20 Best Things to do in Hamburg: Top places to visit

Hamburk / co navštívit a vidět v Hamburku / průvodce Hamburg

Hamburg is a unique city full of things to see. We have prepared a detailed guide with tips on the most beautiful places and things to do in Hamburg.

Hamburg is located in the very north of Germany, near the border with Denmark. This makes it different from other German places.

The Scandinavian influence has seeped into the local environment and you will get a completely different experience than when you visit Berlin or Munich. After all, in what other German city do you say “Moin” instead of the usual “Guten Tag”?

Today we’ll show you the best places and sights to see and visit in Hamburg to make an itinerary for 1, 2 or 3 days in Hamburg. We’ll also add tips how to enjoy your visit to Hamburg (how to get there, public transport, ferries, food, prices, accommodation).


With more than 1.8 million inhabitants, Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany. It is located in the very north of the country and is the third largest port in Europe (after Rotterdam and Antwerp). This is unbelievable considering that Hamburg is located on the Elbe River and the North Sea is more than 100 km away.

Interesting facts about Hamburg

Canals and arms of the Elbe River weave through the city, connected by bridges. There are 2,300 of them, i.e. more than Venice and Amsterdam combined. There are also 2 large urban lakes, the Binnenalster and the even larger Außenalster.

Hamburg is multicultural and open to other nationalities. There is a strong Turkish community and many Portuguese and Spaniards have come here in the past to work. As a result, there are a number of great Portuguese restaurants (as well as Spanish and Brazilian restaurants – we’ll tell you where to go for a good meal in this article).

The Hamburger DOM festival takes place three times a year in Hamburg (March, July, November). It always lasts a month. During this period you can enjoy hundreds of fairground attractions, delicious food and beer.

Did you know that the popular hamburger owes its name to Hamburg? I always thought it was just a coincidence, but in fact they used to bring minced meat in patties from the city. This is how the hamburger got its name.

Hamburg / things to do in Hamburg

The most beautiful places and sights to see in Hamburg

In this list, we’ll show you the places to see in Hamburg. From the vast harbour and the warehouse district of Speicherstadt to the historic centre with its magnificent town hall.

Some call Hamburg the most beautiful city in the world. I’ll leave that to everyone’s judgment. But the fact is that Hamburg is unique. With its brick Gothic, canals and bustling harbour, it is a city like no other in the world.

To make it easier to create an itinerary, the places and sights to see in Hamburg are listed in order of their proximity to each other. This gives you a rough idea of where to find what in Hamburg.


There are plenty of interesting places to visit in Hamburg. But Speicherstadt is at the top of their game. This is exactly what makes Hamburg unique and famous throughout Europe.

Under the Speicherstadt you can imagine the largest continuous warehouse complex in the world, which is still partly used today for storing carpets, spices, coffee or cocoa.

Hamburg / things to do in Hamburg
Speicherstadt / things to do in Hamburg
Speicherstadt / things to do in Hamburg
Speicherstadt / things to do in Hamburg
Speicherstadt / things to do in Hamburg
Speicherstadt / things to do in Hamburg

There are probably few places in the world where you can find such a sought-after industrial location. Even the famous designer Karl Lagerfeld has chosen Speicherstadt in the past to shoot his collection.

The warehouses were built on oak pillars at the turn of the 19. and 20th century and are connected by several smaller bridges. You can walk around freely and constantly discover interesting corners.

The best views are afforded by the Wilhelminenbrücke (famous for the oriental carpet on the ground) and the Poggenmühlenbrücke on the other side of the Speicherstadt, overlooking the water castle (now home to a restaurant).

View of the Speicherstadt from Poggenmühlenbrücke Hamburg
View of the Speicherstadt from Poggenmühlenbrücke

TIP: A boat cruise gives you a completely different perspective of the Speicherstadt and takes you to secret places you wouldn’t be able to reach by land.

