Top 12 Things You Must Do While In Hamburg
Throughout our time in Asia we often would run into a lot of different travelers from Europe. We always would ask them where they were from and also what city they would recommend visiting. The number one thing mostly all Europeans told us that came as a surprise was that when visiting Germany, we had to see Hamburg. So of course we knew when traveling through Europe we had to go to Hamburg! Well we had the privilege this last weekend of visiting Hamburg and our consensus is… Hamburg, Germany is definitely worth visiting!
Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany and is a very important port city. In fact it is Europes 3rd largest port thanks to its location right on the River Elbe. Located in Western Germany, Hamburg has a series of different beautiful canals running throughout the city particularly in Speicherstat. During WW, because of how crucial Hamburg was for receiving shipments, it was bombed very heavily by the allied forces.
A unique aspect of Hamburg is that half the city was bombed and rebuilt after ww2, and in the other half remains the old buildings from long ago, which creates a perfect harmony of old and new architecture. Making Hamburg a perfect place to visit for anyone.
Do they speak English in Germany?
We noticed that the younger generation in Germany generally speaks English and the older generation speaks enough English for you to communicate basic things such as ordering at a restaurant. When we visited Hamburg we thought it was so cheap, this however was just due to us coming from Scandinavia. Hamburg prices fall in line with the rest of Europe although their public transit tickets are cheaper.
Without further-ado here are our top 13 things to do while in Hamburg!
Visit Unesco Weltkulturerbe Speicherstadt
Weltkulturerbe Speicherstadt is the best place to take a picture in Hamburg. This is a UNESCO heritage site because it is part of the old industrial area of Hamburg. With the red brick and canals running through, this area is both rich culturally and beautiful in its own rite. At this spot on the bridge you can see where the canal converges around a small cafe. The area of Speicherstadt in general is really fun for just walking around.
Get Some Fresh Bread At Braugasthaus Altes Mädchen
A large brewery, restaurant, and bakery. Braugasthaus Altes Mädche is located in a red brick hall that use to be in use as a 19th century animal market. Outside you can find a nice garden that on weekends is usually full for events. Today it houses a delicious bakery with some of the tastiest breads you will try.
Visit Elbphilharmonie and Get A Great city view
One Of The Many Views From Outside Up Top
One of the newest buildings in Hamburg is the Elbphilharmonie concert hall. The Elbphilharmonie is a work of art itself as it combines masterful architecture, with amazing acoustics inside. It also is where the 2016 G20 summit was held. During the week and weekend for free you can go up 37 meters in this interesting building to get a beautiful birds-eye view of the city.
See The World At Miniatur Wunderland
Mini Hamburg Model
The Swiss Alps
Don’t have time to see all of Europe? No problem! You can see it all in a couple hours at Miniatur Wunderland. With famous model sized cities and trains running throughout Minitaur Wunderland it is one impressive sight to see! Zach and I had so much fun seeing the smaller and detailed models of all the places we have been, and all the places we hope to go to one day. We spent 2 hours seeing all the many different models.Make sure to buy tickets online as tickets can be quickly sold out!
If partying is your thing than a visit to Reeperbahn is a must! Reeperbahn is the best red light district in Europe behind Amsterdam, there are many different club and bars to choose from. Even when in the morning at 9am coming back from the fish market partying was still going on.
See Rathausmarkt (Hamburg City Hall)
One of the more iconic buildings in Hamburg, you should definitely visit the city hall. With a beautiful copper roof and gothic inspired architecture, it is a sight to see. Constructed and finished being built in the late 1900’s. Rathausmarkt is the assembly place for both the senate and parliament of Hamburg.
Go Inside Elbe Tunnel
A tunnel built directly under the elbe river in 1911 to provide dock workers a more direct route to the southern banks of the elbe, connecting Landundsbrücken to the Port Of Hamburg. With both public transit routes, car routes, and pedestrian paths. Today the elbe tunnel is one of the top tourist things to visit and do a quick walk through of while in Hamburg. The impressive elbe tunnel spans 1,389 feet and was Europe’s first river tunnel. If going here around lunchtime, Landundsbrücken has a bunch of different places to get some delicious fish and shrimp sandwiches!
Here The Darker History Of Hamburg at Hamburg Dungeon
Experience the history of Hamburg through a much scarier lens! (this might not a place for children or families) Hamburg Dungeon brings amazing storytelling to the darker side of Hamburg’s history with full on sets, special effects, and actors. It even has a couple of underground rides! It’s one of the leading attractions in Hamburg and located in the same building as Miniature Wunderland. This is another place you will want to purchase your tickets online.
Get Some Amazing Food At The Fish Market
Fried Fish Sandwich
Crab Sandwich at Hamburg Fish Market
Open every Sunday morning at the Hamburg Fish Market you can get some of the most delicious fresh fish and seafood. In addition to seafood you can find live music, flowers, fruits, vegetables, cured meats, cheeses, and more. The fish market is truly a place to be where early risers enjoy some great food, with those who are still awake from partying the night before. If at the fish market you have to try the fried fish sandwiches and crab sandwiches with garlic sauce, they are amazing! Hours vary for the fish market so double check before you go.Hamburg Fish Market Hours are every Sunday Summer hours are 5:00am-9:30am and winter hours are 7:00am-9:30 am.
Visit The U-Boat Museum
Not an actual u-boat but rather a submarine. Go inside a soviet union submarine that was active for 25 years! Bought in 2002 and transported to Hamburg it now sits in the harbor right at the fish market. The u-boat museum is open everyday from 9am-8pm and on Sundays 11am-8pm. This submarine has now been converted into a museum where you can go inside and see the way people use to live on these submarines and still do today. If you are claustrophobic I would recommend skipping this museum as a submarine has very close quarters and low ceilings.
Have a Unique Experience At Dialogue In The dark
One of the more interesting experiences we have seen anywhere while traveling is Dialogue in the Dark. It is a place to experience how the life of those who are vision impaired are. At dialogue in the dark you are guided in complete darkness by blind guides. In this experience you will be taken through daily tasks but experiencing as if you were blind and how those who are vision impaired navigate their environments. Some examples of these include enjoying a walk in the park, take a boat cruise or visiting a café in specially designed darkened rooms. With a few different dialogue in the dark locations worldwide, if you find yourself in Hamburg give it a try!
Try Labskaus a Hamburg Delicacy
While we were so excited to try the Schnitzel in Germany we quickly learned that schnitzel is in fact an Austrian creation. Of course that didn’t stop us and we actually had some delicious schnitzel! The real Hamburg culinary specialty we tried was Labskaus. Labskaus is a traditional Hamburg dish and is made of corned beef, beets, potatoes, and fish. All mashed together with the fish on the side. I actually enjoyed this meal although, I wouldn’t say I necessarily would crave it. The restaurant we tried it at offered unlimited so after our first plate we could get more. I would be lying if I said I got a second plate, this was a lot of food!
Some LOTS Of The Fritz-Kola
Fritz-Kola is a Hamburg soda company that makes many different amazingly delicious sodas. Their cola is seriously so much better than Coca Cola and you should definetly try it when in Hamburg you can find it at any store and many restaurants.
Visiting Hamburg? Let us know how you enjoy this amazing city or if you have any questions by leaving them in the comments below!