This bike tour of Berlin Kreuzberg starts at the Hotel Prens, Kottbusser Damm 102. From the door of the hotel, turn left down Kottbusser Damm and ride for a kilometre past a diverse range of shops until you arrive at Hermannplatz.
This square received its name in 1885. The large department store on the right side of the square belongs to the district Kreuzberg-Friedrichshain, while the left side belongs to the district Neukölln. On the Hermannplatz there is a daily weekly market. Ride to the next corner and then take a right onto Hasenheide.
On the left side of the street is the 50 hectare Volkspark Hasenheide (People’s Park Hasenheide), a popular recreation area for locals. It is a great place to walk, have a picnic, play a game or just relax. The Jahn Memorial commemorates Friedrich Ludwig Jahn, who began the modern sport of gymnastics two centuries ago in this park. Stay on Hasenheide until you reach Südstern, which you can't miss with its large neo-Gothic Church in between the traffic lanes.
The Kirche am Südstern (Church at Südstern) was built as an Evangelical garrison church for the military and their families who were stationed nearby in the late 19th century. It is now home to a congregation of the Evangelical Free Church. Every Saturday there is a weekly market with regional and organic products.
Insider Tip: Unusual Christian Music
Every Friday from 10.00am–6.00pm, the church opens its book shop. If you've ever wanted to hear Christian punk or heavy metal, this is your chance!
Go around the Südstern roundabout once and then take a right onto Bergmannstraße. As you ride down Bergmannstraße, you will pass the Friedrichswerder cemetery and two other cemeteries on the left-hand side. As you finish passing the cemeteries, you will see straight ahead Marheinekeplatz.
Marheinekeplatz is a small but lovely square dominated by the late nineteenth-century Marheineke Halle. A market with the slogan "organic, fresh and regional" opens here every day. Take a left onto Friesenstraße.
Now ride uphill for a couple of blocks until you reach Fidicinstraße. Take a right and ride for another couple of blocks until you come to the water tower at the corner of Kopischstraße. The water tower was responsible for water supply to the surrounding tenements until the 1950s and now houses a socio-cultural centre.
Turn right onto Kopischstraße and follow the road as it curves to the right and becomes Willibald-Alexis-Straße. Then make an immediate left onto Chamissoplatz, named after poet and naturalist Adelbert von Chamisso. At the end of the square, take a left onto Arndtstraße and stay on it as curves to the right and becomes Nostitzstraße. At the end of the block, turn left onto Bergmannstraße.
Bergmannstraße is Kreuzberg’s vibrant boulevard. Its numerous cafés, restaurants and shops reflect the district’s diversity. Take some time to wander about. When you're ready to get back on the road, head left (west) to Mehringdamm.
Cross Mehringdamm and continue straight ahead onto Kreuzbergstraße. To the left, you will see the Kreuzberg (meaning "cross mountain") which gives the district its name. In a block, just before the Großbeerenstraße intersection to the right, you will see the entrance to Viktoriapark and the path will take you to the summit of the Kreuzberg.
The Kreuzberg is a 66 metre high "mountain" first mentioned in 1290. Today, the Kreuzberg is surrounded by the Viktoriapark with its many green areas, an artificial waterfall and the national monument for the wars of liberation against Napoleon (1813-1815), designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel.
Insider Tip: Biergarten Golgatha
After working up a sweat riding up the Kreuzberg, recharge with a stop in the Biergarten Golgatha, open from April to October.
Coast carefully back down the Kreuzberg and head back to Kreuzbergstraße. Cross the street and head straight ahead onto Großbeerenstraße. Stay on this street for a kilometre until you reach the Tempelhofer Ufer along the Landwehrkanal, where you'll take a right.
Across the canal you can see the elevated tracks of U-Bahn line 1. Ride for a block and then take a right at the next intersection onto Mehringdamm and ride for another block to Blücherstraße. Here you can take a left or you might want to check out:
Insider Tip: Currywurst at Curry 36
Want to try what might be the most famous currywurst in Berlin? About two blocks further down Mehringdamm you can get yourself a treat at Curry 36, on the right hand side of the road.
(If you've gone to Curry 36, go back to Blücherstraße and take a right.) You will ride for two long blocks past the rear of the American Memorial Library to the left and then past the red brick Heilig-Kreuz-Kirche. Take a left onto Brachvogelstraße, cross the bridge over the Landwehrkanal and then turn immediately onto the path running along the canal.
Continue riding along the canal. To your left you will see the Sommerbad Kreuzberg, also called the Prinzenbad. Cross Prinzenstraße and you will come upon the Statthaus Böcklerpark, a socio-cultural centre.
Continue riding along the path until you arrive at the Admiralbrücke. Cross the bridge and then turn immediately to the left onto Planufer.
Stay along the canal, cross Kottbusser Damm and then continue straight onto Maybachufer. A large market is held here on Tuesdays and Fridays, with many Turkish vendors.
Ride to the next bridge, cross it and then take an immediate right along the Paul-Lincke-Ufer. Stay on this street for four blocks until the road takes a sharp left. Follow the curve, but take a right at the next opportunity into the park on the right and cross the park until you come to the Görlitzer Ufer.
Take a left onto Wiener Straße and cycle through Görlitzer Park, a green space that was formerly the Görlitz rail terminal. After you leave the edge of the park, it's just another block until you come upon the elevated tracks. Cross under them and continue onto Oranienstraße.
Stay on Oranienstraße. Ride through Heinrichplatz, Oranienplatz, Moritzplatz and past the Federal Printing Office, where banknotes, stamps and IDs are printed. On the right side you see the golden Axel Springer building and a few metres further on the left side is the headquarters of taz, a left-leaning German daily. As you pass the Springer building, the road curves to the left and becomes Rudi-Dutschke-Straße. Stay on this street for three blocks until you come to Friedrichstraße.
To the right on Friedrichstraße, about half a block down, you will see Checkpoint Charlie, the former border crossing point between East and West Berlin for allied troops and diplomats. Turn around and ride down Friedrichstraße back towards the Oranienstraße.
Continue straight on Friedrichstraße, through the ring-shaped building on Mehringplatz until you come to the Hallesches Tor U-Bahn station. Ride under the elevated tracks and take a left onto Waterloo-Ufer. Straight ahead is the front side of the American Memorial Library seen earlier. Ride to the next corner and then take a right onto Zossener Straße.
Continue on Zossener Straße for five blocks until you arrive at Gneisenaustraße. Take a left. Here you can ride down the green median strip until you arrive at Südstern again. Ride around the Südstern and continue on Hasenheide until you arrive at Hermannplatz.
Take a left onto Hermannplatz and then continue straight ahead onto Kottbusser Damm (caution at Sonnenallee intersection) and ride until you are back at house number 102. You've now reached the end of the tour.