posted on: 11 November, 2020
Located on the river Elbe statuary, Hamburg, Germany’s cosy, maritime metropolis makes the perfect city break. Find out why and book with us here.
Over the years we have come across many people who fell in love with Hamburg right away. Certainly if you like water which is everywhere in Hamburg. And thinking about it we have not met anyone who did not like it!
Hamburg is home to UNESCO Worlds Heritage Sites, great nightlife, amazing natural beauty, and a vibrant cultural scene. It’s diverse, compact, arty, buzzing, relaxing, scruffy at times, and elegant all at the same time. While the city is quite spread out all sights are within easy reach by tube and most of them within walking distance. In short, Hamburg is the perfect city break.
And it has been for decades when it comes to short breaks for international and German visitors. It is right up there with Munich, Amsterdam, Barcelona or Edinburgh. For many even better…
Rule one, stay central! However when it comes to Hamburg this is not easy to pinpoint. So generally speaking if you stay within the area between the Central Train Station, the Binnenalster, St Pauli and the Port, you got it covered
There are plenty of hotels in the city centre covering all standards and price ranges. From nice budget hotels, to flashy boutique hotels over to classic luxury ones. Here is a small list of recommend stays:
Talk to us for an individual offer tailored around your budget or an apartment. And when it comes to your length of stay we recommend 2-3 nights.
Hamburg is also very walkable which is always a bonus when you are on a short break. You don’t want to spend precious time travelling hours from A to B. But if you want to give your tired legs a rest, then do jump on the tube or take a bus. The connections are very good and frequent.
Let’s start with Hamburg’s Port. Hamburg’s gate to the world has and still a very active trading port. In fact, it’s Europe second largest one. Take a port cruise or secure yourself a great viewing spot to see the massive container ships entering the port.
Right next to the port is Hamburg newest attraction. The Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra Hall. An architectural masterpiece and a stunning site comparable to the Sydney Opera House. If you like your classic music, this is the perfect place to spend your next weekend break. If not, just head to their viewing platform and the enjoy glorious views.
Adjacent to the port you find the historic Speicherstadt. Another Unesco World Heritage Site, the Speicherstadt (Warehouse City) is the world’s largest complex of warehouses. An unmissable tourist attraction which was built from 1883 and the late 1920s on thousands of oak poles in the river Elbe. The Speicherstadt’s beautiful gothic brick architecture is an exciting contrast to the modern steel-and-glass constructions of neighbouring Hafen City. Here you also find the amazing Miniatur Wunderland.
Weather permitting head to Beach Clubs along the Elbe river. Sandy beaches, drumming beats and cold beer set against the back of the massive container ships cruising by.
Only a few yards away is the Reeperbahn in St Pauli. Hamburg’s oldest red light and entertainment district. What used to be sailors spending their salary on light ladies, and you can still do that even if you are not a sailor, is nowadays mainly attracting party hungry crowds from all over the world.
But the entertainment is subtle and varied. Yes, you have your crowded bars and clubs, but it is also theatre land and you won’t have any difficulty finding a quite spot for dinner. The famous Lion King musical theatre is built on an island in the river and only accessible by ferry.
Right next door are the Landungsbrucken, where the port cruises start. A great promenade to walk along and home to the famous fish market. The Fischmarkt is not just a plain market. It’s a frenetic event! Whether you rise early or come straight from a club, crowds mingle around the market hall and watching the spectacle happen. Fish auctions, live music, beer stalls and more, it’s just great entertainment!
A little further afield, but still walkable, is Hamburg’s trendiest part, the Schanzenviertel in St Pauli. Gentrification has and is changing the area dramatically. Nowadays home to many hip café’s, shops, clubs, and bars it is also a major party hub over the weekends. People sort of meander from the Reeperbahn over to the Schanzenviertel and back. And as there’s no closing time, so you can basically go out around the clock.
It is also the home of the FC St Pauli. The world-famous antiracist football club plays in Germany’s second division and is as popular as ever. Home games usually sell out quickly but if you happen to around on a matchday, why not watch the match in one of the many pubs near the stadium. The atmosphere is almost as good and win or loose there will be a party.
Just around the corner lies a real hidden gem, the Karolinenviertel. With its narrow streets lined with stylish boutiques, cafés, and bars, it is a real heaven for retro and designer fashion fans. And music lovers find not only a large of amount of record stores here, but also many small clubs with live music. Because Hamburg stands for music. There isn’t a place in Germany where music plays a bigger role. The Beatles left a legacy on the city and its music scene. In Hamburg they became good before they became famous. Once a year the city holds a music festival around the Beatles Square honouring the Fab Four when rock, pop, folk, soul, and jazz bands play in clubs and blocked-off streets near the Reeperbahn.
Another hugely popular area established itself around the central station. St Georg, formerly a seedy, poverty ridden part of the city has become massively popular with the LGBTQ and student community. The Lange Reihe (Long Row) shopping street is St. Georg’s pulsating heart. Over half a mile of cafés, bars, restaurants, and boutiques line up along this diverse urban centre. Rainbow flags are everywhere, traffic lights show pictograms of same-sex couples and it is also the starting point of the annual Hamburg Pride Parade.
Here you also find Germany’s third biggest museum, the Kunsthalle. The Kunsthalle showcases the history of Hamburg and hosts international exhibitions from world famous artists such as Max Beckmann or Pablo Picasso.
But Hamburg has much to offer than cool and trendy neighbourhoods. Right in the actual centre the Alster river basin which looks like a giant lake is divided into two parts. The Binnenalster is a popular meeting point for locals and tourists alike. Take a relaxing stroll along its shores which are lined with luxurious shops, top 5-star hotels and beautiful villas. From here the actual city centre is just a stone throw away. Great shops line the town hall square and the MO, the Monckebergstrasse, the city’s main shopping street.
The Aussenalster stretches for many miles and it an oasis within the city. A nature paradise which invites for long walks, boat rides or relaxing pick nicks. Here you also find the popular Alsterwiesen Schwanewik and the park Schöne Aussicht (Beautiful View), which more than lives up to its name.
Blankenese is a small suburb adjacent to the centre and it’s Treppenviertel (Stairs Quarter) another World Heritage Site. A beauty spot with an almost Mediterranean atmosphere. And it’s hilly and that’s why it has around 5,000 steps. Crisscross along villas and houses from the early 20th century, past the church by the market square, through parks down to the beach. Up and down enough staircases that you can count it as your workout for the day.
Have a break in one of the beer gardens on the Süllberg terraces. From here you can enjoy magnificent views over the Elbe.
Still got energy? Well you better have because there’s always something going on in Hamburg. Music festivals, flea markets, art exhibitions, performances, shows, concerts, musicals. Hamburg is also the perfect city break for art lovers. Check the event calendar here. And there is so much more!
Hamburg is a great place to spend your next weekend trip. We recommend to stay at least for 2 nights, better 3! For more info and how to book, contact us here.
See you in Hamburg!
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