The Speicherstadt is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the Kontorhausviertel. The reason is their huge importance for the rapid international trade growth at the turn of the 19. and 20th century.

Miniature Wunderland

The year was 2002 when twins Gerrit and Frederik Braun decided to create the world’s largest miniature railway. Just a year later, their dream began to materialize (despite struggles with investors and finances).

And today, Miniatur Wunderland is collecting one Guinness World Record after another.

Miniature Wunderland

The railway is perfectly thought out to the last detail and is constantly being improved and expanded. You can find a small version of Hamburg, the Matterhorn in Switzerland, Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon.

More than 1,000 trains run along the nearly 16 km long tracks, which are lined with over 4,300 buildings, 10,000 cars, 137,000 trees and nearly 300,000 figures.

Day and night alternate every 15 minutes.

Miniatur Wunderland is located in the Speicherstadt district. The queues are really long. Booking in advance for a specific time will save you time. Admission is €20 (€19 with Hamburg Card) and €12 for children under 15. Opening hours vary according to the season. In addition, various events are often held. Book here.

Elbphilharmonie and HafenCity

The Elbphilharmonie ( Elphi for short) is a concert hall that has only been standing in Hamburg for a few years. Thanks to its unique architecture, however, it immediately became a symbol of Hamburg and one of the most photographed places.

The lower part is made of bricks, followed by a top made of glass. Inside you will find the longest escalator in Western Europe. It is curved and runs through a tunnel with glass filters.

Elbphilharmonie and HafenCity
Elbphilharmonie and HafenCity / things to do in Hamburg

The Elphi includes a viewing platform, the Plaza, with 360° views of the harbour. The lookout is open daily from 10:00-24:00 and admission is free. However, advance booking is mandatory. You can make a reservation on the spot, but in high season or on weekends it is better to make to book online (with an additional fee of € 2). No reservation is needed for children under 3 years old.

If you want to know more about the architecture of Elphi or other interesting facts (why, for example, the building cost 11 times more than expected), check out the guided tour.

The Elbphilharmonie is located in the modern HafenCity district, adjacent to the Speicherstadt. HafenCity has been growing dynamically in recent years. This is one of the largest urban development projects in Europe.

View of HafenCity from Marco-Polo-Terrassen
View of HafenCity from Marco-Polo-Terrassen

Museums in Hamburg

Hamburg has something for everyone. Art museums and non-traditional museums that will attract young and old alike. For example, the Spice Museum, the Coffee Museum or the Customs Museum. All are located in the Speicherstadt area.

Just a short distance away, in HafenCity, lies Maritime Museum. Amazing museum with Phoenician galleries, Viking and modern ships.

The Hamburger Kunsthalle is located near the main train station. The art gallery, which houses a collection so vast that it is spread over 3 buildings.


The Kontorhausviertel is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the Spiecherstadt warehouse district. And what makes the Kontorhausviertel special? It is the first office district in Europe with 20th century office buildings.

One of the most interesting buildings is the Chilehaus. A 10-storey building that photographers and tourists flock here for. It’s shaped like the bow of a ship and is amazingly photogenic. Restaurants, cafés and shops can be found in the courtyard.

Chilehaus Hamburg
Chilehaus Hamburg

Do you love chocolate? Then don’t miss the Chocoversum Chocolate Museum a short walk away. Here you can learn everything about chocolate and make your own chocolate bar.

Altstadt and Rathaus

Hamburg’s Old Town is surrounded by the magnificent Town Hall. It was built in the style of historicism and has an inner courtyard with a fountain.

Rathaus Hamburg / sights in Hamburg
Rathaus Hamburg / sights in Hamburg

You can only visit the Rathaus during a guided tour, which is conducted in German and English. More information here.

In front of the Rathaus is the Rathausmarkt, where various events are held throughout the year. Standing here, you will see several interesting things. The brick tower of St. Peter’s Church, which is right on the Mönckebergstraße shopping street.

