Things to do in Potsdam

Our most recommended things to do in Potsdam

Potsdam: City and Castles Tour

1. Potsdam: City and Castles Tour

Experience the beautiful sights and impressive castles of Potsdam on this interesting and entertaining city tour on the trail of "Old Fritz" (Frederick II). Drive through Potsdam's inner city and through the Dutch Quarter to the Glienicker Bridge. Learn more about the "Forbidden City" and walk around the Cecilienhof Castle. Visit Alexandrowka, the colony of traditional Russian wooden houses known as "Little Siberia." Finally, discover the famous terraces of Sanssouci as well as the grave of Frederick II. Walk past beautiful gardens and admire the biggest palace in Potsdam before spending the afternoon as you wish.

Potsdam by Boat: Island Cruise

2. Potsdam by Boat: Island Cruise

On this boat trip, enjoy the beauty of the river landscape around Potsdam with its Havel lakes and picturesque villages surrounded by great scenery. Hop on board, lean back and drive through the village of Caputh, the fishing and vine town of Werder, and pass the Sacrow–Paretz Canal in the north of Potsdam as well as the buildings, castles and manor houses of the Hohenzollerns on the banks of the Havel. See the impressive Caputh Castle, the Marble Palace or Cecilienhof Palace in the New Garden. Cruise past Glienicke park with its casino built by Schinkel, and discover Babelsberg Castle near the river. Finally, your journey takes you to famous Glienicke Bridge. Enjoy the unique panoramic view of Brandenburg's capital.

Potsdam: 1-Day Hop-on Hop-off Bus Ticket

3. Potsdam: 1-Day Hop-on Hop-off Bus Ticket

Explore one of the most beautiful cities in Germany with a 1-day ticket to the hop-on and hop-off bus in Potsdam, capital of the state of Brandenburg. You can jump off at any of the 12 stops along the route, and with buses every 30 minutes (1 hour in winter) discover the shops and stylish alleyways surrounding Brandenburger Strasse and the famous Dutch Quarter. Hop off at Schloss Sanssouci Palace, Friedrich the Great's amazing 18th-Century palace, reminiscent of the grandeur of Versailles, and stroll through the magnificent 600-acre park. Walk through richly furnished chambers, and step out onto flowery terraces and beautiful gardens. Or visit the Raphael Room at The Orangerie, home to dozens of Raphael copies. A full tour lasts 105 minutes and includes entertaining commentary from a live guide. Alternatively, hop-off within a 1-day period at any of the following stops: 1. Luisenplatz 2. Hauptbahnhof (Main Train Station) 3. Filmmuseum 4. Dutch Quarter 5. Glienicker Brucke 6. Marble Palace 7. Cecilienhof 8. Alexandrowka 9. New Palais 10. Orangerie 11. Sanssouci 12. Grand Obelisk

Potsdam: Palace Tour by Boat

4. Potsdam: Palace Tour by Boat

Discover Potsdam from the water and admire the wonderful parks and palaces of the Hohenzollern Dynasty. See the most beautiful sights from the water in just 90 minutes in the morning or the afternoon. Cruise by Babelsberg Park with its imposing palace, see the Flatow Tower and the Hofdamenhaus, then pass under the historically-significant Glienicke Bridge to Jungfernsee. Ride along the former border between east and west and get a glimpse of the impressive palaces and gardens. See the Church of the Redeemer, Sacrow and discover the fairytale castle on Pfaueninsel. Further high points of the tour include the New Garden with its marble palace and the Cecilienhof Palace, where history was made in 1945 with the signing of the Potsdam Agreement.              

