Angela Merkel is hosting Vladimir Putin at the German government’s castle in Schloss Meseberg, just outside Berlin.
Talks are set to begin at 6pm local time (5pm BST).
Putin will arrive in Germany after first attending a wedding in Austria of the Austrian foreign minister, Karin Kneissl, who is marrying businessman Wolfgang Meilinger at a vineyard in Austria’s Styria state.
The pair will reportedly talk about Ukraine, sanctions, Syria and a controversial pipe line — Nord Stream 2.
However Merkel told reporters on Friday not to expect too much from the talks but said the two countries needed to remain in “permanent dialogue” on the long list of problems they face.
She said: “It’s a working meeting from which no specific results are expected.”
The two leaders last met in Sochi in May after Merkel travelled to the Russian coast resort.
Germany is under strong pressure from the United States to halt work on the planned Nord Stream 2 pipeline that will carry gas from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea.
The United States says it will increase Germany’s dependence on Russia for energy.
Ukraine fears the pipeline will allow Russia to cut it off from the gas transit business. Germany’s eastern European neighbours, nervous of Russian encroachment, have also raised concerns about the project.
Merkel and Putin will each make statements at 5pm BST on Saturday before the start of the talks, but they do not plan to take questions.
How tall is Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel?
The leader of Russia is 5ft 7inch (170cm), whereas Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany, is 5ft 5inch (165cm), two inches shorter.
Merkel stands five inches shorter than the average height for German leaders.
In a scientific paper published from Texas Tech University found almost two-thirds of participants showed people tending to draw larger figures when asked to draw images of leaders.
Nic Fleming wrote: “It is not for nothing that top politicians are known as political giants or “big beasts”.
“Voters see tall politicians as better suited for leadership, according to a survey of how people visualise their leadership.
“Psychologists believe the bias may stem form an evolved preference for physically imposing chiefs who could dominate enemies.”
The paper by Dr Gregg Murray and J. David Schmitz found evidence that would suggest physical stature affects people’s preferences for political leadership.
The work entitled ‘Caveman Politics’ on evolutionary psychology relates it back to ideas and beliefs gleaned from our prehistoric ancestors.