But the more interesting part is on the left side:

Alster Lakes and Jungfernstieg promenade

The left side of the Rathausmarkt is lined by the Alster River with its historic colonnade, which shines white in the surroundings. On the other side is the Jungfernstieg promenade. It divides the Alster River and Lake Binnenalster.

Rathaus Hamburg / sights in Hamburg
Alster Colonnade / Sights in Hamburg

Lake Binnenalster is famous for its fountain, which reaches a height of up to 60 m (the fountain is open from March to November). There is a path with benches, restaurants and cafés around the lake.

Behind the colonnade, the shopping area extends all the way to Gänsemarkt Square. If you want to shop in Hamburg, this is the place to go.

Binnenalster / Things to do in Hamburg
Binnenalster / Things to do in Hamburg

On the other side of the Binnenalster is the even larger Lake Außenalster. A place where locals relax. There are parks, trails, restaurants and cafes.

On both lakes you can take a boat ride (there are several stations) or rent a pedal boat or canoe (15-20 € per hour).

Hauptkirche St. Michaelis

Hauptkirche St. Michaelis is one of the most important churches in Hamburg and the most important Baroque church in Germany. Locals call him Michel for short.

Hauptkirche St. Michael / Sights in Hamburg
Hauptkirche St. Michael / Sights in Hamburg

Saint Michael is the patron saint of sailors. The church is relatively modern and was built in the early 20th century because it burned down twice in the previous centuries.

Like other Protestant churches, it is not as ornate, but still has a beautiful white interior with a crypt, organ and baptistery. And on the church tower is the largest church tower clock in all of Germany.

Hauptkirche St. Michael / Sights in Hamburg

If you climb the 452 steps (you can also take the elevator), you will reach the observation deck at 106 meters. One of the most popular things to visit in Hamburg.

Hauptkirche St. Michael / Sights in Hamburg
View from Hauptkirche St. Michael

Admission to the Hauptkirche St. Michaelis is €10 for everything or €8 for the observation deck only (with the Hamburg Card, admission to the observation deck is €6). Children 6-15 years old can enter for 5 €.

The opening hours of Hauptkirche St. Michaelis vary according to the season:

  • 1 May – 30 September 9:00-20:00
  • 1 October – 31 October 9:00-19:00
  • 1 November – 31 March 10:00-18:00
  • The last entry is always 30 minutes before the end of opening hours.
  • The church is closed during services and events.


Do you like magical nooks and crannies? Petrestraße is just the place to get excited about. It is located near the Großneumarkt. Take a walk along Neanderstraße, from which there is a turn off to Peterstraße.

Peterstraße / things to do in Hamburg
Peterstraße / things to do in Hamburg

Planten and Blomen

Planten un Blomen is nicknamed the green lungs of Hamburg. The 47-hectare botanical garden includes a Japanese garden and a rose garden. In addition, you will see fountains, waterfalls, playgrounds and other places where you can just contemplate and relax from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Japanese garden in Planten un Blomen
Japanese garden in Planten un Blomen

From May to October, a water light show takes place every evening.

Planten un Blomen is located north of the old town.

Mahnmal St. Nikolai

We’re moving south of Rathaus. The ruins of the Church of St. Nicholas, which today symbolizes a memorial to the victims of the Second World War. The church was damaged during the air raids in 1943, during which more than 34,000 people died in Hamburg.

View of Mahnmal St. Nikolai from Deichstraße
View of Mahnmal St. Nikolai from Deichstraße
Mahnmal St. Nikolai / sights in Hamburg
Mahnmal St. Nikolai / sights in Hamburg

Today the church of St. St. Nicholas Church serves as a museum and the tower has a viewing platform with a glass elevator.

Mahnmal St. Nikolai is open daily except Tuesdays from 10:00-18:00. Admission is 6 € and 4 € for children. With the Hamburg Card, the price is € 5.


