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Warnemunde to Berlin Train

I am taking the Baltic Cruise next September and am trying to figure out the best shore excursions for me.

First question I have is about the Port at Warnemunde. I am thinking of taking the excursion to Berlin. I love trains but it sounds like a long trek.

What is the train trip like? I am aware that there is no air conditioning but that should not be a problem the third week of September. I think that I will be able to sleep going and coming back.

Question: Is the trip going to Berlin pretty and or interesting? What are the morning snacks like and is there anything to eat on the train returning to port?

Posted by
713 posts

You have the choice between train and bus.

From: Warnemünde Werft
To: Berlin (either Hbf main station, Friedrichstrasse or Alexanderplatz, depends on your plans)

By train you will need to switch at Rostock Hbf where you can buy something to eat and drink. You will easily find a bakery with bread rolls based sandwiches. Same at all stations in Berlin where you start your way back. Have some Euro in cash available. Personal tip: If you start your way back from Berlin Hbf stop at Kaffee Einstein; they have sandwiches made of dark wholemeal bread. Coffee is good there, too.

it sounds like a long trek ... Is the trip going to Berlin pretty and or interesting?

It's a 3-hour trip through flat green countryside. So, nice for a sleep or let the landscape just passing by.

Posted by
815 posts

To make it short: forget Berlin. It takes forever to get there, and Berlin is huge and spread out, and wasn't built to impress at first sight like Paris.
It makes much more sense to explore the shore, which is the most popular German holiday destination.... and not just because of the great beaches and beautiful nature, but also because of the preserved historic towns, quaint fishermens villages, medieval churches and posh 19th century seaside resorts.

There is a highly rated company called Friends of Dave, which offers very interesting tours in the area:
https://www.tripadvisor.com/AttractionReview-g187364-d1647222-Reviews-FriendsofDaveTours-WarnemundeRostockMecklenburgWestPomerania.html#REVIEWS
IMHO the best one is the "Mega Mecklenburg Tour", which offers a bit of everything: medieval Hanseatic town, fairytale castle, seaside resort, and German dinner + cafe and cake.

It's also possible to do a trip on your own, to Schwerin, Wismar or Stralsund, which would cost you less than 30€ for two. Or you could see the minster of Bad Doberan, one of the most beautiful churches of the Baltics, and take a nostalgic steam train, which crosses the centre of Bad Doberan, to the first seaside resort on the continent.

Posted by
713 posts

I think it would be necessary to invite you, Martin, to Berlin. I fully disagree on your Berlin statement.

Berlin has the same potential for immediate "wow" than Paris. And yes, Berlin is huge but you can have easily have an immediate great time in Berlin: with a 5 kilometres walk from Hbf to Alexanderplatz you can cover 7 of Berlin's recommended top 10 plus piece of Berlin Wall and back 3 stations by public trains (AB Short trip ticket). Alternatively take a HoHo bus tour from / to Hbf and let yourself getting around.

Posted by
11348 posts

Hi,

You have to catch the train in Rostock for Berlin. If you arrive in Berlin Hbf by noon or a bit afterwards at the latest, the trip to Berlin is certainly doable,(I would it), it is less than 3 hrs between Rostock and Berlin... it's a direct connection.

Better to get the snacks at Rostock Hbf. As to the scenery, I find it very interesting in north eastern Germany with its massive birch tree forests, which you don't see in the west, and flat terrain...all part of the North German Plain, (Norddeutsche Ebene).

From Berlin Hbf you can take the S-Bahn to Bahnhof Friedrichstrasse, a nice place to have lunch, and walk over to the Brandenburg Gate and Pariser Platz.

Or, going with the S-Bahn east to Alexanderplatz and beyond.

Or, you can take the U-Bahn from Hbf to the Brandenburg Gate.

Posted by
74 posts

Thank you for your responses.

The cruise that I signed up for includes $100 off of shore excursions so I will probably stay with Norwegian Cruise Line excursions.

NCL books a luxury train to Berlin and so we go straight from the port to Berlin where we transfer to motorcoaches for our tour. The shore excursion includes a snack on the train but they do not tell you what the snack is.

I would be touring Berlin by motorcoach and would probably love Berlin from what I have read of the tour but the three hour trek going to Berlin and three hours returning to the port exhausts me just thinking about it.

I have been considering taking a shore excursion closer to the port and I have read the wonderful reviews about Friends of Dave but, as I have said, my amenities include $100 off of my shore excursions so I will probably stay with NCL.

I love some of the excursions from Warnemunde but Berlin seems to be the highlight.

My cruise is not until September so I have plenty of time to mull it over.

Posted by
74 posts

Martin,

I checked The Friends of Dave link you posted and looked at the excursion you recommended. it sounds great but I am a senior citizen and feel that it would be a little too much for me. I need an excursion that is less demanding physically.

NCL offers some good excursions but not quite a full day like Dave does. However,as I also said, I get $100 off of any shore excursion as an amenity. NCL offers day excursions to all the places that you recommended but i have to make a choice. I loved the google maps.

Posted by
713 posts

Phil, what is the price for NCL excurion to Berlin?

