Tickets for the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin are reasonably cheap with good combination deals — buy museum tickets and reserve online to save even more.
Tickets for the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (State Museums) are very reasonably priced for the quality and quantity of artworks and cultural objects on display. The most expensive museum is €14 but most are cheaper and many combination deals are available — €19 includes all Museum Island venues for the day. Tickets are sold for individual museums (or special temporary exhibitions) but the area combination tickets are especially good value for money and always a great savings deal when seeing more than one museum on a single day. These national museums are included on the Berlin Museums Pass and some Berlin Welcome Cards. Buy tickets online from GetYourGuide and make free time-slot reservations where required.
All Berlin state museums are open in 2023. Time-slot reservations are essential only for the Alte Nationalgalerie, Gemäldegalerie, Neue Nationalgalerie, Neues Museum, Pergamon Museum (closed from October 2023 to 2027!), and Das Panorama. Timeslots are currently released only around four weeks in advance. Buy tickets and make reservations online at GetYourGuide or at SMB. Online tickets for museums without timeslot reservations are skip-the-line — go directly to the entrance to scan the ticket. Many multiple-museum tickets and passes are again accepted. The 3-day Berlin Museum Pass is excellent value.
See Update for Opening Hours of the Berlin State Museums (2023) for the latest information.
Ticket Options for the Berlin State Museums
Tickets for the Berlin State Museums are at first glance fairly complicated. Several combination tickets are sold and the museums are also included in tourist museum passes.
Tickets are generally available for special temporary exhibitions, for an individual museum, for the whole area the museum is in, and for all museums.
The area tickets are generally good value and are only marginally more expensive than a single museum ticket. The museum ticket almost always includes admission to temporary exhibitions, although sometimes it is extra, or a separate cheaper ticket is available for the temporary exhibition only.
Admission to the Berlin State Museums is free for children up to 18 years old but they need a ticket too so include children when buying tickets or making time-slot reservations. Students usually pay the reduced (ermäßigt) half-price rate.
All state museums, as well as most other museums in Berlin, are free on the first Sunday of the month. Timeslot reservations may still be needed for the top museums and exhibitions.
All visitors may buy tickets online from the museums but this option requires registration or a surprising amount of personal data. Buying from GetYourGuide is a lot simpler, the same price, valid as a mobile phone ticket, and has better cancelation conditions. Go directly to the gallery entrance to scan the QR or bar codes. The online reservation system for free time-slot tickets where required may also be used for child tickets and annual pass holders.
Note that day tickets are valid for the calendar day, irrespective of the time of purchase. It is, therefore, best to buy museum tickets early morning and avoid Mondays when only the Humboldt Forum museums are open. (The Pergamonmuseum and Neues Museum are currently not open on Mondays.)
See Update for Opening Hours of the Berlin State Museums — free time-slot ticket reservations are essential only for the most popular museums but sensible for any museum that offers this skip-the-line option.
Area Tickets for the Berlin State Museums and Galleries
See Updated Opening Hours of the Berlin State Museums. Time-slot reservations are essential only for the Alte Nationalgalerie, Neue Nationalgalerie, Neues Museum, Pergamon Museum, and Das Panorama. (Also for the Gemäldegalerie when particularly popular exhibitions are staged.)
Museumsinsel Berlin / Museum Island
The area day ticket for all museums on Museum Island is €19. Many museums require time-slot admissions, if not included in the ticket, e.g. Museum Pass users or under 18s, make free reservations online at SMB Shop.
Ticket prices for the individual museums are as follows — special exhibitions may add a small surcharge:
- €12 – Alte Nationalgalerie / Old National Gallery (buy from Get Your Guide)
- €10 – Altes Museum / Old Museum (buy from Get Your Guide)
- €12 – Bode Museum (buy from Get Your Guide)
- €12 – Neues Museum / New Museum (buy from Get Your Guide)
- €12 – Pergamonmuseum / Pergamon Museum (buy from Get Your Guide)
- €12 – Pergamon Das Panorama Exhibition (buy from Get Your Guide)
James-Simon-Galerie — depends on the special exhibition.