Potsdam: Biosphäre Potsdam Entry Ticket

5. Potsdam: Biosphäre Potsdam Entry Ticket

Get entry tickets to the Biosphäre, an indoor tropical botanical garden located in the Volkspark Potsdam. Experience the jungle landscape with over 20,000 beautiful plants and many exotic animals. Begin your journey at the waterfall and continue on intertwined paths to the butterfly house and all the way to the high trail up in the treetops. Witness an hourly thunderstorm with thunder and lightning. Discover colorful orchids, climbing plants, and vines, along with cocoa and coffee plants. See free-flying birds, terrariums with insects and reptiles, bird aviaries, and an underwater world. Experience the magic of the Butterfly House as big, colorful, fluorescent, and camouflaged butterflies float above you.   In the Aquasphere, experience the sea in a whole new way. Wander through the mangroves and dive into the mystical deep sea. It is shaped by darkness, but also by the illuminating colorfulness of the deep sea fish. 

Berlin WelcomeCard: Discounts & Transport Berlin Zones (ABC)

6. Berlin WelcomeCard: Discounts & Transport Berlin Zones (ABC)

The Berlin WelcomeCard, available as a 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6-day option, offers a great, cost-effective means to explore the city in-depth. Travel on public transport in fare zones Berlin ABC and receive exclusive discounts of up to 50% with many participating partners. Whether you're taking a city tour or visiting a museum, theater, or restaurant, when you use the Berlin WelcomeCard, you can see all Berlin has to offer at an amazing price. You'll also receive a pocket-size travel guide with lots of tour suggestions and insider tips. Each WelcomeCard includes free transport for up to 3 children between 6 and 14 years old. Children under the age of 6 generally travel for free. Enjoy discounted rates for the following activities and attractions: • Sightseeing tours • Guided city tours • Bike tours • Boat rides • Various attractions • Museums • Theater/stage performances • Palaces • Restaurants & bars  • Shopping & souvenirs • Fun, sport & relax Visit sights and attractions, such as the following: • AquaDom & SEA LIFE Berlin • Berlin Dungeon • Olympiastadion Berlin (Olympic Stadium) • Berlin Dom  • German Spy Museum • Madame Tussauds Berlin • Legoland Discovery Centre Berlin • Tierpark Berlin • Anne Frank Center • Charlottenburg Palace • Comedy tour Berlin • German Opera • Friedrichstadt-Palast • TimeRide Berlin • TV Tower • Botanical Garden • German Historical Museum, German Museum of Technology • Asisi Panorama „Die Mauer“ • Panoramapunkt • DDR Museum • Fork & Walk Tours Berlin • and many more! And of course, you should not miss the following free sights and locations when visiting Berlin: • Brandenburg Gate & Unter den Linden • Reichstag & German Parliament (pre-booking required) • Checkpoint Charlie • East Side Gallery • Gendarmenmarkt • Kurfürstendamm • Potsdamer Platz & Alexanderplatz • Berlin Wall Memorial

Berlin: Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp and Potsdam Tour

7. Berlin: Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp and Potsdam Tour

Acquire deeper knowledge of World War II history and understand the cruelty of the crimes committed against the victims of Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp with a guided visit. Afterward, explore the ancient Slavic town of Postdam and its royal palaces and gardens. Board your bus at the TV tower at Alexanderplatz and begin your drive to the first stop. Meet your Sachsenhausen Memorial guide and enter the camp to understand the dimensions of the cruelty that took place there. Learn about how jobs were distributed and how the camp was run. After your visit, set off towards Potsdam. Hear the story of how it went from being a Slavic town to becoming a royal residence. See the palaces and gardens where the royal families and their courts ruled and walked. Take a guided walk and enjoy some free time to discover the area on your own.