Pretty sure tha the 100 bucks off is still far over than doing yourself a trip :-)

Posted by
74 posts

MarkK,
The excursion that I am considering costs about $305 minus the $100 so it will cost me $205. This includes a direct train to Berlin with snack. I get a 3 hour motorcoach tour of Berlin and then I am dropped off at Gendarmenmarkt Square to do my own thing for the next 3 hours. A motorcoach will then take me back to the train station for the trip back to the port.

There is another one. Same train and same snack but when you get to Berlin, you get a motorcoach tour of the top 10 attractions of Berlin with some picture taking opportunities. This one is a full six hours long and you get lunch.

This one costs about $355 and minus my $100 would cost me about $255. There are two reviews and they are both on the negative side. One person said it was exhausting and demanding because you go - go - go. The other said that you only see Berlin from the bus.

My situation is that I am going to be 74 years old and I can not walk or stand long periods of time. I can do some walking but .... so it would be best to go through NCL

Posted by
713 posts

Well, it's not my money but the DIY version will save more than 50%, even more if you find people who join the train ride. With a HoHo bus tour you will get around without walking yourself, you can directly enter the bus round tour near Berlin Hbf (main station).

1 day Bahn ticket: 44 EUR (valid from 9 am).
Hop-on-hop-off bus tour: 22 EUR
Total: 66 EUR plus food & beverages on your choice.

Feel free to choose other bus tour provider.

Whatever you do, have fun and enjoy Berlin in late summer.

Posted by
1312 posts

NCL books a luxury train to Berlin

That's not a luxury train, it's a normal local (!) train and not even a modern one (no AC, contrary to the regular RE from Rostock to Berlin). +) Just google for "Sonderzug 13290" to see what it is like. I'd do what MarkK recommends - doing it on your one with an QDL train ticket.

+) BTW, it's described as a "standard train" on the NCL website.

Posted by
74 posts

sla 019

you are right. I checked the shore excursion and the train is described as "exclusively chartered standard train" . I think that I was fooled by "exclusively chartered" but I may have heard the words luxury used somewhere else.

Thank you for your feedback.

Posted by
1 posts

I am looking at taking the train to Berlin - Alexanderplatz to spend more time after our cruise. Is it very hard to navigate to there? Thanks. Am trying very hard to pack light for both of us.

Posted by
1312 posts

It's easy. Assuming your point of departure is Warnemünde you will take the S-Bahn to Rostock, then a RE to Berlin Hbf and finally a S-Bahn to the Alexanderplatz. Look up details at www.bahn.com. There are also several Flixbuses per day from Warnemünde to different destinations in Berlin (www.flixbus.com).

Posted by
11348 posts

Not hard to navigate Berlin going laterally.

Get to Berlin Hbf, then to the S-Bahn platforms, (16, 17, 18?), then know which lines are gong east or west by the termini...Ahrensfelde, Wartenburg, Strausberg, Eckner are some of those termini in the east.

All the lines from Berlin Hbf will stop at Alexanderplatz, they then deviate after that or after Ostbahnhof.

I would go to Berlin from Warnemunde if only for the day trip...easy, if you know what you're doing and want to track down.

Posted by
713 posts

It is track 15 on upper platform level, Fred :-) Chapeau, close to becoming a city guide.

And I agree that it is very easy, also enough people to answer question where to head to.

Posted by
11348 posts

@ Markk....Thanks for exact information. When I am in Hbf, I just know how to get to the S-Bahn platforms.

Posted by
713 posts

It was seriously meant positive - my last time in SF area is too long ago to know such details. I think it was 2006 meeting people from Apple.

Posted by
3817 posts

I would point out that the "expensive" excursion from the cruise company assures that the ship will WAIT for passengers if the train (or something else) is delayed. That is not the case for self-done or private excursions - in this case, with six or more hours of public transportation. You also have to consider a subway or tram delay in getting back to your self-guided train departure.

Having been to Berlin (I mean, slept there) four times, my opinion is that even five hours touring is not worth six hours (plus or minus) of travel. This is common problem with Baltic cruises. It amounts to misleading advertising.

Posted by
74 posts

Thank you all for adding to my posting and for the information that you have given me.

After a lot of research, I decided to forego the excursion to Berlin and take the one to Schwerin and the Schwerin castle.

I am sad to miss Berlin but I believe that the excursion would be too much for me. Past cruisers have used words like grueling to describe this excursion even though they loved what they saw of Berlin.

Taking a train 2 1/2 to 3 hours to take a 6 hour motor coach tour and then taking the train back to the ship exhausts me just thinking about it and reading about it.

Posted by
11348 posts

Hi,

Good, you can plan on Berlin the next time around. Schwerin is a good choice in lieu of Berlin, obviously closer to Rostock Hbf.

The town is interesting, and the famous Schloss is well worth your time, captivating too.

Keep in mind that Schwerin was part of Mecklenburg, of which there were two, ie duchies. This one you're going to is the former Mecklenburg-Schwerin.

In 2015 I went by bus from Schwerin to Ludwigslust, a town well known for its Schloss too since this Schloss was portrayed on the 90 cent Euro stamp; this bus went through a good deal of Schwerin...interesting architecture...before arriving in Ludwigslust.