A wide view, lots of fresh air and light - hardly any other city has so many sights and places worth seeing as Hamburg. Whether traditionally at the old fishermen's cottages in the Treppenviertel (lit. stairs quarter), on the Elbe beach with a view of container ships or on the newly built promenades on the banks of the Elbe and in HafenCity - life and the harbour meet everywhere in Hamburg.
Where cargo ships used to unload their goods at the docks, HafenCity Hamburg, a completely new district on 150-hectare of former harbour area, has been growing for ten years now - right in the middle of the city. Visitors to HafenCity are most attracted by its miles of new waterfront walks. A new traditional ship harbour has been built in Sandtorhafen harbour and restaurants, cafés and bars invite visitors to linger just as much as the spacious Magellan and Marco Polo Terraces. An unmissable lighthouse project at the western tip of HafenCity Hamburg is the spectacular construction of the Elbphilharmonie, which opened in January 2017. On the former Kaispeicher A, Hamburg's new landmark is rising to the sky. Locals and visitors alike can look forward to one of the best concert halls in the world and a breathtaking view of the city, harbour and Elbe from the airy "Plaza", which is open to the public.
Adventure worlds behind brick facades
Beautiful brick facades, curved bridges and picturesque perspectives - this is how the historic Speicherstadt, situated between HafenCity and Hamburg's city centre and crossed by water arms, presents itself. A walk over the cobblestone pavement of this listed warehouse complex reveals that carpets, coffee, tea and spices are still stored here to some extent.
Enjoying a stroll at the edge of the harbour
From the promenade along the Baumwall to the Landungsbrücken (landing bridges), the view falls on colourfully flagged sailing and motor boats in the "City-Sportboothafen". Right next to the Überseebrücke, where the large passenger ships once docked, you will find the former general cargo vessel Cap San Diego, built in 1961. The ship is the world's last museum cargo-ship of its size ready to sail. Diagonally opposite is the berth of the lavishly restored three-mast barque Rickmer Rickmers. This real Cape Horn sailboat can also be visited from the stem to the steering wheel.
The tower of St. Michael's Church, which makes the skyline of the city so unmistakable, offers an impressive view of the lively hustle and bustle in the streets and at the harbour. Twice a day, at 10 a.m. and at 9 p.m., the sounds of the trumpet players sound from Hamburg's landmark, affectionately called "Michel", in all four directions. For more than 300 years this tradition has been cultivated by the 132-metre-high tower and offers a moment of silence and pause for thought for many Hamburgers.
Hamburg Art Gallery
If the weather is not ideal, visit the Hamburger Kunsthalle. This is one of the most important and largest art museums in Germany. As one of the few museums, it houses art from seven centuries, from the Middle Ages to the present day. The collection focuses on North German medieval paintings, 17th century Dutch paintings, 19th century German paintings and Classical Modernism. The collection of contemporary art contains important complexes of works by German and international artists. The Hamburger Kunsthalle attracts international attention with its top-class special exhibitions, which attract thousands of visitors to the Hanseatic city every year.
Travel time: 90 minutes / 130 km (to the town hall)