Are you looking for a place where you can be instantly transported to old Hamburg? Deichstraße is located along the Nikolaifleet canal between the Altstadt and Speicherstadt districts. It is a pedestrianised street lined with historic townhouses with restaurants and shops. You can walk down to the pier and see the canal from a different perspective.

Deichstraße / things to do in Hamburg
Deichstraße / things to do in Hamburg

Port of Hamburg

The harbor is huge. To give you an idea – the area of the port is the same as that of Cologne, which is one of the largest cities in Germany. Every year, 13,000 ships dock in the port and shipping routes connect Hamburg with more than 900 ports.

Port of Hamburg
Port of Hamburg

Hamburg harbour is another place to visit in Hamburg. Without him, the visit would not have been complete. You can see it from land, but the best part is a boat ride.

Boating is one of the most popular activities in Hamburg so there are several types of cruises to choose from. They all depart from Landungsbrücken, which is one of Hamburg’s important transport hubs. Some cruises even allow to see the harbour after dark when everything is beautifully lit.

During the boat trip you will learn a lot of interesting facts and get a glimpse of hidden places.

Travelling on a budget? Take ferry 62, which will take you through the harbour. You will only see part of it, but it is still a great way to get a glimpse into the workings of one of the largest ports in the world.


Landungsbrücken is a floating pier with a 200-metre-long terminal, which you can recognise from afar thanks to its green domes. Located in the St. Pauli district.

View of Landungsbrücken from the Hamburg viewpoint
View of Landungsbrücken from the viewpoint
Landungsbrücken / things to do in Hamburg
Landungsbrücken / things to do in Hamburg

It’s a busy place where city traffic crosses and almost all ferries stop here. In addition, cruise ships sail from here.

In recent years, this has become an increasingly popular promenade from which to watch cruise and container ships. Locals call Landungsbrücken the harbour of the world.

In addition, there is also the museum ship Rickmer Rickmers and many restaurants and cafes.

Museum ship Rickmer Rickmers

After Landungsbrücken, a bridge crosses the road to reach the U-Bahn station. Next to it are stairs that take you up to a viewpoint from which you will have the harbour in the palm of your hand. There is even a small vineyard.


The Elbtunnel, an amazing technical monument that connects St. Pauli and Steinwerder on the other side of the Elbe. It was the first river tunnel in Europe, built in 1911 and used by workers in shipyards and docks.

Enter the tunnel from Landungsbrücken – look for the building with the large grey dome. You can go down into the tunnel by stairs or take the passenger or freight elevator. The passenger elevator is open 24/7, the freight elevators are open 6:00-20:00 during the week and 10:00-18:00 on weekends.

Elbtunnel Hamburg
Elbtunnel Hamburg

The elevator or stairs take you to a depth of 24 metres, from where you can walk (or cycle) through a 426-metre tunnel. On the other side, in Steinwerder, there is a viewpoint overlooking Landungsbrücken.

View from Steinwerder to Landungsbrücken
View from Steinwerder to Landungsbrücken


If you continue from Landungsbrücken along the banks of the Elbe, you will reach the Fischmarkt.

The Fischmarkt is a fish market that takes place in the harbour from 18th century. Besides fish, you can also buy other local products here. The market is always held early on Sunday mornings between 5:00-9:30am (6:00am in winter).

Fischmarkt - fish auction building
Fischmarkt – fish auction building

The Fischmarkt takes place in front of the historic fish auction building Fischauktionhalle. It’s closed now, but it used to be alive early in the morning – music, beer and a lively atmosphere. At night you had fun in the Reeperbahn not far from here (see below) and then came here to finish the night.

In addition, there is also the U-Boat Museum, where you can learn what life was once like on a Soviet submarine.


If you continue along the Elbe, you will reach the Dockland lookout in about a quarter of an hour. Or you can just take ferry 62 – then it’s just one stop.

