and the Cölln ditch in the south. With the growing number of ships and rafts on the Spree, the originally natural tributary of the Spree was expanded to the Spree Canal. On our round you will once wander around the Spreeinsel and experience the changing times in the historic center of Berlin.Your round starts at the S-Bahn station Jannowitzbrücke, which is served by the lines S3, S5, S7 and S9. Here you cross the Spree and enjoy the view across the water to the TV tower and the skyscrapers on the Fischerinsel. Along the banks of the Spree you pass the museum ships in the Old Town Harbor. Then it's over the island bridge and the Spreekanal around the fishing island around.Shortly thereafter, you will cross the wide street bridge of the Getraudenstraße, where countless cars cross the canal day in and day out. Now you enter a particularly quiet section of the canal: the Friedrichsgracht. On one side are unadorned East German prefabricated buildings, on the opposite side the impressive facade of the Foreign Office. Right in the middle is the historic Jungfernbrücke, a tiny drawbridge over the canal.After you've passed the weir, it's over the canal again and then over the Schinkelplatz. Here you can take a look at the Humboldtforum, the new building of the Berlin City Palace. This is not finished at the moment, but already offers a magnificent sight. Next to it are the Berlin Cathedral and the Old Museum. The path leads with a beautiful view of the buildings of the Museum Island to the mouth of the canal in the Spree.On the headland, the Bodemuseum with its distinctive domed roof rises above the water. You cross the Channel and the Spree and then stroll through Monbijou Park and James Simon Park back towards the Duomo, which you can admire from the Vera Brittain shore. At the Mühlendammschleuse you will finally walk back to the S-Bahn station Jannowitzbrücke.

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  • Intermediate
    04:23
    10.6 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    325 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Wuhle is a quiet, narrow tributary of the Spree. Coming from the Barnim plateau, the river gently laps through the east of Berlin. The Wuhle also passes the high-rise housing estates in Marzahn and Hellersdorf. However, as the river valley is beautifully renatured and lined with trees, you will not notice anything on a hike in the Wuhletal. On our tour you will accompany the Wuhle from Ahrensfelde on the outskirts of Berlin to its confluence with the Spree in Köpenick.With the S-Bahn line S7 you drive to the last stop Ahrensfelde. From here it is a few steps through the GDR high-rise district and you are already standing on the vast meadows of Wuhletal. You will pass a game enclosure full of shaggy highland cattle and then make your way up to the Großer Ahrensfelder Berg. From the top you have a great view of the Berlin skyline in the distance and the absurdity of high-rise settlements right in front of you.From now on it goes on comfortable ways through the narrow, renatured Wuhletal. At the popular gardens of the world, the gondolas of the Kienberg cable car float across the valley and at the Kaulsdorfer ponds you can observe many birds all year round.Shortly after you reach the S-Bahn station Wuhletal - if you are the 17 kilometers of the hike too long, you can also jump into the train here and thus shorten the tour to almost nine kilometers.Now it gets really idyllic again. Between the quiet residential areas of Biesdorf and Kaulsdorf, the Wuhle winds its way further south. Once you stroll through meadows, sometimes under trees until you finally reach your destination, the S-Bahn station Köpenick. If you like, you can also attach a few steps here and continue to the confluence of the Wuhle in the Spree.

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  • Easy
    01:59
    4.73 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    100 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Havel shapes Spandau like no other district in Berlin. Narrow and swift, then wide and sluggish, the Havel winds its way through the old town and past the citadel to finally flow into the Wannsee in the south. On the way, she also takes along the Spree, which joins the Havel only a few meters behind the citadel. On our tour we lead you from the old town of Spandau always along the Havel towards the south.Starting point is the S-Bahn station Spandau, which is approached by the lines S3 and S9. From here it is only a few steps to Havelufer. On the wide promenade you stroll comfortably and enjoy the beautiful view. After you have passed the Burgwallgraben, our route takes you over the Schuleburg bridge on the other side of Havel.Here you first walk through a quiet residential district, until you reach the Tiefwerder meadows. It is a landscape conservation area made up of lush wet meadows on which even water buffalo live as part of a grazing project. Maybe you are lucky enough to discover the animals yourself.From the Tiefwerder meadows you briefly cross the army road and then wander out on the peninsula Pichelswerder. Here you go to the southern tip - from here you can enjoy a magnificent view over the sprawling Havel and the Grunewald. Finally, you follow our route to the S-Bahn station Pichelsberg, where you can take the S3 and S9 lines home.