Berlin WelcomeCard: Museum Island & Public Transport

8. Berlin WelcomeCard: Museum Island & Public Transport

The Berlin WelcomeCard Museum Island allows you to see more of Berlin for less. This is your ticket to the main attractions of the German capital with many tourist highlights, including sightseeing tours, attractions, theaters, restaurants and more, offering discounts of up to 50%. A complimentary guidebook is also included, helping you to make the most of your stay with tour suggestions and handy insider tips. Opt for free transport within zones A and B (Berlin) or A, B, and C (covering Berlin and Potsdam) when you select your Berlin WelcomeCard Museum Island option. Located in the city center on an island in the Spree River, Berlin’s Museum Island boasts a complex of 5 internationally acclaimed museums: the Pergamon Museum, the Old Museum, New Museum, Old National Gallery and Bode Museum. Together they form a world-famous and unique architectural ensemble, which was declared a UNESCO World heritage Site in 1999. With this ticket, you will have free access to them all (one visit per day per museum). See the antique collections of Berlin’s State Museums at the Old Museum and go back to Ancient Egypt at the New Museum. The Bode Museum houses Byzantine art and Oriental sculptures, while at the Pergamon Museum you can see splendid examples of Islamic art.

From Berlin: Potsdam Half-Day Tour

9. From Berlin: Potsdam Half-Day Tour

Explore Potsdam’s main attractions, baroque streets, and elegant castles on a guided walking tour from Berlin. Take the train to the city of kings and Kaisers and learn about the city’s long history and faithful restoration. Marvel at the Rococo style at Sanssouci Palace, the former residence of Frederick the Great, and uncover the hidden secrets of its architecture. Learn how Frederick expanded the city magnificently during his time as a patron of the arts and where he is buried in Sanssouci. Pass the Church of Peace in the palace grounds of Sanssouci Park, which is referred to as "the German Versailles". Continue through elegant streets, manicured gardens, and charming water fountains and discover the Dutch Quarter and the impressive Nauener Gate. Go to Cecilienhof Palace to learn why Potsdam is so important to the history of World War II. Hear how Stalin, Churchill, and Truman divided Germany during the Potsdam Conference in 1945. Arrive lakeside to admire the Marble Palace with its Greek temple ruins and continue along the banks of the Havel River. Here, cross the Glienicke Bridge, better known as the "Bridge of Spies", to see where the CIA and KGB exchanged secret agents.

Potsdam: Self-Guided Walking Tour of City Center

10. Potsdam: Self-Guided Walking Tour of City Center

Discover the best of Potsdam on a self-guided walking tour via your smartphone. Solve riddles and answer questions to learn more about each of the 21 different locations, including Museum Barberini, City Palace, and Friendship Island, while enjoying a tour at your own pace.  You will receive a link for the tour after the booking. Then start your adventure at Long Bridge, the oldest known inner-city Havel crossing. Continue to the city center, visiting Friendship Island and Havel Promenade, pausing at each location to solve a puzzle or learn more about the location. Then it's time to venture to Museum Barberini and into the stunning City Palace, once home to Prussian Kings and German Emperors. Pass through the Dutch Quarter to the Church of St. Peter and Paul and continue solving the prompts on your phone to piece together the lush history of Potsdam.

Frequently asked questions about Potsdam

What top attractions are a must-see in Potsdam?

What are the most popular museums and exhibitions in Potsdam?

Other Sightseeing Options in Potsdam

Want to discover all there is to do in Potsdam? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Potsdam

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 12,228 reviews

It was very easy to find the meet up spot since the guides were wearing lanyards and there was a tour sign. Johnny was an attentive and knowledgeable guide for our trip to Potsdam. He made sure everyone had the right train ticket, knew where to go, and was available for any questions. He had many photos printed to help support his stories. Definitely recommend! My tour was about 4 hours round trip from Berlin (10am to around 2pm).

Chisca was wonderful. My son and I were the only english speaking in the group but Chisca made every effort to pull aside and explain details to us is english. The concentration camp was sad but important to see. Potsdam was beautiful. We actually decided to stay there for dinner and skip the bus ride back!

I bought this public transport ticket, but I didn't have to show it anywhere to travel by bus, tram, or train. I used this to enter in tv-tower, but I had to wait in line for about 30 minutes because there were so many people who had "skip the line" -tickets.

Beautiful day trip to Potsdam! Lots to see and experience in the city and castle! Visually stunning and close to Berlin if you’re looking for an excursion not too far from the city.

Was a very interesting experience, especially recommended for families.