Dockland Hamburg viewpoint
Dockland Lookout

The Dockland Lookout is located on the roof of an office building, which is special because it is shaped like a boat. You’ll be able to spot it from a distance. You can go up the outdoor stairs, which are beautifully lit in the evening. The viewpoint is free of charge.

Above the promenade, you will see a raised park from where you will have the harbour in the palm of your hand.


The Reeperbahn in St. Pauli is a well-known entertainment centre. This is where the sailors used to come to have fun after they arrived in Hamburg.

If you walk around here in the daytime, you won’t find anything that interesting. But as evening falls, the Reeperbahn turns into one of the liveliest areas in Hamburg. Bars, clubs, pubs, restaurants, cabarets, sex shops or the Panopticum wax museum.

Reeperbahn Hamburg

Have you heard of the red light district in Amsterdam? And did you know that Hamburg also has a sinful street? It is called Herbertstraße and is located right in the Reeperbahn. Young people under 18 and women are not allowed. It’s heavily guarded and gated.

The Reeperbahn is famous for another reason. This is where the Beatles became famous when they played 99 days in a row in a local bar.

If you want to see the best of the Reeperbahn and learn a lot of interesting facts, head to a guided tour with a local guide . You will visit the Zur Ritze bar, where Mike Tyson and the Klitschko brothers used to box. Tours are available mainly for groups of up to 10 people (the price is set accordingly).

Zur Ritze

Beaches in Hamburg

Hamburg has several sandy beaches along the banks of the Elbe. They are open to the public and popular all year round. For walking or just for a picnic.

You can get here by S-Bahn (line S1 and from there about 15-20 minutes on foot), buses or ferry 62.

The nearest beach is Elbstrand in Oevelgönne, a short walk from which boats, sailboats, steamers and more are on display. It is only 3 ferry stops from Landungsbrücken.

Elbe beach Hamburg
Elbe beach

Continuing on, the ferry will take you to the Blankenese district, known for its stepped neighbourhood with narrow streets and beautiful villas.


Helgoland are islands in the North Sea, which are not located directly in Hamburg, but they are perfect for a day trip. You can visit Helgoland on a cruise from which you can see the red sandstone cliffs lining Helgoland. You will then have a few hours to explore the harbour with its iconic colourful houses.

Helgoland / top places to visit in Hamburg

TOP 10 must-see places in Hamburg

Do you have limited time and want to visit the best Hamburg has to offer? Below you will find our TOP 10 places to see and not to miss in Hamburg:

  • Speicherstadt
  • Miniature Wunderland
  • Elbphilharmonie
  • Rathaus
  • Jungfernstieg Promenade
  • Hauptkirche St. Michaelis
  • Deichstraße and Mahnmal St. Nikolai
  • Landungsbrücken
  • Elbtunnel
  • Fischmarkt

Where to stay in Hamburg

LUXURY: The Westin Hamburg: If you’re looking for the best accommodation in Hamburg, this 5-star hotel is the right choice. Located right in the Elbphilharmonie building, it offers fantastic views, modern rooms and quality service.

The Westin Hamburg / Where to stay in Hamburg

UPPER CLASS: Hotel Volksschule: A design hotel that was renovated from the original school. The hotel offers a rich breakfast, clean and modern rooms with private bathrooms, cheap parking and a strategic location close to the metro.

MID-RANGE: Prizeotel: Popular hotel in the city centre, offering stylishly furnished rooms with full facilities and at a good price. The hotel is close to the train station and has its own car park.

MID-RANGE: Apartment-hotel Hamburg Mitte: This hotel offers modern and cosy accommodation in rooms or apartments with kitchenette (ideal for couples and families). Located in the east of the city, only 25 minutes by public transport to the city centre. Rich breakfast, restaurant, private parking.

Apartment-hotel Hamburg Mitte / Where to stay in Hamburg

BUDGET: Ibis Budget Hotel: Popular hotel chain that relies on smaller, but practically designed rooms with private bathrooms, where you will find everything for a relaxing holiday. Metro and bus stations are a short walk away.

