Berlin. The capital Berlin is one of the greenest and most biodiverse cities in Europe. Numerous parks, lakes and forests invite you to take leisurely walks or long day trips. There is something for everyone here. Today I would like to show you one of the most popular destinations for Berliners: the Greenwichpromenade in Alt-Tegel with the adjacent Tegeler Forst. You will learn what you can see here and get the best tips for a successful trip into the countryside.
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Is a Visit to the Greenwichpromenade worthwhile?
The Greenwichpromenade in Berlin is a popular destination all year round. It is located in Alt-Tegel and runs along the eastern shore of Lake Tegel from Borsigdamm to Tegeler Hafenbrücke. Along the promenade and the Tegeler Forst forest to the north, there is plenty of room for pleasure seekers, hiking enthusiasts, water sports enthusiasts, and amateur ornithologists.
From the pier at the Greenwichpromenade, excursion boats start for round trips to the city of Berlin. Those who prefer a more sporty experience, however, can rent a boat or SUP. And if you want to walk a little further, you can pay a visit to the "Dicken Marie" and then hike further into Tegeler Forst to the Baumberge sand dune. Round off your excursion with a visit to the wildlife enclosure or a dip in the fresh water at one of the swimming spots.
Here is info on Getting there.
What are the Highlights on the Greenwichpromenade and in Tegeler Forst?
- Strolling along the Greenwichpromenade Berlin
- Excursion Boats for Round Trips
- Boat Rental
- Bird Watching is possible all Year round
- "Dicke Marie" - the oldest Tree in Berlin
- Wildlife Enclosure with wild Boars, Fallow Deer and Moufflons
- Hiking in the Tegeler Forst with an extensive Network of Trails
- Sand Dune Baumberge
- Bathing Places with sandy Beach
Strolling along the Greenwichpromenade Berlin
It is especially beautiful early in the morning. Then you have the promenade almost to yourself. The city slowly wakes up, the first joggers come and dog owners walk their darlings. If you then look for a sunny spot on a bench and unpack your breakfast, it's a perfect start to the day, isn't it?
You can spend a lot of time on the promenade. There is always something to see and something new to discover. There are numerous benches on the shore from where you can watch the lively hustle and bustle during the day. And if the little hunger comes, then you will also find several Refreshments options or kiosks in the vicinity.
You need something to read while enjoying the sun on the bench? Then check out my Book Recommendations for Trips to the Nature in and around Berlin .
Why you should not feed ducks
Feeding ducks is already banned in Berlin and many other cities. For good reason. Bread is unhealthy for ducks because it contains too much salt and swells in the stomach. Leftover food worsens water quality and increases algae growth. Lying debris also attracts rats and mice. Furthermore, ducks lose their natural shyness towards humans and can be more easily involved in accidents on the road or with dogs.
However, if you do not want to give up feeding and if it is allowed, then please use special waterfowl food. You can get it in pet stores or hardware stores. Do not throw it into the water, but lay it out on the shore and let the ducks pick it up there. Collect any leftovers afterwards to keep the bank clean and avoid attracting rats.
Excursion Boats for Round Trips
The boats of the Stern und Kreis shipping company depart from the jetties on Greenwichpromenade for various tours. The Oberhavelsee tour is considered a classic in northern Berlin. The two-hour trip goes through the rich island world of Lake Tegel to Nieder Neuendorf in the former inner-German border area.
Another popular boat trip is the tour along the Berlin-Spandau shipping canal to the government district.
Directly at the Tegeler See, between the steamer landing stage and the red "Sechserbrücke" is the boat rental Mühl with rowing and pedal boats.
From April 2021, the offer is to be expanded with kayaks and SUPs.
Also for the physical well-being is provided here. At the kiosk "Gordis Schlemmerhafen" you can fortify yourself with snacks, ice cream and hot and cold drinks.
The Greenwichpromenade is one of my favorite places for bird watching in Berlin. This is because there are birds to see here all year round. Various ducks, swans and Canada geese cavort along the promenade itself. Gulls rest on the posts of the jetties or cormorants dry their feathers. There are also numerous nesting boxes hanging on trees along the shore path into Tegeler Forst, providing a nesting place for tits or nuthatches.
"Dicke Marie" - the oldest Tree in Berlin
The "Dicke Marie" is considered the oldest tree in Berlin. Its age is estimated at over 800 years. It is said to have received its name from the Humboldt brothers. It was an allusion to the obese cook in Tegel Palace. The famous poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe also visited this tree in 1778.