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  • Intermediate
    02:09
    5.25 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    In order to supply the growing city of Berlin with the required amount of goods in the 19th century, transport by water became more and more important. But soon the Spree was no longer enough - so they decided to build the Landwehr Canal to relieve the Spree. At the opening in 1850, the canal was still outside the city wall, but only a few decades later its banks were densely built on both sides. In 1902, the connection to the Teltow Canal finally took place via the new Neukölln shipping canal. On our tour we will guide you along the two canals through the district of Neukölln and Kreuzberg - and you will be surprised how quiet it is here on the shore.Starting point of your tour is the S-Bahn station Sonnenallee, which you can easily reach with the lines S41 and S42. From here it goes through a short industrial park and you are already standing on the shores of the Neukölln navigation canal. Of the many ships at the beginning of the 20th century, not many are left today - apart from a few excursion steamers are hardly any on the way.You stroll along the shore and enjoy the view of the water and the other shore - here is already Treptow. After about two and a half kilometers, the Neukölln shipping canal flows into the Landwehrkanal and here the boundaries of the three districts Treptow, Neukölln and Kreuzberg meet.Now it goes on for you along the Landwehr Canal - sometimes on Kreuzberg and sometimes on Neuköllner side. Incidentally, here you can clearly see which clientele lived in what parts of the city at the time: on the Neuköllner Ufer are simple tenements and on the Kreuzberg side magnificent town houses from the Wilhelminian era. By the way, right on the shore and in the surrounding streets you will find several cozy cafes and restaurants for a break.On a nice green way you stroll past the Urbanhafen and the Hallesches Tor. Leave the canal at the Möckernbrücke and reach the park at the Gleisdreieck to reach your destination, the S-Bahn station Yorckstraße. Lines S2, S25 and S26 will bring you back home from here.

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  • Intermediate
    03:43
    9.13 mi
    2.5 mph
    75 ft
    100 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Because the Spree at the beginning of the 20th century was already overcrowded by ships, barges and boats, 1900 was started with a bypass channel. The same channel, the Teltow Canal, was officially opened six years later and allowed ships and boats to bypass the city center. But soon the Teltow Canal became too narrow for the new ships. In order to protect the canal and especially its shores, one set up a towed traffic. Electric tugs then moved the unmotorized barges through the canal. Above all due to the German division, the canal lost its importance and today only a few ships sail across the Teltow Canal. On our route you can get to know the southeastern section of the Teltow Canal.Start at the S-Bahn station Sonnenallee, which is served by the lines S41 and S42. For a while you stroll through the urban bustle of Neukölln, until you reach the Teltow Canal on the Buschkrugallee. On the section you visit on this tour, the canal was also part of the inner German border: on one side the West Berlin Neukölln, on the other side the East Berlin Treptow and Johannisthal.There are no traces left of the wall - just like the towpath. Instead, you can walk along the banks of the former railroad track of the Treidelloks and enjoy the peaceful tranquility in the middle of the big city.Our leisurely route leads you along the shore, past Johannisstadt, Britz, Altglienicke and Adlershof, until finally the Teltowkanal joins the Dahme at Grünau. Here you can take a last look at the wider water, before you start the journey home on the S46 train station Grünau with the lines S46, S8 or S85.

