Hiking in a nature reserve

In search of beaver tracks

Nibbled tree trunks, dams, paw prints in the muddy ground…along the Briese it’s teeming with beavers.

The Briese is a just 17km long tributary of the Havel in the north of Berlin. It rises in the Wandlitzer See, then flows through the Briesewald and finally flows into the Havel near Hohen Neuendorf.

The landscape in this beautiful alder swamp forest never gets boring at any time of the year. You can walk along the banks on both sides. The Briesetal is also ideal for bicycle tours.

From Birkenwerder you first walk through pine forests and then past the Briesesee, in which you can even swim. The route then continues along the Briese shore, which is very boggy in places. In the past, peat was cut in the area. Today, a huge beaver dam dams up the Briese at one point to form a small lake with countless dead trees. Keep an eye out for herons, ducks and other waterfowl.

Rest at the Helene Springs

Along the river, in the warmer months, countless dragonflies fly in beautifully shimmering colors. And with a little patience, you may even see a grass snake or two gliding through the water. A perfect place for a rest are footbridges at the Helene springs, which supply the Briese with fresh water at this point.

Along the Briese there are several bridges like the Schlagbrücke and the Hubertusbrücke with a small resting place very close to the Helene Springs. The bridges allow you to make a kind of circular walk – try it, the Briese valley looks completely different when seen from the other bank !

How to get there and further info

For a journey by public transport, S Birkenwerder or S Borgsdorf are very well suited as starting points for a walk or a bike tour.

In Birkenwerder you will also find the Waldschule Briesetal e.V., which offers a wide variety of adventure formats in the forest.

Last but not least a hint: In the summer months countless mosquitoes buzz in huge swarms in the Briesetal!