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Hamburg

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Hamburg

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Rathaus just after Christmas

Hamburg is a major port city situated on the Elbe River in northern Germany. 1,740,000 inhabitants make it Germany's second-largest city. The Greater Hamburg Metropolitan Region has a population of 4 million. It is at the same time one of the 16 German Bundesländer (states).


Understand

Hamburg is a city-state; it values its status as a "free city", being as far as possible independent of other states that existed and exist in Germany. Nevertheless, during the centuries, Hamburg has always been an international city, not only because of its position in international trade, but also in political dimensions.

Traditionally one of the most important harbours in Europe and the world, the city takes great pride in its mercantile background, which built the city's wealth in the past centuries. From 1241 on it was member of the Hanseatic League, a mediæval trade monopoly over Northern Europe. In the 19th and beginning 20th century, millions left Europe on their way to the new world through Hamburg harbour. Today, the harbour ranks second in Europe and sixth to seventh world-wide. Consequently, one of Hamburg's taglines is "The Gate to the World" (derived from the city’s coat of arms, showing an argent city wall with a gate and crowned by three towers on a field of gules). Hamburg is known to be the richest metropolitan area in the European Union (just followed by Bruxelles and London).

The harbour is the heart of the city, however, Hamburg is one of the most important media hubs in Germany, too. Half of the nation's newpapers and magazines have their roots in Hamburg. And unknown even to some locals is the fact that, with one of the Airbus aircraft assembly plants, Hamburg is a major location of the world's aerospace industry, right after Seattle (USA) and Toulouse (France).

The mercantile background reflects in the city's architecture: the only palace in Hamburg is the town hall, house of the citizen's parliament and the senate. Apart from that, the city still has large quarters with expensive houses and villas, home to merchants and captains, surrounded by lots of green. However, large parts of the city were destroyed during the devastating air raids of World War 2, killing tens of thousands and leaving more than a million homeless.

Hamburg still keeps its tradition of being an open, yet discreet city. Citizens of Hamburg, just like most Northern Germans, sometimes appear to be quite reserved at first, but once they get to know who they are dealing with, they'll be as warm and friendly as you'd wish.

The people of Hamburg are known as "Hamburgers" (pronounce the a like you're saying "ah", and it won't sound as silly). The beef patties on a bun were named after this city, where they presumably were invented. See also "frankfurter" (Frankfurt) and "wiener" (Wien, aka Vienna).

Get in

By plane

Airport Hamburg-Fuhlsbüttel (HAM)

Hamburg has the fourth-largest international airport in Germany, so arrival by plane is an obvious choice for those visiting from far away.

Hamburg airport is closed at nighttime. Flights which have suffered severe delays will be diverted to Hannover, Frankfurt or other German airports. It may therefore be prudent to avoid booking flights due to land late in the day. International flights are highly unlikely to be diverted as they are all scheduled to land well before the airport is closed for the night.

The airport--which is hugely popular with plane-spotters--is surrounded by Schrebergärten (meticulous maintained allotments), parklands and open greenspaces, criss-crossed by bicycle and walking trails. The popularity of this area is not only down to the many viewpoints, but also because Lufthansa Technik (Lufthansas maintenance service) operates some large hangars on the airport, which means that the site is visited by a variety of rare and interesting aircraft (inkluding VVIP).

The airport has been thoroughly modernized with a new terminal, streamlined infrastructure and facilities that are by and large adequate, so you won't get lost. Depending on the gate your flight arrives at or leaves from, walking longer distances can be a problem.

Despite the fact that the airport is basically in the city, it isn't necessarily easy to reach. If you are in a hurry or feel like you can't be bothered, take a taxi - but be aware that this can be costly. Buses connect the airport to the central station, to Ohlsdorf and to Rahlstedt — you can change to regional trains and subways at all three, or national/international trains at the central station. Fare is roughly 2–3 Euros per person, depending on where you wish to go. Your journey is very likely to take some time, as it is almost certain that your destination will include a change.

The bus shuttle, 'Airport Express', goes to the central station which is not covered by tickets for the public transport; you will have to pay the fare as you enter the bus: 5 Euros one-way; the trip will take about 25 minutes.

This situation is being addressed; part of the construction at the airport is for a new railway station which will hopefully result in much better connections to the city itself. The railway is expected to operate from 2008/09.

Airport "Hamburg-Lübeck" aka "Lübeck-Blankensee" (LBC)

As with many other destinations, the discount airline Ryan Air does not operate from Hamburg, as their naming scheme might indicate, but from Lübeck-Blankensee airport (not to confuse with Hamburg's suburb Blankenese), which is 65km from Hamburg via motorway A1. The second airline that offers flights to Lübeck is Wizz Air. Flights go to London Stansted (England), Shannon and Dublin (Ireland), Glasgow Prestwick (Scotland ), Stockholm Skavsta (Sweden), Milan Bergamo (Italy), Pisa (Italy) and Gdansk (Poland).

Buses connecting to the flights go from Hamburg's central bus station ("ZOB", adjacent to the main train station), cost 8 Euros and take about 1 hour and 10 minutes. The buses depart about 2 hours and 50 minutes before every Ryanair departure, meet every arrival and wait for delayed flights. Timetable is available on the bus company VHH's website.

Hamburg-Finkenwerder Airport (XFW)

XFW airport in the suburb of Finkenwerder is actually not an airport in its usual meaning but part of Airbus' Finkenwerder aircraft plant and thus only accessible to Airbus employees. For them, two daily flights are available to/from Toulouse, but most of the time the runway is used for freight, be it plane parts (up to complete sections of passenger planes using the Beluga aircraft), be it the delivery of new planes.

The runway as well as the aircraft parking lot can be observated from the public street Neß-Hauptdeich (bus 150, stop Neuenfelde, Rosengarten, follows stop Airbus), tours of the Finkenwerder plant are available exclusively via Globetrotter (ca. 2 hours, 13 €, reservation required three to four weeks in advance).

As the airport is located near the city centre, it might be the quickest way to reach Hamburg. Airbus Finkenwerder is accessible by harbour ferries (nr. 68, leaving from Teufelsbrück) and buses (nr. 150, stop: Airbus).

Hamburg-Uetersen Airport (EDHE)

This airport is served by flights from several German islands. The only way to reach it is by taxi, the nearest railway station being Tornesch.

By train

Hauptbahnhof, Central railway station

Hamburg has five major stations: Hauptbahnhof (central station), Altona, Dammtor, Harburg, Bergedorf. Various types of train service are available.

Use the German railway's online trip planner to find connections to/from Hamburg and buy tickets.

