Hamburg Travel Guide
The somewhat scandalous North Sea port of Hamburg is one of Germany’s most diverse and intriguing cities, as well as the second largest in the country. Its numerous canals earned it the nickname ‘Venice of the north’, and with over 50 percent of the city covered in parks and water, it’s a truly wonderful destination.
With a bustling harbor filled with sailors and tourists, and a strangely harmonious blend of steel and glass buildings mixed among medieval Baroque architecture, Hamburg creates a very unique atmosphere. The maze of lakes, rivers and canals that crisscross the city add a special character rarely seen in German cities; and its title as the ‘greenest city in Europe‘ is well deserved.
Hamburg is not a compact city that can be explored on foot, so you’ll need to use the public transportation to get around. Central Hamburg’s Alster lake is the best place to start your explorations, as it’s flanked by highlights such as the famous Jungfernstieg shopping street and many important historical sites. St Pauli is the hub of Hamburg’s notorious nightlife, where the seedy meets the needy. But it’s all good fun. The harbor is the ideal spot for catching the maritime character of the city.
Carl Hagenback’s Tierpark: one of Europe’s finest zoos proves that Hamburg is more than just prostitutes and topless shows in the St Pauli district.
Hauptkirche St Michaelis: northern Germany’s finest Baroque church also offers the best views of the city from its copper towers; and the underground crypts aren’t bad either.
Kunsthalle: northern Germany’s premier art gallery has an incredible range of work from 14th century altar pieces to Andy Warhol classics.
Jungfernstieg: Hamburg is a shopper’s haven, and this central street is known throughout Europe as a destination for serious shoppers with its high-end boutiques and seemingly endless line of shops.
Reeperbahn (St Pauli District): commercialized sex reaches new heights of professionalism and debauchery in Hamburg’s premier red-light district, where exotic theater covers every genre and working women wander the strip like ants.
Wallringpark: four separate parks come together to create the perfect outdoor environment full of gardens, recreation areas and walking trails.