Amsterdam to Berlin by Train via Hilversum
Rail travel between Amsterdam and Berlin is very stress free but since 2008 it does require a change of train if you travel to/from Amsterdam Centraal station. This is because all services to Berlin now depart from Schiphol Airport station and call at Amsterdam Zuid instead.
There are different options available depending on where in Amsterdam you would like to leave from. The simplest journey is made from Amsterdam Zuid, which is a direct service.
If you would rather travel from Amsterdam Centraal, it is recommended that you catch the Intercity to Amersfoort Schothorst and change at Hilversum. This is because the connecting trains are scheduled to arrive at Hilversum at adjacent platforms making the switch very easy, no escalators, lifts or long walks. The timetables are set so that the Amersfoort Schothorst Intercity leaves Amsterdam Centraal in good time and the wait at Hilversum is no more than 5 minutes.
All the Amsterdam Centraal departures are on trains destined for "Amersfoort Schothorst" so look for that on the departure boards.
This scheme also works if you travel from Berlin to Amsterdam, with the schedules allowing very convenient connection times at Hilversum.
There is a buffet on the train serving hot and cold food, drinks etc; and there is a large space for carrying bikes in one of the coaches which holds and hangs up to 20 bikes.
Thanks to Rich Lenthall for this travel tip.
Seat reservations are not mandatory on the IC services and are only necessary during the summer months (May to August). One-way fares for the journey between Amsterdam and Berlin start from €49. Discounts are available for children and regular travellers.