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Our Favourite

Swimming Spots in Berlin


Our Favourite Swimming Spots in Berlin

When the weather is fine one of the first things Berliners like to do is to get wet. We have nothing to base this on, but we don’t think there is a landlocked city in the world that has as many bathing options as our hometown does, from open air pools to lakes surrounded by forests, and all within the city limits.

If you’re coming to town this summer then here are some of our favourite swimming spots in Berlin to explore. And if that’s not enough, the state of Brandenburg which surrounds Berlin has more than 3,000 lakes to choose from…


Close to The Circus, the Sommerbad Humboldthain is an outdoor pool in the park across the street from Gesundbrunnen station, just three stops from Rosenthaler Platz on the U-Bahn. Popular with local families, the Sommerbad Humboldthain has a full-length pool for serious swimmers, a diving pool, water slide and kids area, with plenty of space on the grass to lay out your towel and catch some rays. Drinks, snacks and changing rooms available.

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Also in the neighbourhood of Wedding, the Plötzensee lake is a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city. You can only swim from the official bathing beach – which has an entry fee – but in exchange you’ll get places to change, food and drink trucks, beach volleyball and other games, and in recent summers a programme of events long into the night.

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The iconic bathing beach at Wannsee was built over 100 years ago as a place for the workers of the industrial city to relax and cool off in the waters of Wannsee lake, with a huge sandy beach created to that end. It’s massive but that means it is always possible to find a spot. Nearby you can also rent kayaks, stand-up paddle boards and paddle boats if you fancy exploring the lake a little further. 

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North of the city centre and about half an hour from The Circus, Tegel lake is a good option if everything listed so far sounds a little too organised for your tastes. Wander the lakeside trail and you will find a couple of (free) designated swimming areas with lifeguards, but also lots of little coves and beaches that you can make your own. Some of the best boat tours from Berlin also leave from the Greenwich Promenade at the head of the lake.

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Down in the south-east of the city, Müggelsee is Berlin’s biggest lake and is surrounded by hiking and cycling trails, and even a range of “mountains” (low, lumpy hills). There is an official bathing beach here, with changing facilities, food stalls and an entry fee, but explore the lakeshore on the other side of the historic Spreetunnel and you can find loads of places to get into the water with plenty of trees and bushes to change behind.

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The Devil’s Lake – but don’t let the name scare you, unless you are particularly worried about meeting some nude Berliners enjoying the sun. Yes, the Teufelsee is popular with the FKK crowd (nudists to you and me) but it is also a great spot in the Grunewald forest for those who prefer to keep their swimming trunks on. It’s in the shadow of the old American Listening Station, built on a rubble mountain during the cold war, and although there are no real facilities, an ice cream van often shows up to the delight of bathers, clothed or otherwise.

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There are loads of spots to get into the water at the highly popular Schlachtensee, down in the south-west of the city. As well as swimming, the lake has a walking trail all around it, a fine beer garden at one end, and a place where you can rent stand-up paddleboards if you fancy giving that a go. Schlachtensee could be combined with Wannsee or even the Teufelssee if you fancied combining your dips in the lakes with a walk in the woods.

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Tucked away in a residential district of East Berlin, the Strandbad Orankesee is a bit of a hidden highlight. A nice big sandy beach with a waterslide, the bathing area (admission fee) has changing facilities, food and drink stands, beach volleyball, table tennis and a huge grassy area to hang out in. There’s a beer garden on the other side of the lake for when you are done, before you catch the tram back to The Circus.

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