I have visited Berlin many times as a wheelchair user, and have found that most of the must-see attractions are wheelchair accessible. Some sights are only partially accessible, and a few are not at all accessible. In some cases, disabled travelers may be forced to adapt from the norm to participate in certain experiences, but it is possible with some advance planning.  See the information below concerning many of the top sights Berlin has to offer:

Brandenburg Gate

Wheelchair Accessible Attractions & Sights in BerlinCompleted in 1791, the Brandenburg Gate is a neoclassical triumphal arch that is now one of the most recognized landmarks in all of Germany. The gate serves as the monumental entryway to the Unter den Linden, the historic boulevard which once led to the imperial palaces.

Commissioned by King Frederick William II of Prussia, the Brandenburg Gate stood proudly until it was damaged in World War II. With the splitting of Germany following the war, the Brandenburg Gate was isolated and cut off by the Berlin Wall. It was not until 2000 that the gate was restored. Today it stands as an important tourist attraction and symbol of the tumultuous history of Germany and greater Europe. The gate is easily accessible and stands only one block from the Reichstag.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S1/S2/S25 lines at S Brandenburger Tor station

The Reichstag Building

Built in 1894, the Reichstag housed the Imperial Diet of the German Empire until 1933, when the building was severely damaged by fire. In the closing days of World War II, the Reichstag was looted and defaced by the invading Russian military. It was not until after German reunification in October 1990 that attention was paid to the building. From 1992 through 1999, the Reichstag building underwent extensive reconstruction and renovation. Following the building’s completion, it again became the meeting place of the German Parliament or Bundestag.

Berlin Reichstag Wheelchair Access

Guided tours of the building are offered in numerous languages, including English, when parliament is not sitting. The tours last 90 minutes and grant visitors access to the ground floor, rooftop and the iconic dome. The building’s history and architecture is discussed during a walk-through of the structure. Visitors will have the opportunity to pass by the doors of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s offices next to the Bundestag chamber. All tours are offered free of charge but must be reserved in advance. For information or to book a tour of the Reichstag building, visit www.bundestag.de. The Reichstag building, tour, rooftop and dome are all fully wheelchair accessible. Accessible restrooms are available on site.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest U-Bahn:  U55 line at U Bundestag station

Museum Island

The Bode Museum on Museum Island
Photo by Thomas Wolf.

Museum Island, a small island in the Spree River in central Berlin, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a treasure of the city.  The island is so named for the five significant museums which are located on the northern part of the island.  The Altes Museum (Old Museum) was built in 1830 and held the Prussian Royal family’s art collection.  It now houses the Collection of Classical Antiquities, with the Greek collection on permanent display.  The Bode Museum, opened in 1904, currently exhibits sculpture collections and Byzantine art.  The Pergamom Museum, constructed in 1930, now displays reconstructed monumental buildings from the Middle East.  The final two museums on the island are the Alte Nationalgalerie (Old National Gallery) and Neues Museum (New Museum).  Each museum differs in accessibility, but they are all mostly accessible.  For additional information on accessibility, collections and tickets/costs, visit www.smb.museum.

For more information on the institutions on the island, read below and don’t forget to check out my blog post, Museum Island: Get Your Art On in Berlin, Germany!
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S5/S7/S75 lines at S Hackescher Markt station; Nearest BUS: 100/200/N2 at Lustgarten

Berlin Cathedral

The Supreme Parish and Collegiate Church, or Berlin Cathedral, is located on the picturesque Museum Island. It is the largest church in the City of Berlin. Although the current cathedral building was opened in 1905, the original church on the site was the Roman Catholic St. Erasmus Chapel, consecrated in 1454. Since the year 1539, the churches here have housed Protestant worship.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Berlin Cathedral on the banks of the Spree River.

The present building is the 4th Christian church on the site. It was closed until 1993 after damage incurred during the Second World War. Even though it is referred to as the Berlin Cathedral, it has never actually been one – it has never been the seat of a bishop.