By car

via the Autobahn:

  • A1 to/from Lübeck (north-east) -- to get to the city change to the A24 at "Autobahnkreuz Ost"
  • A1 to/from Bremen, Cologne (Köln) (south/south-west) -- to get to the city change to A255
  • A7 to/from Flensburg, Kiel (north) -- to get to the city exit at "Bahrenfeld"
  • A7 to/from Hanover, Kassel (south) -- to get to the city exit right after the "Elbtunnel" at "Othmarschen" or "Bahrenfeld". Use the rightmost pipe of the "Elbtunnel" to exit at "Othmarschen".
  • A23 to/from Husum
  • A24 to/from Berlin

Be prepared to pay for parking or park outside the city and use public transportation.

By bus

Buses serving other cities (regional, national and European destinations) arrive at or depart from Hamburg's central bus station ("ZOB") which is located near the central railway station (Hauptbahnhof) (2 minute walk). Destinations include Berlin (several times a day).

Buses to Lübeck depart from Wandsbek.

Hitchhike

You can leave Hamburg to the south (A7-Hannover/Frankfurt/Munich) and southwest (A1-Bremen/Cologne/Netherlands) from the fillingstation known as "HH-Stillhorn" you can get there with the Bus 13 from suburbanstation S-Wilhelmsburg.

To Berlin you can start at the "Horner-Kreisel" and take the Bus 161 from S-Berliner Tor or walk from U3-Rauhes Haus.

http://www.mitfahrgelegenheit.de there you can find cars driving to most german cities for 10-20 euros.

Get around

Public Transportation

Hamburg has a well developed public transportation system. Buses go around the clock. At night a special "Nachtbus" (night bus) service connects the outlying districts and the city centre. The buses depart and arrive at "Rathausmarkt" near the town hall and operate all through the night. Intracity train service runs from approximately 5 AM until 1 AM in the central city, but there is often not service past 11PM in outlying districts. On weekends it runs all night. See HVV - Hamburger Verkehrsverbund for lines and prices.

Vending machines in the rail stations (and at some bus stops) sell short distance, single ride, and day tickets. Group tickets are also available. On the buses the driver will sell you what you need. To buy week or longer tickets, go to Hauptbanhof, get passport photos in the automated photo booth, and buy your pass in the information office. Or you can buy a Hamburg Card which includes the public transport system, museums and other things.

Hamburg's public transit operates on the honor system. Red vested officials make spot checks, but aside from this you simply get on and off as you wish with no turnstiles or gates. The exception is late evening (after 9 pm) and Sundays on the buses, when the driver must check passengers' tickets.

Try to avoid rush-hours before 9 AM and 4-7 PM. You are not allowed to take bikes into subways before 9am and between 4pm and 6pm unless it is a folding bike model like a Dahon, Brompton, Bike Friday, etc... Folders are allowed on Hamburg public transit at any time of the day.

Six ferry services operate in the harbor and along the River Elbe as part of the regular public transport system. (Tip: Take ferry line 62 from Landungsbrücken to Finkenwerder and back to enjoy a scenic trip through the habour on day ticket.)

On the two Alster lakes, a ferry boat is travelling once every hour from Jungfernstieg in the city centre to Winterhuder Fährhaus. These boats are not in the general HVV ticket system, thus more expensive, however they offer a splendid view to some of the wealthiest neighbourhoods of Hamburg.

And if you are travelling to Hamburg using Niedersachsen ticket or Schleswig Holstein ticket, then you have access to all the - HVV lines on the same.

Taxicabs

There is a good availability of taxis in Hamburg throughout the entire day, both at taxi stands and in the streets. You can identify a taxi rank by a green box on a post somewhat like an oversized parking meter or alarm post. You will have to wait there or phone one of the numbers below, since the boxes can NOT be used to call a cab. Almost all vehicles are still in the traditional ivory white colour, but even if not, a yellow and black sign on the roof reading "TAXI" indicates a licensed cab. As usual, the sign is switched on to indicate vacancies. The meter starts at € 2.20. A trip in the city area will be between € 6 and € 12. For a trip from the city to the airport expect to pay € 20 to € 25. Most taxis accept credit card payments.

Railways

Hamburg has six S-Bahn (suburban) lines and three U-Bahn (subway) lines, which will be joined by the U4 in 2012. This line will provide a much needed link between Jungfernstieg (i.e the city center) and the new developments in the Hafencity. All lines run partly over- and underground, in the city and in the outskirts, the only difference is that these are two companies - and even this doesn't matter due to the unified fare system.

All train platforms have signs showing the next train, where it is headed, and how many minutes until it arrives. Trains are described by a number and the final station. Note that the final station may vary: for example, half of the S1 trains heading west go all the way to Wedel, but the other half only go as far as Blankenese. Also, all S-Bahn trains with one-digit numbers go via Landungsbrücken and Jungfernstieg and all S-Bahn trains with two-digit numbers go via Dammtor.

Note that train doors don't open automatically: you have to press a button or pull a handle on the door. Please wait for the passengers to get off first before you enter. In the cold seasons don't forget to close the door after getting on the train if it looks like a longer stop; either push the handle or press the closing buttons on the inside until the door is closed.

See

City Centre

Around Mönckebergstraße

The area west of Hamburg's central railway station is mainly a shopping area with the streets Spitaler Straße and Mönckebergstraße leading to Hamburg's town hall. Close to the Mönckebergstraße you find the churches St. Jacobi (at road Jakobikirchhof) and St. Petri (at road Bergstraße), two of Hamburg's five main churches. Directly beside St. Petri there is the Hubelhaus dating from the beginning of the 20th century as most buildings around, but looking much older.

Behind the Hubelhaus under the building of "Radio Hamburg" you can visit the remains of the bishops tower, from the 11th century. On the other side of the road, you can currently see excavations in progress, seeking the remains of the small fortress Hammaburg, which was erected in the 9th century giving Hamburg its name.

Around city hall

The Mönckebergstraße ends at Hamburg's impressive city hall ("Rathaus"). It was built 1897 out of sandstone in neo-Renaissance style having a 112 meters tower. Inside there are several magnificent halls used for representative purposes and sittings of government and parliament. These can be visited in guided tours (Mon-Thu: 10:00-15:15, Fri-Sun: 10:00-13:15, half-hourly in German, hourly in English and French. Closed during official events. Admission: EUR 2/0.50 adult/children.) A virtual tour with photos and German comments is available here.

The building behind the city hall is Hamburg's House of Commerce ("Börse"). Between the buildings there is a little nice place called Rathaushof with its fountain Hygieia-Brunnen. The place in front of the city hall is the Rathausmarkt hosting many events especially in summer.