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  • Intermediate
    03:01
    7.39 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    150 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    On the eastern edge of the city, the Erpe ripples across wide meadows, through old castle parks and quiet forests, until it joins the Spree between Köpenick and Friedrichshagen. If you stroll through the wide landscape, you will quickly forget that you are only half an hour away from Alexanderplatz by S-Bahn. On our route we take you from Hoppegarten on quiet forest paths and over beautiful meadows to Friedrichshagen.Take the S5 comfortably out of town and get off at Hoppegarten S-Bahn station. From here you follow our route past the Trapprennbahn and into the idyllic Erpetal. After a short detour to Dahlwitz and the Lenné-Schlosspark Dahlwitz, you will hike on quiet paths through a sparse forest.Again and again you will meet the Erpe, who meanders through the countryside. At the old Heidemühle, which is now a holiday home, you cross the Erpe and finally you look over the wide, gentle meadows. Here you can throw yourself in the grass with a blanket for half an hour and enjoy the peace and quiet.You follow the Erpe, which soon winds through a small garden area. After you have crossed under the S-Bahn tracks, you leave the river and walk a few steps through Friedrichshagen. On the tranquil Bölschestraße you can then take a rest in one of the cafes or restaurants, before it goes back with the S3 line from the S-Bahn station Friedrichshagen.

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  • Intermediate
    02:29
    6.03 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    75 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    While the Spree east of Alexanderplatz is built on both sides to close to the shore, in Hansaviertel, in Moabit and in Charlottenburg wide promenades await you with beautiful meadows and ancient trees - a wonderful place for a long walk. On our tour, you will always walk from Berlin Central Station along the river Spree to Schloss Charlottenburg.Starting point is the main station Berlin. The impressive building - after all, the largest tower station in Europe - is approached by the S-Bahn lines S3, S5, S7 and S9. You leave the station and walk across the forecourt to the banks of the Spree, where the entire government district presents itself to you.On the wide, beautifully designed Uferweg you stroll comfortably in the west. It passes the Federal Chancellery, the House of World Cultures and the new and old Hansaviertel. While in the old Hansaviertel splendid town houses decorate the bank, the new Hansaviertel consists of the modern buildings of the Interbau 1957.Leisurely, the Spree meanders through the city and you follow all its meanders, inspect new, old and renovated bridges and enjoy the tranquility in the middle of the city. Arriving at the Charlottenburg Palace, it is definitely worth a walk through the extensive castle park or a detour to the café in the Kleiner Orangerie. Afterwards you will drive home from Jungfernheide S-Bahn station with the S41 or S42 line.

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  • Easy
    01:31
    3.67 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    100 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.

    The Spandau shipping canal connects the Havel with the Westhafen and continues from there to Berlin Hauptbahnhof, where the canal flows into the Spree. The shore is largely landscaped and designed as a narrow park strip - accordingly, you can stroll along here wonderfully and the big city bustle a bit out of the way. On our short tour we will take you from the Westhafen to the main station.If you fancy a longer tour, you can directly attach our Spree tour through the west of Berlin: komoot.de/tour/78490323You can reach the S-Bahn station Beusselstraße with the ring railway lines S41 and S42. From here it goes with great views of the warehouses of the West Harbor on the West Harbor Canal and then directly to the water. First you stroll a little along the West Harbor Canal, cross two bridges and then come to the Spandau shipping canal.From the grassy shore on your side, you can let your gaze wander across the water to the West Harbor, which is bustling with business. You walk on in the direction of the southeast and soon come to the north harbor. Of that, only the harbor basin is preserved today and the former harbor area is today a small park.Slowly it gets more and more urban, but also in Moabit the waterfront and the canal are at their best. Soon you will pass the magnificent building of the Ministry of Economics until you finally reach the harbor basin of the Humboldt Harbor. Around the pool are ultra-modern glass and steel buildings, including the Berlin Central Station. After taking a quick look at the Spree and the government district, you will be back home from the main station with S3, S5, S7 or S9.

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    8
  • Distance
    49.9 mi
  • Duration
    20:31 h
  • Elevation
    950 ft

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