Things to see in Hamburg – Map

HOW TO USE THIS MAP: Above you will find a detailed map of Hamburg with tips on sights to visit. Click at the top left of the map to see separate layers with highlighted locations. You can hide and show the different layers or click on the icons on the map to see the names of the places I mention in my guide to Hamburg, Germany. If you want to save the map, star it. For a larger version, click on the icon in the upper right corner.

Hamburg Card: How to save in Hamburg

Hamburg Card is the official tourist card that gives you unlimited travel around Hamburg (S-Bahn, U-Bahn, buses, ferries) and discounts to more than 150 places, attractions and sights in Hamburg.

You can buy the Hamburg Card purchase for 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 days depending on how many you need. Prices start at €11.90 and are valid for 1 adult and up to 3 children aged 6-14. The longer you buy the card for, the more you can save.

The card is valid from midnight to 6am the next day.

Once you buy online, you don’t have to go anywhere. You can print the card or download the Hamburg – Erleben&Sparen app by entering the code. You will receive all information including the code in your email.

After that, just present your card at the entrance and you will automatically get a discount.

How to get to Hamburg

Hamburg is very well connected to other German and larger European cities – by air, car, train and bus.

By air

Hamburg International Airport (HAM) is located north of the city. The green S-Bahn S1 line takes you to the main train station in 30 minutes. But you can continue on and take the same line all the way downtown and on to St. Pauli and Altona.

Trains and buses

The train is an environmentally friendly and convenient way to get to Hamburg. In addition to the trains, there are also numerous bus connections to Hamburg.

The main train and bus station of Hamburg Hbf lies to the north-east of the centre. You can find current train connections on the Deutsche Bahn website or with local train operators.

Approximate time connections between Hamburg and selected European cities:

  • Berlin (direct train 1 h 46 min)
  • Prague (direct train 6 h 46 min)
  • Copenhagen (direct train 4 h 35 min)
  • Dresden (direct train 4 h 18 min)

Hamburg transport

The Hamburg area and the surrounding municipalities are served by S-Bahn trains (6 suburban lines marked S) and U-Bahn underground (4 lines marked U), buses and ferries (buses and ferries are marked with numbers).

Transport in Hamburg is reliable and will take you virtually anywhere. Where the S-Bahn and U-Bahn do not reach, buses or ferries operate again. Public transport is provided by hvv.

HAmburg transport / Hamburg public transport subway map
Map of U-Bahn and S-Bahn in Hamburg
Hamburg transport / Hamburg public transport
Map of ferries in Hamburg

Download the Hamburg public transport map here. You can find the ferry map at this link.

There are 6 ferry lines in total – all stopping at St. Pauli Landungsbrücken, where there is also a stop for the S-Bahn and U-Bahn. The most common ferries are ferry 62 to Finkenwerder, ferry 72 to Elbphilharmonie and ferry 75 to Steinwerder.

The S-Bahn and U-Bahn run on weekdays between 4:30 and 1:00 and unlimited on weekends. Night buses operate on the main routes at night.

Types of tickets

Hamburg and its surroundings are divided into zones – see map. Ticket prices vary accordingly. The city itself, including the airport, falls within Zone AB (sometimes also called Zone 1-2). This area is called Greater Hamburg.

The same tickets apply for all modes of transport (buses, cable cars, trams). Below you will find the ticket types for zone 1-2 that you will use the most as a visitor:

  • single ticket for 3,60 € (children 6-14 years old for 1,30 €)
  • all-day ticket valid from 9:00 for 7.10 €
  • day ticket for 8,40 € (children 6-14 years old for 2,50 €)
  • group ticket for up to 5 people for 13,40 €
  • short trips for 1,90 €

Adult day tickets include up to 3 children aged 6-14 years. Children up to 6 years old always travel free of charge.

Tickets can be bought online, on the hvv app or in standard vending machines.