North of the Rathausmarkt you find white arches at a canal called Alsterarkaden. The whole area behind is full of indoor shopping arcades. The most well-known one is the Hanse Viertel.

Following the canal to the right and crossing the traditional shopping road Jungfernstieg you quickly get to the artificial lake Binnenalster. Boat tours take you to the even bigger artificial lake Außenalster directly behind the Binnenalster with lots of sailing boats in summer.

Around St. Nikolai

From the House of Commerce into the road Börsenbrücke you get to the house of the Patriotische Gesellschaft. Behind the building to the right there is the bridge Trostbrücke with the statues of Graf Adolf III and Bishop Ansgar on both sides. Following the water to left, there is Hamburg's oldest remaining bridge Zollenbrücke from the 17th century.

At the other side of the Trostbrücke there is the ruin of the church St. Nikolai. All five main churches of Hamburg were damaged in World War II. But in contrast to the other four St. Nikolai has not been re-erected making it a memorial against war. The steeple is still standing and visitors can take an elevator to the top for a view of the city. The price to take the elevator is 3 Euros. At the side of St.Nikolai there is the hop market ("Hopfenmarkt") with its fountain Vierländerinbrunnen.

Following the bridge over the huge street Willy-Brandt-Straße and keeping right takes you into the road "Alte Deichstraße" with its ensemble of traditional half timbered merchant houses and the canal Nicolai Fleet at the rear. This is the site where Hamburg's harbour was some centuries ago.

Harbour Area

Dock "Elbe 17" in Hamburg harbor

At the southern end of the Alte Deichstraße you see where the harbour moved afterwards. There is a canal called Zollkanal. Looking to the left you see the Speicherstadt, a large district of warehouses from around 1900. Some are still in use, but others have been converted to apartments. It's a "typical" location and worth a visit. It also houses attractions such as the "Hamburg Dungeon" and the "Miniatur-Wunderland".

The Hamburg Dungeon is a live-action presentation of the "darker times" of Hamburg. It is probably mostly suited for a younger, easily impressed audience. But it might not be suitable for young children. For details see their Website.

The Miniaturwunderland is the world largest model railway layout. The panoramas include parts of Hamburg, the Alps, the American west and a Scandanavian exhibit which features automated ships on a body of water. It is located in the Speicherstadt close to the Hamburg Dungeon. For details see their Website.

Behind the Speicherstadt is the area of Hamburg's HafenCity. It is Europe's largest project of city development, creating a whole new quarter from scratch in a former harbour region. The Kesselhaus houses an exhibition about (Am Sandtorkai 30, in the Speicherstadt, Open Tue-Sun 10am-6pm, Official Webpage in English, admission free).

The Hamburg Cruise Center, where cruise lines land in Hamburg, is in the HafenCity. Its terminal building is constructed out of 40 sea containers. Nearby, directly at the river Elbe, you find an orange observation tower called HafenCity View Point, allowing nice views on the HafenCity, the harbour and the river (admission free).

Looking from Alte Deichstraße over the Zollkanal to the right you can see the modern buildings belonging to the Hanseatic Trade Center ending to the right at the Kehrwiederspitze. Looking further right you already see the modern harbour.

Walking in this direction takes you to the river Elbe. At the opposite of the metro station "Baumwall" there's Hamburg's city and yacht harbour ("City und Sportboothafen"). The big red lighthouse ship ("Feuerschiff") hosts a restaurant today. Some yards further down the Elbe you get to the Überseebrücke where formerly big cruise liners docked when coming to Hamburg. Permanently docked is the museum ship Cap San Diego, which is said to be last classic cargo ship.

Leaving the water, passing by the hypermodern building of the Gruner + Jahr publishers, you get to the church St. Michaelis (called "Michel", from the tower you'll have a great view over the city), Hamburg's well-known landmark. Close to the Michel off the road Krayenkamp the shopkeeper-office-flats ("Krameramtswohnungen") are the last example of a typical 17th century housing estate.

Continuing down the river Elbe you get to Landungsbrücken ("landing bridges"), the most touristy part of Hamburg's harbour, close to the metro station with the same name. Piers connected with several bridges swim on the water adapting to the tide. There tourism boats land and you will find tourist shops, restaurants and snack bars. The sailing ship Rickmer Rickmers can be visited.

Hafenrundfahrt just started

From Landungsbrücken you can make boat tours into the harbour. These Hafenrundfahrten are available from various companies and take around an hour. Big ships provide more comfort, but smaller ships also go though the Speicherstadt. Both are well worth the money. Inquire about English language tours.

As a low-budget alternative for a boat tour on the river Elbe take a HADAG Ferry that is part of Hamburg's public transport system (HVV, see "Get Around"). If you have already bought a HVV day ticket, the ride is free. Most tourists take the number 62 to Finkenwerder via the museum harbour Övelgönne. The whole ride to Finkenwerder and return takes about an hour. In Finkenwerder you can continue with another ferry to Teufelsbrück (costs extra).

You can also walk through the tunnel Alter Elbtunnel from 1911 to the other side of the river Elbe and have great views from there. A lift or stairs bring you the 24 meters down into the tunnel. You then walk through one of its two 427 meter long pipes having 12 meters of water over your head. The tunnel is decorated with ceramic arts of maritime motives (e.g. fish, mussles, seals, old boots). At the other side you again walk up the stairs or take a lift. Go out and back to the river to "Aussichtspunkt Steinwerder" for great views on Landungsbrücken and the sights behind. Even cars can pass though the tunnel (only Mon-Fri, 5:30-20:00, for 2 Euros) being brought down with 4 lifts. You find the tunnel at Landungsbrücken in the building having the biggest green dome. Signs to "Aussichtspunkt Steinwerder" also point to it. For pedestrians and bicycles it is free and open all day and night, every day.

Walking from Landungsbrücken down the river Elbe takes you to St. Pauli Fischmarkt, walking further you'll reach Övelgönne and Blankenese.

Other Neighbourhoods

Sankt Pauli

Another Hamburg landmark is the Reeperbahn in Sankt Pauli - probably one of the most famous red-light districts in the world. From variety to prostitutes, from bars to sex-shops you can find an assortment of attractions. Plus, it is frequently visited by a lot of travelers to go shopping for a huge variety of sex-related articles and toys - it is probably one of very few places worldwide where all shopkeepers give you serious and open advice on all kinds of sex-related articles. Common sense and caution are advised here as in any such area. It's relatively safe and a definite touristy place to see - a lot of people go there for dinner, live music, or other non-sex related activities.

