Sightseeing in Berlin wasn’t our only plan during the short trip in May. One of the main goals was also going to Tropical Islands water park – the largest indoor water park in the world, that is home to the biggest indoor rain forest in the world, a beach, many tropical plants and a number of swimming pools, bars and restaurants. This place is a perfect get away during cold months in Northern Europe. The place is ideal for visiting with kids, and you can stay overnight for an even better experience.
What is Tropical Islands water park
The park is located in the former Brand-Briesen Airfield, in a former airship hangar. The structure is huge! It can fit up to 8200 visitors per day, although you hardly feel there are lots of people inside. The whole area is divided into different areas:
- The Tropical Village with traditional looking buildings from Thailand, Borneo, Samoa and Bali.
- The Rainforest, featuring 50,000 plants and 600 different species
- The Tropical Sea – huge pool (140 metres) which is relatively shallow (1.35 metres) and a coastline of 200 meters long sandy beach.
- The Bali Lagoon, another shallow pool with water slides, a current canal and whirlpools.
- The Amazonia – perfect for summer months, a huge outdoor area with two large pools, a sunbathing area and much more.
How to get there
Tropical Islands water park is located around 60 km from Berlin city and is easily reached by public transport or rental car. We went there by train from Alexanderplatz by regional train (direction Cottbus). In order to get there, you need to purchase Berlin-Brandenburg ticket (just the Berlin ABC ticket is not enough). For groups of friends it is quite inexpensive – the day ticket only costs 29€ and can be used by up to 5 people in all Berlin and Brandenburg areas.
You need to ride the train until Brand/Tropical islands station, where a local free transfer shuttle will be waiting for you and transfer you to the Tropical Islands resort. It’s very convenient and easy, the trains arrive and depart every 20-30 minutes. You can expect to spend the whole day in the resort!
Prices and where to buy tickets
We booked our tickets online and took advantage of early bird discounts. The price for two adults and a 9-year-old was 100€, which is fair, considering how cool and unique this water park is. Your one day entrance ticket is valid until midnight. Our tip: go there on Sunday, as most of Berlin is closed (shops). They also offer discounts for overnight stays on Sundays.
The prices in the park are far from cheap. A lunch for three of us (simple bratwurst with fries and a drink) cost us around 45€, yogurt ice cream 3€ per serving, drinks at least 2-3€. As the air is very hot and humid, you constantly feel thirsty. Tropical Islands has made it very easy in terms of payment – there is no cash inside, you use with your bracelet to purchase food and drinks and later, upon departure, pay it all at once at the gates.
Things to do in Tropical Islands water park
Once you enter the area, the choice is quite large. Even to walk around the whole dome will take you at least half an hour. There are two major pools – one huge “sea” and a smaller, more private lagoon. The little one went for the slides and so did I. I must admit, children slides are quite fast for me already, so I didn’t even attempt to go the the adult slides. It took me couple of rounds to get slightly nauseous, so for the rest of the day I mostly observed others on the slides.
The “sea” and the “lagoon”, although impressive, were still a little unrealistic for me. It was nice to feel real sand between my toes, but other than that it wasn’t a real “beach” experience. We really enjoyed walking though the rain forest though – truly impressive and you might forget for a moment where you are. The temperatures inside are always around 26C and the air is humid. There were some very cool attractions, such as hot air balloon, minigolf, diving courses and various shows taking place from time to time.
Outside area looked very nice, but sadly it was very cold outside on that day (13C). Although the water is heated, you can’t stay out for too long.
For a truly unique experience the park offers overnight possibilities. The prices start from 57€/person in a tent and 90€/person in an air conditioned room. For families with children this may be a good idea, as the houses are very cute and stylish, the kids will love it for sure. On the other hand, sleeping in a tent may not be the best idea because of the hot and humid air. At sunset, there is a lazer show at the “beach”. We didn’t stay long enough to see it though, as it was getting late and we were too tired.
Tropical Islands is a great place to visit, regardless if you have kids or not. I assume it is best during winter months as it may give you a little feel of the real tropics and help to relax. It’s not a quiet place, kids running around, screaming, water flushing everywhere. Even if water slides is not your thing, you will probably find something you like here. If you only have few days in Berlin, its probably not worth it, because you can spend your time in a much better way.