Getting Around Berlin

A highly developed transportation system makes getting around in Berlin a breeze. Two commercial airlines serve Berlin and handle upwards of 20 million passengers each year. Tegel Airport (TXL) is the larger of the two and is located within the city of Berlin. Schönefeld Airport (SXF) is smaller and located just to the south-east of the city but is well-connected to major transportation lines in the city via public transportation, airline shuttle and private taxis.

Berlin is renowned for its extensive cycling routes and bike paths. Many companies offer bicycle based tourism packages but bicycling is also an excellent option for independent travelers. Rental bikes are readily available in the city and flexible rental options are everywhere. Bikes can even be rented by the minute offering maximum flexibility for travelers and residents alike.

The municipal train system is called the U-Bahn and is extremely convenient within city limits. The S-Bahn is owned by Deutsche Bahn, the national rail operator, and transports within city limits as well to some of Berlin's closest suburbs. Deutsche Bahn also manages a network of regional trains, which stop less frequently than S-Bahn lines and carry passengers further into the Berlin-Brandenburg surburban area. Berlin also offers an extensive tram network. The tram network is particularly well-developed in East Berlin where it serves many areas not well-served by the U-Bahn and S-Bahn systems.

Berlin's bus system is another option when the U-Bahn and S-Bahn system falters. The bus network reaches many areas poorly served by other transportation options and operates both day and night. Uniquely, Berlin's bussing system offers several hundred double-decker busses, which are very uncommon in Europe outside of the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Ferries serve several areas within city boundaries. These include the Havel, Spree and Dahme rivers as well as many lakes and canals. Some ferries operate off the common public transport tariff but a number of other routes are independently owned and operated. Ferries also connect Berlin to the adjacent city of Potsdam.

Berlin is well-connected to Germany's famous Autobahn. Car rental is relatively simple within Berlin and suits independent travelers who may wish to go outside of the city limits for day trips or longer journeys into the countryside. Taxis are readily available for those who simply want to move quickly and do not mind paying a little more for privacy and greater control of the journey.