Three times a year (March, August, and November) there is an enormous fair in this part of down called Dom [5]. It features rides, enormous numbers of food vendors, and a broad range of tacky animatronics. Take the U-Bahn to Feldstraße. In a park across the street is an enormous statue of Bismark.


The "Hafenstraße" (Harbourstreet) is between Landungsbrücken the most touristcrowded place in the city and the fishmarket, wich has just opend on Sunday morning 4:30 to 9.30 for this time this is the most tourist-crowded place. The Street between was squated in the 1980s and was well known from the medias, when there were "Battles" between the Autonomous movement and the police. Now there are still some houses existing, the "80s-Myth" is dead, but you can go to the Punksbar "onkel otto" or eat at the "vokü" (mo-fr? 2o.oo)

During the time of Squating, the well known footballclub "F.C. St.Pauli" becomes an antifascist-fan-crowd, in opposition to rightwing hooligans. The team played the last years in the third league, but was even one of the most popular teams in germany. If you get the chance for a ticket of a match or you find a way over the fences around the stadium, don't miss the chance.

Sankt Pauli is one of the most populous district in Europe and a melting pot of all different people, thousands of stories and interesting history.

Schanzenviertel

Schulterblatt Street in Schanzenviertel

This neighbourhood is situatated right inbetween Sankt Pauli, Eimsbüttel and Altona. Get out Sternschanze station and walk down Schanzenstraße southward to reach the vivid centre of Schanzenviertel. Students, immigrants from all around the world and young creatives give this quarter a unique and urban flair. During the last few years, Schanzenviertel became very popular among even wealthy people. This lead to rising rents and living costs on the one hand and a variety of exquisite boutiques on the other. The Schulterblatt street with the Rote Flora building and its galore of bars and restaurants represents the centre of Schanzenviertel. The Rote Flora is last squated house in Hamburg, on self-organization level you have during the week in café and on friday and saturday sometimes fantastic partys for small prices. The Streetlife in the neighbourhood is changing, from hanging around in the "Schanzenpark" with playing drums and juggling to sitting in a café on the place so called "Piaza". It's losing his charm within a gentrification process, which will cost the city his name as "open-minded".

Sankt Georg

Situated northeast of centralstation and city centre, Sankt Georg is the lively, trendy centre of Hamburg's gay scene. Rainbow flags flutter from the balconies in summer. And the streets are crowded with people shopping, having a chat, drinking coffee or going to one of the many art exhibitions around the Lange Reihe street.

Ottensen

Zeißstraße in Ottensen

The former Danish village Ottensen, bordered by the River Elbe in the south and the Altona Central Station in the east, is not unlike Schanzenviertel a very hip place to live. In the seventies and eighties, Ottensen was mainly populated by Turks, working class people and political activists. Nowadays it is one of the most expensive neighbourhoods. Its situation and the architecture let many inhabitants even today speak of Ottensen as a village. The Fabrik, an alternative concert hall, is situated at Barnerstrasse. Only a few blocks away lies Zeisehallen, a formerly occupied fabric hall, nowadays home of a movie theatre, a gallery, a restaurant and a bookshop. Ottenser Hauptstrasse and Bahrenfelder Strasse, crossing at the Spritzenplatz offer a huge variety of small shops and bistros.

Blankenese

Blankenese was a fishing village on the Elbe to the southwest of Hamburg. It lies in a valley between two of the only ridges in the area that runs straight down to the river. On pretty weekends, the place will be full of Hamburgers there to enjoy the tiny beaches, the winding streets, and the charming houses. Blankenese is among the most picturesque parts of Hamburg.

To get there, take the S1 to Wedel or the S11 to Blankenese. The train station lies at the top of the valley, on Bahnhofstraße. Go straight across Bahnhofstraße and your will find the banks, an Italian gelateria and café, the market square (markets open early and close at 1PM on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday), and the bakeries, grocery store, and post office.

Other Sites

Chilehaus

U 434: One of the biggest non-nuclear Soviet submarines.

Church St. Katherinen: One of the five main churches of Hamburg.

The Chilehaus depicting the form of a ship is propably the best example of the 1920s style of "Kontorhaus" architecture - large office buildings in the typical northern red brick style.

The Auswandererhalle is only a sight if you know its history. In some way it is the counterpart of Ellis Island in New York where immigrants from the old world landed in America. Emmigrants stayed in Hamburg's Auswandererhallen for two weeks in quarantine before emigrating to the new world. It was opened 1900 and regarded to be modern and comfortable. After the flow of emigrants decreased it was closed in 1934. Today only one of the buildings is left and nothing tells you about its historical role. It just looks like a dirty, white commercial building with a today closed restaurant on one side. But for the future there are plans to make it a museum. For a visit take metro S3 to Station "Veddel". Leave at its southern exit, cross the bus station and the steet "Veddeler Straße". Then you stand in front of it.

Parks

  • Alter Botanischer Garten with a Tropenhaus.
  • Planten un Bloomen is a park in the city with an emphasis on flower displays. Subway station Dammtor.
  • Ohlsdorfer Friedhof: One of the world's biggest graveyards.
  • The Stadtpark (city park) with a pretty good Planetarium situated in an old water tower in the middle of the park.
  • Alstervorland at the Außenalster
  • Jenischpark, Baurs Park and Garten der Alma l'Aigles down the river Elbe close to Teufelsbrück.
  • Neuer Botanischer Garten
  • Hamburg's Zoo called Hagenbecks Tierpark

Beaches

There are a number of small beaches on the North side of the Elbe river between Övelgönne and Blankenese. Even though not common, it is safe to swim in the Elbe there (if you don't swim out too far). You may have a barbecue there in the evenings as long as you bring a grill and clean up after you. Watch out for surprisingly large waves created by container ships passing by.

In addition, there are a usually number of commercial beach clubs during the summer, usually between Fischmarkt and Övelgönne. Other than the name might indicate, these are bars open to the public.

The best way to come to the most popular beach, is to take the harbour-ferry-bus from the Landungsbrücken-station to Neumühlen/Övelgönne.

Museums

Hamburg publishes a thick booklet of their museums called Museumswelt Hamburg, containing details of all the city's museums, which you can find at the information desk of any of the museums.