Admission to the Friedrichwerdersche Kirche with its display of 19th-century sculptures is free and no tickets required.
Humboldt Forum (Berliner Schloss)
Prices for the museums and exhibitions in the Humboldt Forum (Berlin Schloss) are set individually and are not included in the Museuminsel Area Ticket but usually are covered by the Berlin Museum Pass.
Entry into the courtyards of the building is free as is admission to some of the exhibitions. Admission to the Etnologisches Museum / Ethnological Museum and Museum für Asiatische Kunst / Museum for Asian Art is currently still free and not requiring time-slot reservations.
Kulturforum / Cultural Forum
The area day ticket for all museums in the Kulturforum is €18. Admission is sometimes charged for temporary exhibitions in the library and Kupferstichkabinett.
- €8 – Gemäldegalerie / Paintings Gallery (Old Masters) (buy from Tiqets). Sometimes surcharges apply for top temporary exhibitions. (Usually €10 but parts of the museum are closed until late 2023.)
- €8 – Kunstgewerbemuseum / Museum of Decorative Arts (buy from Tiqets).
- €6 (depending on the exhibition) – Kupferstichkabinett / Museum of Prints and Drawings.
- €6 (depending on the exhibition) – Kunstbibliothek / Art Library (buy from Tiqets).
- €14 — Neue Nationalgalerie / New National Gallery — tickets available from Get Your Guide, surcharges are sometimes added for special exhibitions.
- €6 – Musikinstrumenten-Museum / Musical Instruments (not part of the SMK but included in the Kulturforum ticket).
Other Berlin State Museums
Tickets for the other Berlin State Museums are sold mostly individually but the Berlin Museum Pass is valid at all of these museums:
- Around €14 (depending on the temporary exhibitions) – to the Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin / Museum of Contemporary Art in the Hamburg Station in Berlin (buy from Get Your Guide). Some temporary exhibitions may be seen individually for less.
- €8 – Museum Europäischer Kulturen / Museum of European Cultures in Dahlem (buy from Tiqets).
- €10 – Sammlung Scharf-Gerstenburg near Schloss Charlottenburg (buy from Tiqets). (The Museum Berggruen is closed until 2025.)
- €10 – admission to the Museum für Fotografie / Photography Museum behind the Zoologischer Garten station (buy from Tiqets).
- €6 – Schloss Köpenick Palace.
The Museum Pass and Welcome Card Berlin
The Museum Pass Berlin is sold by Visit Berlin – the tourist information office for €29 and is valid for entry into more than 30 museums in Berlin on three consecutive days. These museums include all Berlin State Museums, the German History Museum (closed until at least 2024), and Technology Museum but unfortunately not the popular Haus am Checkpoint Charlie or DDR museums. The pass is available from any participating museum, tourist office, and some hotels.
The Berlin Welcome Card Museum Island pass is a further option sold by the tourist office. This 72-h pass includes public transportation, free admission to the permanent collections of the Museum Island museums, and further discounts at other attractions. It currently costs €53 in the AB transportation region version – the ABC version that includes Potsdam, Schönefeld Airport and Oranienburg is hardly more expensive.
Annual Passes for the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
Annual member passes (Jahreskarten) are good options for residents of Berlin or frequent visitors. It comes in three versions:
- €100 – Classic Plus: valid for all museum and temporary exhibitions at all times, priority admission even without time-slot reservations.
- €50 – Classic: valid for all permanent exhibitions at all times. Major temporary exhibitions may have a surcharge. Free time-slot reservations.
- €25 – Basic: valid for all permanent exhibitions at off-peak times, i.e. enter after 4 pm (3 pm at Dahlem and Schloss Köpenick) on weekdays and between 11 am and 1 pm on weekends and vacation days. Major temporary exhibitions have a surcharge. Free time-slot reservations.
