0.7 miles from city centre
Neustadt means “new town”. Yet, grand old buildings and historic hotels all but define the area. Join the city’s high rollers around Gänsemarkt, as they browse wallet-busting trinkets and haute couture. Gaze over the horizon from St Michaeliskirche’s lofty spire. For an award-winning “fishy on a dishy”, book a table at Fischmarkt.
Places to stay from US$57 per night
0.6 miles from city centre
By George! St Georg’s a cosmopolitan grab bag of nationalities, where kebab houses, theatres and mosques sit side by side. By day, tuck into coffee and cake in cosy Gnosa Café. By night, grab your feather boa and join the free and fab party-goers along Lange Reihe Street. Raunchy joints like Tom’s Saloon, Contact and La Strada have all persuasions covered.
Places to stay from US$15 per night
1.4 miles from city centre
Hamburg’s counterculture capital. Anything goes in St Pauli, a proud bastion of tolerance since its glory days of the 1960s. Although bars have replaced the bordellos of old, the Reeperbahn is still Hamburg’s go-to spot for a night of fun. Line your stomach with hearty fare from Krug before hitting the dancefloors of Neidklub or Molotow.
Places to stay from US$14 per night
In the city centre
Kick it old-school in Altstadt. A stroll around the Old Town is a lesson in Hamburg’s history. Ogle overwhelming opulence at Rathaus and sail the waterways between Speicherstadt’s vast neo-Gothic warehouses. Work up an epic appetite in Gängeviertel’s ramshackle alleyways. Then feast like a king at Estancia, purveyor of succulent steaks and rare gins.
Places to stay from US$79 per night
1.3 miles from city centre
Lakeside livin’. Rothenbaum’s swanky waterfront villas are home to Hamburg’s big cheeses, with the odd flag-flying consulate sandwiched in between. It’s a life of leafy luxury here – leisurely dog walkers and lycra-bound joggers all tread the peaceful banks of the Aussenalster, while racquet fanatics descend on Am Rothenbaum for the German Open.
Places to stay from US$31 per night
2.3 miles from city centre
Altona’s a wee bit different. Under Danish rule for centuries, it was always an open-armed haven for Hamburg’s unwanted minorities. The town’s crest even features a welcoming open door. When the sun’s out, all and sundry make a B-line for the riverbanks, picnicking at grassy Altonaer Balkon or chilling at beach bars like Strandperle.
Places to stay from US$14 per night
In Hamburg, Germany’s self-proclaimed ‘gateway to the world’, a strong maritime culture fuses with innovative designs and vibrant nightlife.
Huge container ships trundle daily into the city’s vast port, where Speicherstadt – the old warehouse district – creaks with history. Over a century old, its giant storehouses are built on oak logs and divided by canals where ships bound for destinations across the globe are loaded. Other points of interest in this area include the St. Nikolai Memorial and Miniatur Wunderland – one of the world’s largest model railways. When the tide is in, you can cruise these narrow waterways by barge to get a close-up view.
More architectural delights like Hamburg City Hall await in the city centre, while a stroll along the banks of the River Elbe reveals Hamburg’s biggest attraction: the cutting-edge Elbphilharmonie concert hall. Clad with over a thousand individually curved pieces of glass, this building is the city’s tallest and well worth visiting.
Germany’s second biggest city is also the unlikely setting where The Beatles rose to fame. Take a guided tour of the lively Reeperbahn district, where the ‘Fab Four’ lived before they were famous, for the chance to visit bars and clubs where they performed. After a day’s sightseeing, refuel in one of Schanze’s laid-back restaurants and try the local food – ‘fischbrötchen’ (fish roll) and ‘aalsuppe’ (eel soup) are particularly popular.
From US$47 per night
From US$150 per night
From US$152 per night
|Most popular time to visit||July–September|
|Cheapest time to visit||January–March|
|Local currency||€ 1 = US$1.17|
|Average weekend price||US$126 per night|
|Average weekday price||US$126 per night|
|Typical stay||2 nights|
I had only one night and day in Hamburg but I managed a walkabout in the area close to the central station and the old harbor area with the maritime museum. There is a lot more to see and I will come back some day.