  • Altonaer Museum - Dedicated to Altona's, Hamburg's and northern Germany's cultural history
  • BallinStadt Auswanderwelt Hamburg (BallinStadt - History of Emigraton), Veddeler Bogen 2, +49/ (0)40/ 3197916-0 (, fax: +49/ (0)40/ 3197916-20), [1]. Originally built in 1892 under the guidance of Albert Ballin, the complex was built to provide medical care and accommodation to immigrants, who were emigrating to the US on HAPAG ships. The complex was converted into a museum, though, it's original design and layout is not the same because parts of the complex were demolished and destroyed. The museum is dedicated to the five million persons who emigrated via Hamburg.
  • Deichtorhallen - The Deichtorhallen is one of the best known exhibition galleries worldwide. The historical buildings are divided into an exhibition hall for contemporary art and the "House of Photography" – together the two buildings organize a highly diverse program of changing exhibitions.
  • Deutsches Zollmuseum (admission free)
  • Kunsthalle Glockengießerwall near Hauptbahnhof, Telephone 428 131-200, Fax 428 54-3409 [6] Open Tues-Sun 10AM-6PM, Thurs 10AM-9PM. The museum houses an important collection of painting from the 19th century with works from Max Liebermann, Lovis Corinth, Philipp Otto Runge, Caspar David Friedrich, Adolf Menzel and modern arts. It rises on both sides of a paved court: the Baroque building on one side has the older works. The areas under the courtyard and the other, modern looking building house an extensive collection of very modern art. There are some extremely fine pieces, but the quality is uneven and the curacy curious at times. For instance, in a far back corner with minimal climate control and no observation are four or five gorgeous French Impressionist paintings which are among the finest in the museum.
  • Museumshafen Övelgönne (admission free)
  • Museum für Kommunikation (admission free)
  • Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Glockengießerwall, just to the southeast of Hauptbahnhof, Telephon 428 131-200, Fax 428 134-28 34 [7] Open Tues-Sun, 10AM-6PM, Thursday 10AM-9PM. The museum is a leading centre for art, applied art and design. Its collections of work from Europe, the Middle and the Far East are of the finest-quality and span all epochs from the Ancient World to the present day. They also have many activities and concerts (see the Classical Music section). The museum is housed in an 18th century palace, which has the original roofs and cielings, and as of April 2006, large parts of the museum are closed for major structural renovation. €5
  • Hamburg-Museum (former: Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte), Holstenwall, close to Underground station "St. Pauli". This is the museum of city history, bringing the past to live with a lot of models showing the devellopment of the harbour and the city. The club "MEHEV" is showing a 40-years of age old and one of the largest scale-1 modell railroads here.
  • Museum für Völkerkunde Rothenbaumchaussee, Museum of Ethnology
  • Spicey's Gewürzmuseum (Spice Museum) located in the Speicherstadt claims to be the worlds only spice museum. Entrance is €3.

Churches, Mosques and Synagogues

Hamburg is traditionally a lutheran evangelic town. But due to the large number of different ethnic groups who settled in the harbour town, one is most certainly going to find a suitable temple of any religion. Almost all synagogues have been destroyed during the time of Nazi-government.

  • Synagoge Hamburg - Situated in the traditionally Jewish Grindel neighbourhood
  • Christianskirche - Baroque church in Ottensen
  • Dreieinigkeitskirche St. Georg - Baroque church in Sankt Georg
  • St.-Marien-Dom St. Georg Since 1995 this neo-romanesque church is the cathedral of the youngest roman-catholic archbishopry of Germany. Though the church has not the splendor one might expect, next to it you may find the first statue world wide of the late pope, John-Paul II.
  • Flussschifferkirche - Germany's only swimming church in Rothenburgsort [8]
  • Imam-Ali-Mosque - Biggest of all mosques in Hamburg. Centre of the religious and cultural life of the huge Iranian community. The Imams of Hamburg happen to have played important roles in Iran's religious and political everyday life since their installation in the 1950s.

Do

Theatre, Opera and Musicals

Hamburg has an opera house (Staatsoper) and many theaters. It is also known to host a number of different Musicals as well as other music events.

Classical Music

The Laeiszhalle is the main classical music hall in Hamburg, with two halls: the klein Saal and großer Saal. You can see the schedule on their website; for online ticket purchases, use Ticket Online.

The Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg has many smaller concerts --- something almost every day --- and is much cheaper than the Laeiszhalle. The programs range from the curator of their early keyboard instrument collection playing them and giving a spiel on the music and the instruments (in German only!), to formal concerts of renditions of Schubert's Die Winterreise. Pick up a schedule at the desk of the museum (down the street from Hamburg Hauptbanhof).

Theatres

  • Deutsches Schauspielhaus - The biggest german speech theatre looks back on a famous tradition: Gustav Gründgens, Ivan Nagel and Peter Zadek staged highlights in german theatre history here.
  • Ernst-Deutsch-Theater - The Ernst-Deutsch-Theater has been an established part of the Hamburg theatre scene since 1951. Today it is the largest privately operated playhouse in Germany.
  • Thalia-Theater - New directors and the continuing cooperation with young important writers based on the confidence in a strong and vital company lead to international acknowledgment.
  • The English Theatre of Hamburg - The English Theatre of Hamburg performs from September through June, giving eight performances per week.[9]
  • Schmidt-Theater - Theatre, variety, cabaret, concerts and satirical revues.
  • Schmidts Tivoli - Avantgarde shows and high-class musicals. The world famous musical "Cabaret" and the successful musical compendium "Fifty Fifty" were staged here.
  • The Rover Rep Theatre - English language pub theatre under the Irish Rover at the Großneumarkt. High class professional productions in a special atmosphere.
  • The Hamburg Players - Hamburgs oldest English language theatre group giving three shows a year at the Theater in der Marschnerstraße.

Musicals

  • Dirty Dancing by Eleanor Bergstein
  • Ich war noch niemals in New York by Udo Jürgens
  • Lion King by Disney

Note that all musicals are in German language, regardless of their origin. If you're still interested, make sure to buy tickets early, many shows are sold-out. But, midweek there is a good chance that you will be able to buy last-minute-tickets at a highly discounted price of 40€ regardless of price category, age or occupation.

Sports

  • The HSH-Nordbank-Arena (formerly AOL-Arena, commonly known as Volksparkstadion) is the stadium of the local Bundesliga football/soccer club HSV. Newly constructed and reopened 2000 it is arguably the prettiest stadium in Germany with a great atmosphere; as well as guided tours it also features a museum presenting the history of the club. See also the HSV website.
  • The Millerntor-Stadion is the home of the famous football/soccer club FC St. Pauli. It lacks the modernity and prettiness of the Volksparkstadion, yet its atmosphere during games is unique and well worth a visit. The Millerntor-Stadion is located at the east end of the Reeperbahn. Nearest station is St Pauli on the underground line U3.
  • Hamburg Blue Devils - Fourfold German American Football Champion (German Football League).
  • HSV Handball is the local handball team, playing their matches at the modern Colorline-Arena, right next to the Volksparkstadion.
  • Hamburg Freezers share the Colorline-Arena with HSV Handball. The premier-league icehockey team features many international top class players.
  • The German Open in men's Tennis are held at the Rothenbaum in Hamburg. The tournament is one of nine ATP Masters Series tournaments.
  • Deutsche Bank Players’ Championship at the Gut Kaden Golf and Land Club. Golf tournament of world class, prize money 600,000 euros.
  • Vattenfall Cyclassics - World Cup and public bike race.
  • Holsten City Man - The only German Triathlon World Cup.
  • Conergy Marathon Hamburg - usually in spring, open to the public.