These annual passes may only be bought at the following museums: Altes Museum, Kulturforum central ticket desk, Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Fotografie, Museum Berggruen, Dahlem Museums, Neues Museum, and Schloss Köpenick.
More on the Berlin State Museums (Staatliche Museen zu Berlin):
Note: Most Berlin museums and similar sights are open in 2023. Timeslot reservations are essential for only the Alte Nationalgalerie, Gemäldegalerie, Neue Nationalgalerie, Neues Museum, Pergamon Museum (closed from 23 Oct 2023 until 2027!), and Das Panorama. Timeslots are released only around four weeks in advance. Tickets are available from GetYourGuide that seem to have timeslots available when SMB has already sold out — many passes or multi-museum tickets are again available. Individual museum ticket prices range from €6 to €14 (€20 for special exhibitions). Online tickets are skip-the-line — go directly to the gallery entrance to scan the code.
For more general information on the Berlin State Museums:
- Top National Museums and Galleries in Berlin (brief overview)
- Berlin State Museums: What Is Seen Where? (a short description of the collections in the different museums)
- Opening Hours of Berlin State Museums (2023).
- Ticket Prices for Berlin State Museums (prices for museums, temporary exhibitions, combination tickets, online time-slot reservations). Buying online from GetYourGuide is a lot simpler and costs the same as the official museum website. Timeslot reservations are essential for the most popular museums!
- Save with the Berlin Museum Pass – 30 museums (including all the SMB museums) in three days for €32 – a fantastic savings deal.
- Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (official website in German & English).
News & Temporary Exhibitions:
- 2024: Frans Hals in the Gemäldegalerie
- Top Special Temporary Exhibitions in 2023 — overview, in the Kulturforum, in the Neue Nationalgalerie, on Museum Island, and the Museum of Photography.
- Both the Ethnological and Asian Art museums in the Humboldt Forum (Berlin Schloss) are now fully open — admission to both is still free and currently without the need to book a timeslot.
- The Gemäldegallerie is partly closed until September 2023 but at least 75% is open at any given time.
- The Pergamon Museum will be closed completely from 23 October 2023 and partly reopen only in spring 2027 (with the rest to follow by the mid to late 2030s).
More Museum Reviews and Museum-Specific Information:
- Alte Nationalgalerie with Caspar David Friedrich paintings.
- Altes Museum with Greek, Etruscan, and Roman art.
- Ethnological and Asian Art Museums in the Humboldtforum.
- Friedrichswerdersche Kirche (free admission) with a collection of 19th-century German sculptures.
- Gemäldegalerie with its collection of German and Dutch Old Masters and Italian paintings.
- Kunstgewerbemuseum (Decorative Arts).
- Musical Instruments Museum near the Berliner Philharmonie.
- Neue Nationalgalerie with early 20th-century art and Alexander Calder exhibitions.
- Neues Museum with bust of Nefertiti.
- Pergamon Museum with Ishtar Gate — the whole Pergamonmuseum will be closed from 23 October 2023 until 2027.
- Pergamon Museum Panorama Exhibition with Asisi panoramic painting and Greek statues.
- Photography — Helmut Newton collection and historic photos.
Previous Temporary Exhibitions:
- Top Special Temporary Exhibitions in 2022 — overview, in the Kulturforum (David Hockney), in the Neue Nationalgalerie, on Museumsinsel, Hamburger Bahnhof contemporary art, and the Museum of Photography.
- Top Special Temporary Exhibitions in 2021 — including the reopening of the Neue Nationalgalerie, as well as the Ethnological and Asian Art Museums in the Humboldt Forum.
- Top Special Exhibitions in 2020: Highlights, in Kulturforum, on Museum Island, in the Hamburger Bahnhof, smaller museums, and the opening of the Humboldt Forum in December.