A hop on/hop off bus tour doesn’t always have to cost a lot of money. A really simple way to make your own sightseeing tour is to combine a tip on the number 100 bus with a day ticket or the Berlin Welcome Card. This way, you can get out whenever you like for the most important attractions, or just stay in the bus and enjoy looking at them in passing. The number 100 bus route was created after the reunification of Germany as the first bus route connecting East and West Berlin thus linking so many of the sightseeing attractions that Berlin has to offer.
From Alexanderplatz to the Reichstag
So let’s begin at Alexanderplatz with the Television Tower as one of the city’s landmarks. Travelling along Karl-Liebknecht-Straße towards the Brandenburg Gate, you pass the Berliner Dom (Berlin Cathedral), Schloßplatz and Museum Island . We recommend that you get out at the “Unter den Linden” bus stop to get a better view of the imposing Brandenburg Gate. And it’s hardly more than a stone’s throw to walk from there to the Reichstag. Take the time and enjoy the view from the glass dome down into the German Parliament assembly room. Please note, however, that touring the dome itself requires prior registration.
Through the Tiergarten
You can then join up with the bus at the “Reichstag/Bundestag” bus stop, and travel past the Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Bellevue Palace towards the Siegessäule (Victory Column) located on the “Großer Stern” (Greater Star) roundabout. The Victory Column was built between 1864 and 1873 on the occasion of the Prussian victory over Denmark in 1864 and is now a listed building. From the top it offers a magnificent view of Tiergarten and the rest of Berlin, but a small word of warning: you first have to climb a total of 285 stairs before you can enjoy the view!
The City West
You then continue the bus tour, which next takes you to Breitscheidplatz and Kurfürstendamm, where the Kaiser Wilhelm Church stands. The original church was built at the end of the 19th century, but was badly damaged in bombing raids in the Second World War. The current ruins probably represent the most well-known monument in Germany against war. In the middle of the 20th century, a new church was built next to the ruins of the old one. The Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church buildings are currently undergoing renovation. Kurfürstendamm is enticing you to go on an extensive shopping tour. KaDeWe, in particular, is well worth visiting. It originally opened in 1907 and is the biggest department store on the European mainland.
Terminus at the Zoo Station
The bus trip comes to an end at the Zoo Station (Berlin Zoologischer Garten), which in 1882 was initially opened for local traffic, and two years later for long-distance trains. The station takes its name from the adjacent Zoologischer Garten (Zoological Garden), which is itself one of the most visited attractions in the city and is home to the most comprehensive collection of species in the world, with over 1,500 animal species and a total of over 17,500 animals in 2011. Of course, you can decide to do the trip in the opposite direction. Start your sightseeing tour at the Zoo Station and finish up at Alexanderplatz.
On top of on the yellow bus
The best seat on the No. 100 bus — for both kids and adults — is naturally at the front on the upper deck, right over the bus driver. There you'll not only get a panoramic view through the enormous windows as you roll past the city's attractions, you'll also feel as if you're driving the bus yourself, right through the centre of Berlin. By the way, up to 3 children between the age of 6 and 14 can also travel free on their parents’ ticket.
And when the bus stops, that's also a bit of an adventure. Do they ever tilt over?, ask the youngsters, wide-eyed with concern. You can spot the local Berlin residents by their indifferent expressions when these situations occur.