Dicke Marie is a pedunculate oak with a height of about 18.5 meters and a trunk circumference of 5.98 meters. This corresponds to a diameter of about 1.9 meters. The tree is a registered natural monument.
The Wildlife Enclosure in Tegeler Forst
The Tegelsee forestry district manages two wildlife enclosures. One for wild boars and another for fallow deer and mouflon. Here you can experience the forest inhabitants at close range. And maybe you are lucky and there have been offspring. On information boards you can also learn interesting facts about the animals.
Hiking in Tegel Forest
Tegeler Forst is a 2,169-hectare forest area with a seemingly endless network of hiking trails. There are wide main paths and side paths that are hardly used. Here you can lose yourself among the trees and let your mind wander. The forest is a protected landscape area and one of the five important Berlin forests.
Tip: Is your cell phone charged? You'll need a map to find your location. Because getting lost is almost part of the game here.
On the Mühlenweg in Tegeler Forst stands the largest tree in Berlin, the Burgsdorff larch. This larch was planted in 1795 and is over 43 meters high. The oldest tree in the city, the Dicke Marie, can be found on Schwarzer Weg near the shore of Lake Tegel.
Sand Dune Baumberge
At the northern edge of the Tegeler Forst lies the Sand Dune Baumberge. The 30 meter high dune is impressive at any time of the year, because so much sand is usually only seen on the beach. A visit is worthwhile at any time of the year.
How was the Dune formed?
The dune formation dates back to the time after the last inland ice sheet melted. At that time, westerly winds blew sand from the Berlin glacial valley towards the east, where dunes accumulated. In the course of time, a closed plant cover formed over the sand. Parts of the Tegel Forest were cleared several times in the course of history and then grew back again. Most recently, parts of the Baumberge were cleared during World War II. The subsequent decades of military use by French Allied troops meant that the sandy area did not grow back over.
The special feature of this Natura 2000 site is its dry grassland communities. In addition to typical dune vegetation with silver and red bunchgrass, sandy heaths with heather and broom also occur here.
Bathing Places at Lake Tegel
Several bathing spots with sandy beaches and excellent bathing water quality invite you to cool off at Lake Tegel. On the northern shore are the Reihenwerder and Scharfenberg bathing spots and the Tegeler See open-air swimming pool. If you are heading south from Greenwichpromenade, the bathing spots Reiswerder and Saatwinkel are on your way.
Please go swimming at the supervised bathing places and protect the shores!
The Tegeler See is with almost 400 ha and a length of about 2.8 km the second largest lake in Berlin. It is not only a popular bathing water and Eldorado for water sports enthusiasts, but also of great importance for the drinking water supply.
On the way from the Alt-Tegel subway station to Greenwichpromenade, you will pass numerous restaurants, ice cream parlors, french fry stands and bakeries. Here you can stock up on provisions, should you not have anything with you. On the lakeside itself there are the Tegeler Seeterassen and the Pavillon am See,which is even closer to the water. There is also a public toilet here.There is another public toilet at the Tegelsee game reserve.
If you walk in the direction of Tegeler Forst, you'll find more places to stop behind the red Six Bridge. I found the beer garden at the Waldhütte restaurant neben der “Dicken Marie”.
If you walk south, there is the Seegarten Tegel just before the Borsighafen.
Getting there by Public Transportation
Take the subway line U 6 to the terminus Alt-Tegel. Then walk about 10 minutes to the shore of the Tegeler See, where the Greenwichpromenade begins.
If you walk north from Greenwichpromenade through Tegeler Forst, you can take bus line 222 from Tegelort back to the Alt Tegel subway station. On weekends, the bus runs every 20 minutes.
All those who walk south from Greenwichpromenade (i.e. not to Tegeler Forst) can also take a look at the Graffiti Skyscrapers in Art Park Tegel. For the return trip, the U6 subway line from Holzhauser Straße or bus 133 and X33 at Bernauer Straße would then be suitable.
Book Recommendations for Trips to the Nature in and around Berlin
You are drawn to the outdoors in the countryside? Then I have a lot of Berlin excursion tips for you. You can order the books with a click on the pictures at Amazon. If you buy a book or another article via an affiliate link, I get a small commission and you help me to keep filling Fernweh-Motive with interesting articles. The product will not be more expensive for you.
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