From Amsterdam to Berlin

From lowering your carbon footprint to skipping the queues at airport security and avoiding Berlin’s uninspiring airports, the advantages to train travel between Amsterdam and Berlin are countless. Here are our top 5 reasons why you should forget flying and board the train.

Amsterdam → Berlin

By train
6 ¼ hours travel time City – City
6 direct Intercity trains daily
from 39,90 Euro per person incl. baggage
27,1 kg CO2-emissions
1 % of your personal yearly climate budget of 2.300 kg CO2

By plane
5 hours travel time City – City
11 connections daily
from around 50 Euro per person incl. 1 piece of baggage
122,3 kg CO2-emissions
5 % of your personal yearly climate budget of 2.300 CO2

The intercity train Amsterdam - Berlin at Amsterdam Central Station
The Intercity train to Berlin at Amsterdam Central station

1. Find fantastic fares

With fares as low as €39.90 one way (when booked in advance) from any station in the Netherlands to Berlin and from any station in Germany to Amsterdam, rail travel is now remarkably affordable. For under €80, you can depart from and return to your home station – avoiding all airline add-ons, transfer costs and inflated airport price tags. This means that taking the train saves you time and money. For further discounts, consider getting Deutsche Bahn’s BahnCard 25, which gives you 25% off your ticket. First class saver fares are also available and start at €59.90. 

2. Have a beer (or two) in the bistro…

Sit back and relax as you grab a bite to eat in the train’s comfy on-board bistro – perhaps a warm croissant, a soup or some pasta with a glass of red wine. All Intercity trains between Amsterdam and Berlin have a restaurant car which offers breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as a selection of drinks and snacks. Enjoy a coffee from a real mug or a beer served directly from the tap. Best of all, your meals are served on real plates with real cutlery, so there’s no waste from the plastic silverware that airlines use!

3. …and take unlimited luggage and drinks

Unlike airlines, train companies don’t restrict the amount of luggage you can take, don’t impose fines on those carrying overweight bags and allow you to take as many liquids as you like. This added flexibility means that you can bring as much you want or even take your own drinks with you. Bring your own bottle of wine and make the journey a memorable one.

4. Get a feel for the countries

The Amsterdam–Berlin route may not be the world’s most scenic, but there are still plenty of things to see from your train window…

Naardermeer

Don’t miss the meadows and marshes of this protected nature reserve, which stretch out like an oasis between the suburbs of Amsterdam and the town of Hilversum.

De Veluwe

Between Amersfoort and Amersfoort you pass through the largest wooded habitat in the Netherlands. Enjoy views of thick forests, quaint villages and other highlights as you cross the River IJssel in Deventer.

Emperor William Monument

Try to spot this colossal structure standing on a hill between Bad Oeynhausen and Minden. The site, which was built in 1896 in honour of the nation’s first emperor, is one of Germany’s major national monuments.

Hannover

This city is full of surprises for you to discover, including the world-famous Royal Gardens of Herrenhausen. So if your ticket is flexible, hop off and get exploring. We’ve listed some of Hannover’s best spots for you.

Volkswagen factories at Wolfsburg

It’s here, near Fallersleben, that the first Volkswagen factory was opened in the late 1930s and from where the legendary German car went on to take the world by storm. Volkswagen’s headquarters are also an iconic sight just north of Wolfsburg station.

Between Wolfsburg and Berlin (through die Altmark)

Enjoy enchanting views of pure, uninterrupted countryside. After Stendal (direction Berlin) you pass the mighty Elbe, one of central Europe’s longest rivers, with impressive flood banks. In spring and summer, the bright yellows of the rapeseed fields also make for a wonderful sight.


5. Arrive in style in the heart of the city

There is no better way to arrive in a city than by train, and this is especially true of Berlin. The Intercity from Amsterdam runs along the monumental Berlin Stadtbahn, a stretch of railway built mostly on brick stone arches dating from 1878. It runs for 11.2 km from Charlottenburg S-Bahn station to Berlin Ostbahnhof, crossing the historical city centre from West to East and passing several major landmarks, including Berlin Zoo, the war-damaged Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, the Siegesäule (or Victory Column), the Reichstag and the Berliner Dom before finally crossing the Spree and pulling into Berlin Ostbahnhof, the final destination of the IC Amsterdam–Berlin.

Spree river and panorma at Berlin Hauptbahnhof, Berlin
Arrive in the heart of the city, like here at Berlin Hauptbahnhof

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Bart Giepmans
Written by Bart Giepmans
Bart practically grew up on a train and has been discovering Europe by rail since his childhood. Stints at the Dutch and German Railways and at Interrail have turned him into an ardent ambassador for train travel. Bart has a passion for history and Alpine trails and is commuting regularly between Utrecht and Berlin.

Edited by: William Simpson.