Tours of the church are available to the public. Admission for adults is € 7,00, with a discounted admission of € 5,00 for children, students, retirees and the severely disabled. As a triple amputee and wheelchair user, I qualified for the reduced rate. Entrance to the Cathedral is possible for wheelchair users, but not through the main point of entry. Proceed to the left of the Church building and front staircase, where you will find a chain link fence with call button. Press the call button, and notify the staff member who responds that you are using a wheelchair (rollstuhl in German). You will be taken through the gate and up to the ground floor via a large elevator.

For more information on the cathedral and tour, visit its website at www.berliner-dom.de.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S5/S7/S75 lines at S Hackescher Markt station; Nearest BUS: 100/200/N2 at Lustgarten

Alte Nationalgalerie

The Old National Gallery, located on Museum Island, is Berlin’s premier art gallery. The collection features Neoclassical, Romantic, Impressionist and Modernist artwork.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Berlin's Alte Nationalgalerie on Museum Island.

The National Gallery was founded in Berlin in 1861, and ground was broken on the present structure in 1867. The gallery was opened in 1876, containing the works of only Prussian artists. Over the next century, the collection expanded and grew to include the largest repository of modern French art.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Zigeunlager painting at the Alte Nationalgalerie in Berlin, Germany.The collection is vast, and I spent several hours admiring the artwork and sculptures during my recent visit.

The collection includes works by many celebrated artists including Caspar David Friedrich, Max Liebermann, Edouard Manet, Adolph von Menzel, Claude Monet and Johan Gottfried Schadow. My favorite painting, pictured on the left, was the 1873 work of Hungarian painter Mihály Munkácsy’s Zigeunerlager (Gypsy Camp).

Other must-see works are Friedrich’s The Monk by the Sea and von Menzel’s The Iron Rolling Mill, the latter being my second favorite work on display.

Wheelchair access is possible through a door on the right side of the building. Elevators permit barrier-free access to each floor of the gallery. Wheelchair accessible restrooms are located on the ground floor.

Admission to the Alte Nationalgalerie is available to adults for € 12,00. Alternatively, you can purchase a pass to all of the island’s museums for € 18,00 – a much better deal! For more information, visit the museum website. Be sure to read detailed my blog post, Museum Island: Get Your Art On in Berlin, Germany!
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S5/S7/S75 lines at S Hackescher Markt station; Nearest BUS: 100/200/N2 at Lustgarten

Bode Museum

Originally named in honor of Emperor Frederick III, the Bode Museum was renamed in the 1950s for its first curator, Wilhelm von Bode. The museum opened in its current building on Museum Island in 1904. It today houses a diverse collection of sculptures, Byzantine art, religious pieces and coins. The collection contains pieces from the Middle Ages, Italian Gothic period and the Renaissance.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Christian religion gallery at the Bode Museum in Berlin, Germany.

The most interesting exhibit hall to me was room 220, which contained religious artifacts from the Italian Renaissance period. In the foreground is a marble tabernacle, a central component of Catholic churches of the Renaissance and today. The painting at the center of the room is an altarpiece that is known to have come from Lucca, Italy. This painting depicts the Annunciation, with the Virgin Mary seated at her desk. Other pieces in this exhibit include choir stalls and a choir lectern, as well as busts, sculptures, crosses and other church complements taken from Italy.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Wheelchair stair lift platform at Bode Museum in Berlin, Germany.The Bode Museum is wheelchair accessible. The accessible entry point is at the building’s front-left. A wheelchair lift is built into the stairway, in which the stairs for a flat platform to lift wheelchairs up. Press the call button on the control railing (photo on the left, click to enlarge) to call for assistance. Two of these lifts are used to permit access to the entry hall, and another lift is used to carry wheelchairs into the main level. From there, access to different floors of the museum is made possible by elevators.

Admission to the Bode Museum is available to adults for € 12,00. Alternatively, you can purchase a pass to all of the island’s museums for € 18,00. For more information, visit the museum website. Be sure to read detailed my blog post, Museum Island: Get Your Art On in Berlin, Germany!
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S5/S7/S75 lines at S Hackescher Markt station; Nearest BUS: 100/200/N2 at Lustgarten

Pergamon Museum

The most visited art museum in Germany is the Pergamon Museum, located on Berlin’s Museum Island. The museum was built from 1910 to 1930, and is best known for its original size reconstructions of monumental buildings. The museum’s contents are separated into the Antiquities, Middle East and Islamic Art collections.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: The Ishtar Gate reconstruction at the Pergamon Museum in Berlin, Germany.

