Explore River Spree | Things To Do, History, Nearby Attractions & More
Berlin, with its burst of street art, graffiti, and hallowed structures perfectly blends the aspects of its rich history with modernity. Most of the buildings and tourist attractions in this city reflect its history. Among all the main attractions in the city is the River Spree, the heart of the city. The banks of this culturally relevant river are home to some of the city's significant structures and historical sites.
Here’s all you need to know about this important river.
Why Visit the River Spree in Berlin?
- Berlin’s soul: The Spree River banks are home to many significant structures and historical sites like the Palast der Republik, Schloss Charlottenburg, and the 13th century Nikolaiviertel.
- A lot of bridges: River Spree is an integral channel that connects the places in the city. There are around 50 bridges that span the Spree, and you may see 14 of them on a boat ride.
- A mind-blowing place to relax: There are several parks along Spree, such as Schloss Charlottenburg, Treptower Park, etc., which makes for a great place to spend relaxing time or take a stroll.
- Boat rides: A boat ride through the river is the best way to take in the beautiful skyscrapers and the riverside views of various landmarks.
Where is the River Spree Located?
The Spree, which spans around 400 km, flows across northeastern Germany. It begins in the Lusatian Mountains and then, after passing through Bautzen and Spremberg, momentarily divides into two sections. After passing through Lake Schwielochsee, it enters Berlin as Müggelspree.
- Starting point: Lusatian Mountains
- Ending point: River Havel
- Major attractions along the river: Museum Island, Tiergarten Park, Chancellery, etc.
Things To Do on the River Spree
Spree River Cruises
River Spree cruise boats are well-equipped with all the amenities that ensure your comfort during the sail, as you see several attractions such as Mercedes-Benz Arena, East Side Gallery, Nikolaiviertel, Media Spree Area, Berlin Cathedral, and more.
The Spree River cruises come with several options such as sightseeing tours, where you can catch a glimpse of the iconic sights of the city, dinner/lunch cruises where you can relish the flavours of various cuisine while taking in the attractions of the city, and more.Book Berlin Boat Tour Tickets
Around 50 bridges pass through the river, each connecting different river banks.
- The Oberbaum Bridge, regarded as Berlin's most beautiful bridge, links the Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain neighbourhoods.
- The Moltke Bridge, which crosses the Spree, links Alt-Moabit, which is on the north bank near the major train station, to Willy-Brandt-Strabe and the Chancellery, which is on the south bank.
- The Oberschöneweide and Niederschöneweide neighbourhoods are connected by the Treskow Bridge, a beautiful bridge that spans the Spree.
Plan Your Visit To River Spree
Visitors are welcome to enjoy or walk along the Spree banks at any time. However, most of the cruises through the river start at around 11 AM. The total duration of these cruises vary according to the option you choose.
River Spree is most enjoyable between May and September, as the weather will be pleasant, and the attractions around the river will be clearly visible.
There are several eateries offering delicious food items on the Spree riverside, where you can sit and enjoy the flavours of various cuisines while enjoying the riverside beauty. Here are some riverside restaurants you can opt for.
- RIVO Spreeterrassen
- Brasserie Ganymed
- Klubrestaurant Spindler & Klatt
- Carl & Sophie
- Bistro Heidi's Café
There are several restaurants that offer meals or buffet lunch and dinner at the Spree riverside.
Here are some of the best hotels near the banks of the river Spree that offer a breath-taking view of the river.
Budget hotels: Arte Luise Kunsthotel, InterCity Hotel, Hotel AMANO Grand Central.
Mid-range Hotels: Steigenberger Hotel am Kanzleramt, Ibis Berlin Hauptbahnhof, nhow Berlin.
Luxury Hotels: Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin, SO/ Berlin Das Stue, Hotel Indigo Berlin
- The peak season for the Spree river activities starts in April.
- While at Berlin, ensure to go on a cruise tour to witness the riverside view of iconic attractions.
- Every day, boats leave the boarding point at regular intervals. When booking, make sure to specify the time you want.
- Purchase your cruise tickets well in advance, and keep following up. Short notice cruise cancellations can be expected for various reasons.
Interesting Facts About River Spree
- The Spree is a part of a complex network of navigable canals in Berlin, many of which are man-made and offer a variety of pathways.
- The Oder-Spree Canal, which runs southeast from Berlin, is the most significant of the canals that connect the Spree to its adjacent waterways.
- Until the turn of the 20th century, there were fifteen public pools along the Spree, four of which were in the area between Jannowitzbruecke and Elsen Bruecke.
- Several locations along the river have dams, including the Spremberg and Bautzen dams. In addition to providing flood protection and energy, they are also water sources for power plants.
- Many of the country's top museums congregate on Museum Island, a UNESCO listed site, located on the north side of Spree Island.
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Frequently Asked Questions About River Spree
The Spree is an important river that flows through Berlin, and a lot of the city’s landmarks are located along this river.
No. You can visit the river any day as it’s always open to the public.
The Spree River flows across northeastern Germany.
The original Berlin city centre was constructed along the Spree. It is an integral part of Berlin, where a lot of the city’s iconic attractions are located.
The Spree river passes through Berlin city.
The depth of the river varies from place to place.
The Spree begins in the Lusatian Mountains and travels for roughly 400 kilometres until ending at the Havel River.
Spree River cruises are the finest way to discover Berlin city in a unique way.
It is better to plan ahead and reserve your tours and tickets for Spree cruises to ensure a nice and enjoyable visit.
Yes. Some of the river cruises come with audio guides in different languages.
Yes. River Spree is always open to the public. But, the cruises have timings that usually start from 11 AM.
Since 1925, the River Spree has been off-limits to swimmers due to rising pollution. However, temporary swimming events take place in the river.
Many well-known landmarks in Berlin, including Museum Island, Tiergarten Park, the Chancellery, etc., are situated along the Spree River, which flows through the centre of the city.
One can opt for a river cruise or a walk/ride through the various bridges across the river to enjoy the best views.
A walk along the banks of the river is the best way to explore the beauty of Spree in a budget-friendly way.
River cruises are the finest way to appreciate the beautiful Spree river. These cruises are well-equipped with amenities and food options that vary based on the cruise you opt for.
Yes. Some of the restaurants along the River Spree that offer delicious food options include RIVO Spreeterrassen, Brasserie Ganymed, Klubrestaurant Spindler & Klatt, etc.
Some of the famous bridges on the Spree include Oberbaum Bridge, Schlossbrücke, Moltkebrücke, etc.
No skip-the-line tickets are available for cruises. However, reserving your Spree River Cruises in advance will help you enjoy the experience better.