Events

  • Fischmarkt (Fish Market) - Every Sunday morning vendors praise wares of virtually every type at Hamburg's oldest open-air market, dating back to 1703. The market takes place at the foot of the century-old Fish Auction Hall, where live-bands perform jazz, skiffle, country or western music. Open every Sunday from 5am to 9.30am, in winter from 7am to 9.30am
  • Hafengeburtstag (Harbour Birthday) - Every year in May the harbor birthday attracts millions of people. Dozens of stands and stages, a ship parade and changing events are organised to celebrate the cities spring of wealth. The harbor filled 800 years in 1989. Since then, the Harbor Birthday grew the greatest harbor party in the world. It is in general in early May.
  • Kirschblütenfest (Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival) - On May 19th, the japanese community of Hamburg celebrates the Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival by the Lake Alster. Enormous fireworks and a peaceful atmosphere are characteristics of this event.
  • Hamburger Dom (Fair) - The Dom is one of the largest fairs in Germany. The streets of the fairground, lined on both sides with stalls and rides, are some 3.3 km long. It takes places in spring, summer and early winter for the duration of one month each. See the Dom's website.
  • Street Parties - Watch out for neighbourhood and street parties during summertime, of which the biggest are:
    • altonale in Ottensen
    • Bergedorfer Stadtfest in Bergedorf
    • Osterstraßenfest in Eimsbüttel
    • Schanzenfest in Schanzenviertel is selforganised and full of peace and happiness until it ends around 22 o'clock in fightings between a crowd and the police
    • Stuttgarter Weindorf Vintners from southern Germany present their products at the Rathausmarkt (town hall square)
  • Street Parades
    • Schlagermove Parade, a parody on the Berlin Loveparade with schlager instead of techno music. (Date 2007: 6th-7th of July/Date 2008: 4th-5th of July) [10]
    • Hamburg Pride, the big Gay Pride usually taking place in August and moving from the main station thru the shopping streets to end at the Jungfernstieg with the set up party tents. (Date 2007: 3rd-5th August, parade on saturday) [11]
    • Carnival of Cultures, a colouful and interested parade showing off worldwide cultures represented by the various (Date 2007: 5th September) [12]

Spas

  • Club Olympus Spa & Fitness, Park Hyatt Hamburg Hotel, Bugenhagenstrasse 8, +49 40 3332 1234 (), [2].

Learn

There are 11 universities in Hamburg, the biggest of which is the University of Hamburg. Uni-Hamburg Many courses and programmes are held in English.

Hamburg is home to schools from countries such as Japan, Sweden, France, Britain and more, where the pupils are taught in their native language. The International School Hamburg opened 1957 as the first of its kind in Germany.

Work

The harbour is the fastest growing job sector in Hamburg. Numerous minor and major companies work in that area. You should be able to speak German because due to the high unemployment rate in Germany jobseekers are attracted by the relative lower unemployment rate in Hamburg. This results in high numbers of applications. Hospitality and media are the two main other industries.

Buy

Full shopping tour starts at central station, down to town hall, then Poststrasse towards Gaensemarkt square and back on Jungfernstieg at the Alter lake side.

The main shopping area of Hamburg is the Mönckebergstraße in the center of the city. Take the subway to either central station, Rathaus (town hall) or Mönckebergstraße. Also check the side-street Spitalerstraße. West of town hall towards Gaensemarkt are the more pricey shops like Hugo Boss. Shops are mostly open from 10AM to 8PM and to 10PM on thursdays and fridays.

  • The latest must-see is the newly built shopping complex Europa Passage near to the town hall at the Alster lake.
    Europa Passage
  • A good and not-overpriced souvenir shop is directly located on the townhall square under the glass roofage. Typical souvenirs are statues of the Michel Church or the town hall, the water-carrying dogsbody Hummel hummel Mors mors, blue road signs like Reeperbahn and a post card of the red light district.

The Schanzenviertel is also getting more popular nowadays for unique designer botiques. Especially younger people happen to be here often. Subway: "Sternschanze"/"Feldstraße".

Hamburg has quite many shops which claim "Second Hand" but are more of an outlet. It's worth a visit still though.

  • New and second hand Kleidermarkt Max-Brauer-Allee 174, S-bahn: Holstenstraße

Neuer Kamp 23, U-bahn:

  • Vintage & Rags: Kurze Mühren 6, U-bahn: Mönckebergstraße

Eat

Budget

  • Geelhaus, Koppel 76 (St. Georg), 20099 Hamburg, phone.[13] Daily 6pm-11pm, some meals until midnight; menu changes frequently, fresh food, creativity.
  • Lühmanns Teestube, Blankeneser Landstrasse 29, 22587 Hamburg (take the S-Bahn to Blankenese, and walk west on Blankeneser Landstraße from the station), phone 040 / [14] Mon-Fri 9AM-11PM, Sat 9AM-6PM, Sun 10AM-11PM. Friendly local café. Light fare and local specialties, wonderful pies and baked goods. Their Cornish tea with fresh scones is worth trying. €5-15.
  • Murphy's Roadhouse, Saseler Markt 1 (Subway station Poppenbüttel, then take the Bus to Saseler Markt),. Mon-Thu Noon-1AM, Fri+Sat Noon-2AM, Sun 10am-Midnight. Serves a variety of American type food; good quality and portions at decent prices. Located in the northern suburbs, so it's a bit of a trip unless you are in the area. Typical meal should run about €10-17.
  • Teufels Küche, Ottenser Hauptstraße 4, 22765 Hamburg, phone, Mon-Sat 11am-11pm, Sun Noon-10pm. Serves international freestyle food.
  • Ristorante Borsalino, Sternstrasse 125, Schanzenviertel, Tel., www.ristorante-borsalino.de, just 3 min from Train Station Sternschanze in the trendy neighbourhood of Schanzenviertel (see above) this little italien gem serves great and very affordable italian food at even better prices. Pizzas start from 6 Euros, fresh pasta is around 7-10 Euro (Pasta Mista is highly recommended), the meat dishes are delicious (it is right next to the "Schlachthof"-Slaughterhouse) and the four course menu is unbeatable at 17,50 Euros. From 12a.m to 3 p.m they serve a lunch menu for 6,50 Euros. Opening hours: Mon-Fri 12am-3pm and 6pm-midnight, Sat 6pm-midnight, Sundays closed. Reservation on Friday & Saturday Evening recommended.
  • Around train station Hammerbrook (one stop from central station) you find a couple of lunch places offer variety from sandwiches, Spoon's soups, pasta and German main courses. Open only during lunch time since this is an office area. Prices from 3-8 Euro per meal.
  • In central station you can get all kinds of snacks including the fast food chains. But also fresh fish: Hamburg or Sushi style.