The most popular reconstruction is the Ishtar Gate, built in the year 575 BC on the north side of the City of Babylon. The gate was excavated in the 20th century, and the wall gate was reconstructed using the original bricks that were unearthed. The reconstruction that is seen in the Pergamon Museum is described as one of the most complex archaeological excavations and reconstructions in history.

The Pergamon Museum is wheelchair accessible, but a few of the installations and reconstructed pieces can only be seen from a distance. That said, I would estimate that 95% of the pieces are equally accessible to wheelchair users and the able-bodied, including the Ishtar Gate.

Admission to the Pergamon Museum is available to adults for € 12,00. Alternatively, you can purchase a pass to all of the island’s museums for € 18,00. For more information, visit the museum website. Be sure to read detailed my blog post, Museum Island: Get Your Art On in Berlin, Germany!
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S5/S7/S75 lines at S Hackescher Markt station; Nearest BUS: 100/200/N2 at Lustgarten

Berlin TV Tower

The Fernsehturm is a television tower in Berlin, located near to Alexanderplatz. Construction was completed in 1969, and the tower stands at a height of 1,207 feet (to the tip of its antenna). The Berlin TV Tower is the fourth largest freestanding structure in Europe, behind other broadcasting towers in Moscow, Kiev and Riga.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Berlin TV Tower as seen from Museum Island.

A visitor platform is located inside the tower at a height of 666 feet. Due to safety concerns, wheelchair users are not permitted to visit the platform. If you are independently mobile, you can visit, but you will not be allowed to take a wheelchair with you. This frustrates me, because I would love to take in the view which is sure to be breathtaking. The tower explains the decision to limit access to the able-bodied on its website.

Potsdamer Platz & Sony Center

The Sony Center at night.Prior to World War II, Potsdamer Platz stood at the corner of Europe’s most bustling traffic intersection. Devastated during the war, Potsdamer Platz disintegrated further during the Cold War. The Berlin Wall, which divided the East and West sections of the city, ran directly through Potsdamer Platz, crossing what was once a center of urban life. Since the fall of the wall and reunification of Germany, Potsdamer Platz has been revitalized and has become a major gathering place for tourists from around the world. The Sony Center is a key component of Potsdamer Platz. Inside, the center boasts an IMAX Theater, shops, restaurants, bars, art & film museums, hotel rooms and office space. Within a block of the Sony Center are the U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations at Potsdamer Platz. Both stations are wheelchair accessible. Potsdamer Platz is only a short walk from the Memorial to the Murdered Jews in Europe, the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag. The area is fully accessible.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S+U-Bahn:  S1, S2, S5 and U2 lines at S+U Potsdamer Platz station

Schloss Charlottenburg Palace

Constructed between 1695 and 1713, Charlottenburg Palace is the largest palace in Berlin and the only surviving royal palace dating back to the Hohenzollern family.  It was the home to 7 different Prussian kings over three centuries.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: The Charlottenburg Palace building, as seen from far across the lake and set against a beautiful blue and white clouded sky.

Today, the palace grounds are open to the public. Wheelchair access is limited in the buildings themselves, but the immaculate gardens with winding pathways along the Spree River are fully accessible. The primary attraction, the Alter Schloss or Old Palace, is accessible on the first floor to wheelchair users. There were rumors of an elevator to the second floor, but that had not come to fruition as of June 2016.

If you would like to learn more about accessibility at the Schloss Charlottenburg, read my detailed blog post (with many photos): Summer Tour of Charlottenburg Palace.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  0.4 miles from S41/S42/S45/S46 lines at S Westend station

