How To Reach Berlin
Berlin is one of the world’s most beautiful and most tragic cities in the same breath. While it has seen the horrors of the World Wars, the Cold War and brutal division between the Eastern and Western Bloc, Berlin has also emerged like a phoenix from the ashes of those horrors in the form of its beautiful buildings, museums, street art and more. It dates back to the 13th Century and is today Germany’s capital, drawing all kinds of tourism into its arms. Here’s a simple guide to help you reach Berlin.
Berlin boasts of two of the country’s most significant international airports - Berlin Tegel Airport and Schonefield Airport. It receives regular flights from India, with the forerunners being Air India, Lufthansa, British Airways, Etihad, Qatar and Air France. All these flights have a stopover in either a middle-eastern country like Dubai or in a European city. You will need to take a Schengen visa as Germany is part of the Schengen agreement.
From Tegel Airport, frequent buses and subways ply into the city, while the S-Bahn trains and Airport Express connect the airport to the city centre. You can also hail a cab.
To travel to Berlin by road, you will need to be in the continent of Europe. If you are, then know this - all roads, one way or another, will lead to Berlin. This landlocked city has A2 highway to its west and A12 to the east, while A11 comes from the north and A9 from south into its hinterland. All these roads culminate into the Berliner Ring, also known as A10, that circles the outer city. Hence you can easily drive a car yourself into Berlin from nearby cities like Prague, Copenhagen, Vienna, Budapest, London, Paris etc. Bus services like Mein Fernbus, Berlin Linien Bus, Postbus and Eurolines run plush, air-con buses from all over Europe, some even with WiFi.
Berlin and all of Germany has been covered very well with rail network. The Hauptbahnhof Railway Station of Berlin becomes a great hub of Inter Regio and Euro City trains coming in from all over Europe, be it London, Belgium, Paris, Budapest or Geneva. Most of these trains are direct ones, and overnight express trains that take no more than 8-10 hours at once. For domestic and inter-city travel, Berlin is very well connected to Hamburg, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Cologne and Munich too.
Berlin is a very beautiful and a very contemporary city, and it has one of the best networks of public transport to its credit. There are two main train networks in the city - the Underground or U-Bahn and Light Rail or S-Bahn. These together make travel very convenient and efficient. U-Bahn operates even at nights, on holidays and weekends too, and are best for short-distance local travel. Other than trains, there are buses which happen to be cheaper and more feasible to quickly hop on and off. Metro trams follow in its stead, but are only limited to the eastern Berlin area. Otherwise, you can always use taxis, Uber cabs, hired bicycles and even segways in some areas to get around.