vegetarian/vegan food

every day you can get veg food for donation (1,50 euro) in diffenent places check out on this side: http://www.nadir.org/nadir/initiativ/bewegungsmelder/index2.htm

In the Hauptbahnhof (Main station) there are a lot of snack bars to have a quick meal. While there are probably not any vegetarian snack bars, there is a fairly decent selection of veggie food to be found, such as croissants w/ brie cheese and meat-free pizza slices.

Mid-range

  • La Mirabelle, Bundesstraße 15, phone; French cuisine, fresh 4- or 5-course changing daily, including wine @ approx. 55 EUR
  • Restaurant COX, Greifswalder Str. 43, St. Georg, Tel. 040/249422 [15], trendy Restaurant with consistently good international cuisine, often local German dishes, has a very good value lunch deal (2 course Menu 11 Euros), close to main station, Dinner including Wine approx. 30-40 Euros
  • Vapiano. Two locations within Hamburg, [16]. Sensational Italian food, in a trendy, friendly atmosphere. Fill your boots for around €20.
  • Prinz und Koenig, Poststraße 53, 20354 Hamburg. A wonderfully cosy pub with great food - [17]. Highly recommended, is the 'Huftsteak vom heissen stein' - a South American beef steak, which you cook yourself on a hot stone. Absolutely delicious, a bargain at €10. A great array of beers to wash the food down with, and late opening hours.

Splurge

  • Fischereihafen-Restaurant, Große Elbstraße 143, 22767 Hamburg, phone +49 40 381816.[18] Excellent view of parts of the port and the river Elbe; many celebs have dined here, including English royals.

Cafe

  • Cafe Klatsch, Glashüttenstraße 17, 20357 Hamburg; A small cafe serving delicious breakfast and other tidbits in a very cosy environment with friendly staff.
  • during the Semstertimes of the University go to Café Knallhart or the T-Stube you get a coffe for around 50 cent and relax on the sofas

if you want to relax and drink a coffe in some coffe Bars go to

  • MarYSol or tazza d'oro(both "Ottenser Hauptstraße") or some other Cafés in the Ottensen area.
  • go to the so called Piazza in the "schulterblatt" (Schanze) you will find a high hugh number of bars and cafés.

Döner

  • Batman Döner, Steinstraße, St. Georg
  • Pamukkale Grill & Restaurant, Susannenstraße 34-35, 20357 Hamburg; Opposite Lokma. One of the oldest Doener stores in Hamburg. Operates a takeaway bistro and a restaurant.
  • Lokma, Susannenstr. 16, 20357 Hamburg; Check out "Lokma" - one of the best places to treat yourself with a nice Doener. It is not without reason that a lot of Turkish people love this place. Take the "S11" subway and get out at "Sternschanze". From there Lokma can be found within 7 min. walking distance.

Falafel

  • Falafel factory next to S-Sternschanze, price 2,60(normal) 3,10(special)
  • Azeitona Beckstraße (Schanze), price 2,50, you can get there also other great oriental food and smoke a shisha
  • Aladin on the other side of the "Fabrik" in the Bahrenfelderstraße (Ottensen/Altona)

Drink

  • Christiansen's Fine Drinks & Cocktails, Pinnasberg 60, 20359 Hamburg, phone +49 40 3172863, fax +49 40 3172863, [email protected] -- award winning bar (Playboy Bar of the Year 1998, Best Bartender 2000, Marcellinos Top 10, etc.), open Monday thru Saturday nights from 8pm. http://www.christiansens.de/
  • Down Under, Grindellallee 1, 20146 Hamburg, phone +49 40 457017 -- Australian-themed bar with lots of cocktails (€5-€10), burgers (chicken burger €6, beef burger €8, ostrich burger €9.50), chicken wings (also all you can eat on Tuesdays). http://www.down-under-hamburg.de/
  • ZaZa-Bar, Mühlenkamp 10, Hamburg-Winterhude, phone +40 40 27880135. Small Bar in the trendy Winterhude neighbourhood that serves consistently good drinks and has an interesting crowd of customers: some shoppers that celebrate their latests fashions, office workers that cool down, night owls that warm up, and quite few pwople who live in the area and just drop in for a drink. Has chairs outside (yes, there is sometimes sun in Hamburg!) Happy Hour from 5p.m. to 9p.m. and all night on Mondays. http://www.zazabar.de/

Live-Music (Rock)

  • The Academy, Hans-Albers-Platz (right off the Reeperbahn) -- people in wheelchairs not always welcome
  • Molly Malone, Hans-Albers-Platz (right off the Reeperbahn)
  • The New Thomas Read, Reeperbahn opposite from Hans-Albers-Platz
  • Molotow/Meanie bar, Spielbudenplatz 5 (Reeperbahn). A retro Bar and a great little venue in the cellar hosting alternative live acts.

GLBT

  • G-Bar The New Generation, Lange Reihe 81, 20099 Hamburg, open 6pm until 2am. http://www.g-bar.org/
  • Cafe Gnosa Lange Reihe 93, 20099 Hamburg, phone +49 40 243034, open 10am until 1am, Fridays and Saturdays until 2am; famous for its cake buffet, also a great place to have breakfast or lunch. http://www.gnosa.de/

Clubbing

The Reeperbahn is world-famous as the "sinful miles" packed with dancing clubs, strip clubs, bars, sex shops and entertainment. One can always find the perfect party spontaneously on-location. Check the local going-out magazine Prinz [19] for specific dates.

Party

  • On Fridays and Saturdays there is huge number of parties. You have to go to the Reeperbahn but it will cost a lot and often the parties there are not more than "normal". There are different subcultures and good underground parties you should look for. In the summertime you can get a free open-air goa. Lots of electronic stuff, like Drum'N'Bass. Look for a "Drumbule" soundystem party. Hamburg used to have a great Hip-Hop culture, but it is declining.