Great city with one of largest harbor, You must see Maritime museum with free time to explore great history of ships and explorations. Must book in advance for Miniature museum to see models of great train stations of the world. Nice city center for shopping
Hamburg is a very nice city for a family vacation. I have been here more than 50 times in my life. For families I highly recommend a visit to the Hagenbecks zoo which is very well maintained and beautiful. Miniatur Wunderland is the worlds largest model railway and is amaizing, both for kids and adults - an absolute must, but book tickets in advance as there are a lot of visitors. Shopping on Mönchebergstrasse and the areas around the Rathaus is very good and prices decent compared to Sweden. Other nice things to see and do is a boattrip on Alster or in the channels or harbour. The Landungsbrucken area with old Elbtunnel is also a nice visit and if you come with car you can take the car through the old tunnel via a carelevator - great experince and kids love it. The Stadtpark is the third biggest in Europe - take a picnic basket with you a walk aroung, lots to see. For adults the St Pauli area with Reeperbahn is worth a visit with its special charm and 24/7 "action" and its not all about xxx-clubs as many people believes - there is a lot of interesting shops, nive resaturants and bars etc etc. A visit to the Blankenese area by Elbe is also very nice and very special housing area. If you are in Hamburg on a Sunday you need to go up early and visit "Fischmarkt" which is a market on Landungsbrucken starting at 5 in the morning and contonious until 10-11. Last tip is the restaurant Panthera Rodizio which you find at Landungsbrucken and in Harburg on the other side of Elbe - this is a brasilain restaurant which is a must for all meat lovers, take a look at the homepage for more info and you shall order whats called simply "RODIZIO" in the meny....fantastic!!
Hamburg has a lot to offer and I was introduced to it on a 3 night stay. My favorite part was probably the architecture and setting on the river. The Rathaus is amazing and the neighborhood around it was refined and varied with many restaurants and shops. Personally I preferred the restaurants on Lange Reihe which were near my hotel. Essentially go to the St. George's neighborhood. There were a surprising amount of Portuguese places to explore. In general the city has more in common with Amsterdam and Copenhagen than with Berlin. It has a North Sea, industrial port, fish eating and sea faring quality that informs its character. Be sure to walk the old tunnel under the Elbe (1911), but it will be lit in white. Many photos on the Internet show blue lights but this must be a filter. Similarly, be sure to avoid the Reeperbahn unless you want to be continuously solicited by prostitutes. Only the Fischmarkt here is worth a visit, and it is past the Reeperbahn. Why the Beatles chose this seediest of neighborhoods only 15 years after the war to be their formative stage is beyond me. They must have sold their soul to the Hanseatic League! The pedestrian mall south of the Hauptbahnhof should be explored (Mockenberg), as well as the Hanseviertel. The Planten un Blomen is very pleasant and reminds me of the Vondelpark in Amsterdam.
What to say: The Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg (the free and hanseatic city of Hamburg) is simply the best city in Germany. The gateway to the world. International and elegant flair. Great shopping, entertainment and first class restaurants... the list is endless. Therefore: visit Hamburg and you'll visit that city again and again. With family, alone or with guests. No need to visit another city in the country.
Apart from the grey skies, which I shouldn't complain about, because that IS Hamburg, we had a wonderful two days in the city. Yes, it's way too short, but it did trigger to go back and experience it again. It's a very diverse city, with of course it's amazing harbour where it might sound cheesy, but a boat tour is definitely a great way to learn about the history and industry in the harbour. Due to the diversity, it is possible to chose from any kind of nationality for your dinner. We choose Asian and Portuguese of which the latter definitely did not disappoint us. Our hotel near the St Michaels church allowed us to explore much by foot and discover little cafés and bars in the side streets. Two days is very little time for a bustling city like Hamburg, so if you have more time to spare: do so!
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