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe

Commonly referred to more simply as the Holocaust Memorial, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe sits amid one of the most visited tourist areas in Berlin. Opened to the public in 2005, the Memorial was designed by architect Peter Eisenman and engineer Buro Happold. Covering 4.7 acres, it is composed of 2,711 concrete slabs with a uniform length and width, but varying heights. The slabs, or stelae, are arranged in a grid pattern across sloping terrain. The “Place of Information” on the memorial grounds holds the names of all known Jewish victims of the Holocaust. While many visitors take away the image of a graveyard, the designer intended for it to “represent a supposedly ordered system that has lost touch with human reason.” Wheelchair users are able to access the memorial and move between the various rows of stelae as they are spaced apart. The memorial is nearby Potsdamer Platz and is only one block from the Brandenburg Gate.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest U-Bahn:  0.3 miles from U2 line at U Kochstr. station
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  0.3 miles from S1/S2/S25 lines at S Anhalter Bhf station

Wannsee Conference House & Museum

Held on January 20, 1942, the Wannsee Conference brought Nazi administrative leaders together to discuss the implementation of the “Final Solution,” the mass extermination of European Jews. Among the attendees of the conference were Reinhard Heydrich, Heinrich Müller and Adolf Eichmann. The meeting took place in a private villa on the lake in Wannsee, a suburb of Berlin. Following the war, the house was used as a schoolhouse. In 1992, some 50 years after the conference was held, a museum and memorial opened in the villa where the murder of millions was implemented.

House of the 1942 Wannsee Conference

The house now hosts the permanent exhibit, “The Wannsee Conference and the Genocide of the European Jews.” This exhibit contains copies of the documents which depict the planning and implementation of the Final Solution from its very beginnings with the rise of Adolf Hitler. The 15-room exhibit starts the historical journey with the rise of Hitler and the onset of anti-Semitism. Deportations, life in ghettos, forced labor, concentration camps and, ultimately, the death camps are also studied and analyzed by the museum.

Entrance to the Wannsee House and Museum is completely free. The house is fully accessible with a wheelchair ramp at the front door and level floors throughout. The museum/villa grounds are also accessible. For more information on the house’s history and the exhibits within the museum, visit ghwk.de. Bus 114 provides service between the Wannsee Conference House and the Wannsee S-Bahn station. The 1.5 mile walk between the house and train station is a very nice walk/roll along the lake and through the historic neighborhood surrounding the house.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest BUS:  114 between Wannsee House & S1 line at S Wannsee station

Topography of Terror

An exhibit inside the Topography of TerrorOpened in May 2010, the Topography of Terror is a museum which documents the history of the Gestapo, the SS and the rise of the Nazi regime through the use of propaganda and terror. The museum sits on the site of the Gestapo and SS headquarters, which were destroyed in the final months of the Second World War. The cellar of the Gestapo headquarters, the site where many political prisoners were tortured and executed between 1933 and 1945, was found and excavated. It is now on display to the public. The largest section of the Berlin Wall which still stands borders the Topography of Terror and can be seen and touched by visitors. The Topography of Terror is free to enter and its exhibits are presented in both German and English. The entire museum and grounds are fully wheelchair accessible. For more information on the museum, its exhibitions and operating hours, visit topographie.de.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest U-Bahn:  0.3 miles from U2 line at U Kochstr. station
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  0.3 miles from S1/S2/S25 lines at S Anhalter Bhf station

Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie, or Checkpoint C, was the most famous border crossing between East and West Germany in Berlin. The Berlin Wall was built to prevent East Germans from defecting to the West. Checkpoint Charlie was staffed by American soldiers and was the site of many tense moments during the Cold War. One such moment was in 1961, when United States and Soviet tanks faced one another at the border crossing. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the checkpoint was dismantled. It was soon recreated and is today a major tourist attraction. Visitors can take a photo in front of a reproduction of the original guard booth with actors dressed in American military period uniforms for a fee. It is also possible to get a Checkpoint Charlie passport stamp. Directly adjacent to the checkpoint is the Museum Haus am Checkpoint Charlie, a museum which first opened in 1962, long before the fall of the wall and the opening of the border. For more information on the museum and the checkpoint, visit www.mauermuseum.de.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest U-Bahn:  U2 line at U Kochstr. station

Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp

Established in 1936, the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp initially housed political prisoners. The camp is located in Oranienburg, a suburb of Berlin served by the S-Bahn. As the Nazi war effort moved forward, the camp took in Soviet prisoners of war, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Jews. The camp was not originally intended to be a site of executions, but these began to be carried out in 1939. Prisoners were murdered by firing squad and bodies were deposited in mass graves. In March 1943, a gas chamber was installed, allowing for larger numbers of prisoners to be killed. The camp and its 3,000 inmates were liberated on April 22, 1945 by the Russian and Polish armies.

Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp

Today, Sachsenhausen is open to the public and serves as both a memorial and a museum. A number of the camp’s original buildings have survived or have been reconstructed. These structures include guard towers, camp barracks, the camp entrance, border walls and the crematory ovens. Exhibits are located throughout the numerous buildings in the camp, depicting the reality of the prisoners’ experiences there. The museum and buildings within the camp are all wheelchair accessible, with ramps for entry into each building. There are pathways throughout the camp grounds, some of which are made of cobblestones. These areas will prevent a smooth ride in a wheelchair, but they are passable by both manual and powered wheelchairs/scooters. Admission to the museum and camp is free of charge. For more information on the camp and museum, visit www.stiftung-bg.de.

Read my expanded review of the camp:  Wheelchair Access at Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, Berlin
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  1 mile from S1 line at S Oranienburg station


Olympic Stadium

The Olympiastadion is a sports stadium, built between 1934 to 1936, as a venue for the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. It was not longer after that war would consume Europe, but the stadium survived with little damage. The stadium later hosted three matches of the 1974 FIFA World Cup and another six matches, including the final in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The stadium regularly hosts European football matches, but also serves as a venue for music concerts. Since its 2006 renovation, Olympiastadion is wheelchair accessible and has 174 reserved wheelchair spaces on the 41st row of the lower level. For more information on the stadium, accessibility, upcoming events or to purchase tickets, visit www.olympiastadion-berlin.de.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S+U-Bahn:  S5 & U2 lines at U Olympia-Stadion station

Berlin Wall Memorial

The Gedenkstätte Berliner Mauer, or Berlin Wall Memorial, is a semi-preserved display of what was a former border crossing between the East and West sides of Berlin during the Cold War.

PHOTO DESCRIPTION: Berlin Wall Memorial.

The Memorial features the Monument in Memory of the Divided City and the Victims of Communist Tyranny and the Window of Remembrance. A Visitor Center and Documentation Center are also located on site. A portion of the Berlin Wall, measuring some 200 feet in length, has remained standing since the wall was broken through in 1989 and is available for visitors to view. Admission to the memorial and its exhibits is provided free of charge. The property and grounds are wheelchair accessible and provide a look at the nature ad reality of Berlin’s division during the Cold War. For more information on the memorial, visit www.berliner-mauer-gedenkstaette.de.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest U-Bahn:  U55 line at U Bundestag station


Potsdam is the capital city of the German federal state of Brandenburg. The city is 24 km (15 miles) Southwest of Berlin and is situated on the Havel River. It is only a 40 minute train ride from Berlin’s central station, connected via Berlin’s S-Bahn line S7. The city was once a residence for Prussian kings and the German Kaiser, until 1918. Following the Second World War, Potsdam hosted a series of meetings between the Allied leaders Harry S. Truman,  Joseph Stalin, Winston Churchill and Clement Atlee at Schloss Cecilienhof, a palace built by the Hohenzollern family. The palace and museum there are open to the public at a cost of €6.00.  Additional information can be found at www.spsg.de.

The City of Potsdam, a suburb of Berlin

I am hoping to build a complete accessibility report for the city of Potsdam soon. Until that is completed, a few tips and links for planning your day trip to Potsdam are provided here. All city buses in Potsdam are wheelchair accessible with lowered floors and wheelchair ramps. The city also has street cars/trams, but they are not all accessible. Lines 92, 92, 93, 94, 96 and 99 are wheelchair accessible. For more information on public transportation in Potsdam, visit www.swp-potsdam.de (German only). The central train station in the city, Potsdam Hbf, is wheelchair accessible with elevators to each train platform. City sidewalks are accessible, with curb cuts at most intersections. Sidewalks and streets are well cared for, but some are made of cobblestone or brick. Please share your experiences visiting Potsdam in a wheelchair or with a disability in the comments section at the bottom of this page.
Subway Metro Icon Nearest S-Bahn:  S7 line at Potsdam Hbf station