Sleep

Budget

Youth Hostels:

Camping To the south fo the city in 'Holm Seppenson' there is a camp-site that even during the busy (and often full) summer months has spaces. it is about 40 minutes train ride from hamburg, once at the Holm Seppenson station proceed south and look for the camping sign

Mid-range

There are countless hotels in Hamburg, too many to list here. At best you should contact Hamburg's tourist information or a travel agency.

  • Hotel Alt-Nuernberg, Steintorweg 15, 20099 Hamburg, phone +49 40 246024
  • Hotel Engel, Niendorfer Straße 55, 22529 Hamburg, phone +49 40 554260
  • Hotel Königshof, Pulverteich 18, 20099 Hamburg, phone +49 40 2840740, fax +49 40 28407474, [email protected]; gay people welcome - run by an all-male couple.
  • Hotel tourist, , [0] 40 / 9957
  • Hotel Victoria, Lise-Meitner, [0] 40 / 3515
  • Hotel National, Ringstr., [0] 40 / 12934
  • Hotel Monopol, Diebsweg, [0] 40 / 14847
  • Ramada, Jahnstr. , [0] 40 / 21952
  • Hotel tourist, Schönfeldstrasse , [0] 40 / 12433
  • Hotel Columbus, Am Hackteufel, [0] 40 / 2992
  • Intercontinental, Sendlingerstr., [0] 40 / 7028
  • Le Meridien, Haupstr, [0] 40 / 31961

Splurge

The Atlantic and the Vier Jahreszeiten share the prize of Hamburg's best hotels over the last one hundred years. Emperors and movie stars have stayed there - and James Bond (Tomorrow never dies, 1997).

  • East Hotel, Simon-von-Utrecht Str. 31, Designhotel with one of the best lounges/bars in town. Very trendy & stylish
  • Gastwerk Hotel Hamburg, Daimlerstrasse 67, (), [4]. SGastwerk Hotel in Hamburg is built in a former municipal gasworks building. Oversized chairs, light natural colors and soothing textures soften the rough industrial structure.

On the floor

There is a Church mission on the West side of the main train station, mainly for homeless people and people with problems. But it's very clean, people are friendly there and if one is humble and polite, there is a good chance you can enter to chat (even in English) and sleep there on the floor in your sleeping bag. The night shift opens the place at midnight and everyone has to leave before seven in the morning.
Nevertheless, as a traveller, you should contribute some money to run the volunteer's service or at the very least offer some help. Remember: This is not a place for the unprepared traveller and definitely no hotel!

Contact

Free WLAN access available in various locations. See HOTSPOT HAMBURG

A Virtual Reality tour features over 20 great sights throughout Hamburg.

Views on the city from students taking a German language course in Hamburg

Stay safe

In the area around the Mönckebergstrasse, main station, on the Reeperbahn and on crowded escalators, watch out for pocket-picking. The Reeperbahn is the quarter with the most dense police presence in Germany, nevertheless make absolutely sure you avoid arguments. They won't get you anything but possibly assaulted. Keep distance from demonstrations unless you're involved, both leftist groups and the Hamburg police are known for heavy reactions.

Keep in mind that the Hamburg police wears blue uniforms unlike the federal german police and many of the other state police forces in Germany, which still wear green uniforms.

Bathing in the Elbe river is possible, but of course, keep out of the way of ships. Furthermore stay away from structures in the river and absolutely avoid the area of about 50 meters around those reaching into the river. Strong underwater swirls going down as deep as 10 to 15 meters even close to the beach may pull even the strongest swimmers below surface.

When staying on a beach down the river, place yourself several meters away from the water and keep an eye on children playing in or near the water. Container ships passing by sometimes create surprisingly large waves that not only wet your feet on the beach but may also pull you into the Elbe.

Cope

Religious services

Holy mass in Hamburg Catholic churches:

St. Marien, Domkirche (catholic „cathedral“), Danziger Str. 60 (St. Georg, near to central station).[20] Sun: 8:30, 10:00, 12:00 (portug.), 15:00 (croatic), 18:15; Mon-Sat: 18:15; Thu: 9:30

St. Elisabeth, Oberstr. 65 (district Harvestehude).[21] Sat: 18:00; Sun: 10:00, 12:00 (engl.), 17:30 (span.), 19:30 (3rd Sun only); Tue, Thu, Fri: 19:00; Wed: 15:00

St. Ansgar („kleiner Michel“), Michaelisstr. 5 (district Neustadt).[22] Sun: 9:30, 11:30, 15:30 (tagalog), 19:30; Mon, Fri: 18:30; Wed: 9:30, 19:00 (tagalog)

Index of all Catholic churches in the archdiocesis of Hamburg [23]

Get out

Both North Sea and Baltic Sea beaches are reachable within an hour by car, railway or bus.

  • Lübeck (Luebeck) - The city borders the Baltic Sea. The old city (Altstadt) survived from mediaeval times and is part of the UNESCO World Heritage List. About 60km northeast of Hamburg, direct trains leave from main station every hour (timetable).
  • Lüneburg - A city in Lower Saxony, about 50km southeast of Hamburg. Like Lübeck, Lüneburg's old town has kept a medieval look with old buildings and narrow streets. The town is situated in the beautiful Lüneburger Heide. South of Hamburg, direct trains leave from main station every hour (timetable).
  • Sylt - An island in the north sea. This is where celebrities and wannabes spend their weekends. Trains leave at Hamburg-Altona station (timetable). Planes from Fuhlsbüttel airport [24].
  • Helgoland - Germany's most off-shore North Sea island. Reachable by express ferry from St. Pauli Landungsbrücken [25]
  • Altes Land - The region is the biggest connected fruit growing area of Central Europe and the one the furthest north in the world. Altes Land is an area of marshland south of the river Elbe in Hamburg and Lower Saxony around the old towns of Stade, Buxtehude and Jork. A characteristic feature is the richly-decorated farmhouses with their elaborate gateways.
  • Ahrensburg - Ahrensburg is a northeastern suburb of Hamburg, situated in Stormarn district. Its outstanding sight is the Renaissance castle dating from 1595. Ahrensburg is easily accessible by car and train (Hamburg public transport).
  • Sankt Peter-Ording - Germany's most popular tourist target by the sea. Features a broad surfer's beach and stilt houses. Easily accessible by car (Autobahn 23, about 120km) and train (timetable)
  • Kiel - Kiel's main tourist attraction is the "Kieler Woche" (=Kiel Week) at the end of June, the largest sailing event of the world and one of Germany's largest festivals. Trains to Kiel leave at least once per hour from Hamburg main station (timetable) and need about an hour. A trip to Kiel on the Autobahn (A7) takes about an hour, too.
This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!