Hamburg is very large. Depending on where you’re staying, you’ll probably use public transport more often here than in other cities.

One of the options is also Hamburg CARD which gives you unlimited transport.

Hop-on hop-off buses

You can explore the most beautiful places in Hamburg hop-on hop-off buses . These run along a pre-selected route through well-known and lesser-known places you might not normally visit.

You can get on and off the bus at any time. As many times a day as you need. Buses run frequently throughout the day.

It’s a great option if you want to get an idea of where things are in Hamburg. Or, for example, if you are travelling with small children.


Hamburg is one of the most cyclist-friendly cities. There are trails and plenty of parks where you can ride your bike.

The best app for renting a bike is StadtRAD. Download the app, find the nearest station (there are 120 in total in Hamburg) and pay for what you’ve actually driven.

If you can return the bike within 30 minutes, you get a free rental. After half an hour, the rental costs €0.08 for 1 minute or €12 for the whole day.

Prices in Hamburg

You’ll pay around €13 for a meal in a cheap restaurant and around €60 for a 3-course dinner for two. The prices of basic foodstuffs are as follows:

  • Milk 1 l – 1,18 €
  • White bread 500 g – 2,22 €
  • Eggs 12 pcs – 3,45 €
  • Cheese 1 kg – 11,99 €
  • Chicken breast 1 kg – 9,23 €
  • Bananas 1 kg – 1,78 €
  • Water 1,5 l – 0,67 €
  • Potatoes 1 kg – 1,44 €

Where to eat in Hamburg

Hamburg has many options for good food. The strong Turkish community here guarantees excellent kebabs.

There are plenty of restaurants serving Portuguese and Spanish cuisine just off the Elbe Promenade – around Rambachstraße, Ditmar-Koel-Straße and in the surrounding streets.

Another district with excellent restaurants (Turkish, Portuguese, Italian and other cuisines) is Schanzenviertel.

In general, the cuisine in Hamburg is very varied. Even here, however, there are dishes that you can only get in Hamburg or northern Germany.

A popular soup is lobster soup with whipped cream. For the main course, try the seafaring dish Labskaus – a dish of potatoes, beef or salted meat, onions and beetroot. This is accompanied by ox eye, pickled cucumber and pickled herring.

For dessert (or breakfast), Franzbrötchen with lots of butter and cinnamon is a favourite. Or the Rote Grütze, a sweet dessert of red fruit and vanilla cream (or ice cream). You can also have a variety of cakes in Hamburg. Primarily apple, but cafes often offer other flavours (raspberry, cottage cheese and others). With coffee, it’s the perfect afternoon snack.

And what street food to try in Hamburg? Fischbrötchen are fish sandwiches where you have pickled herring, onions, pickles. Or Brathering, fried herring in a small baguette.

Currywurst or other sausages are also classics. And a beer to go with it. At the harbour overlooking the Elbe River, it is unbeatable.

Useful tips to enjoy Hamburg

Weather in Hamburg

The weather in Hamburg is fickle. One minute the sun is shining and the next the sky is overcast and a downpour starts. Think also that there is a cold and strong wind. As the saying goes: The north wind is harsh…An umbrella and an extra layer are almost always useful in Hamburg.

When to visit Hamburg

We’ve already given you an idea of what kind of weather you can expect in Hamburg. With this in mind, the best time to visit Hamburg is April-October.

During the summer months, you can enjoy swimming in the Elbe, paddle boating on the Alster lakes or strolling through the flowering gardens of Planten un Blomen. On the other hand, during the peak season from July to August, the number of tourists is the highest. If you’re travelling on a budget, prices are highest during this period.

The winters in Hamburg are cold, but on the other hand you can enjoy the local streets more for yourself. And at least you have an excuse to warm up in a cosy café for a cinnamon Franzbrötchen and coffee.

Is Hamburg safe?

Hamburg is generally a safe city. As elsewhere in the world, try to use your intuition and common sense. If you don’t feel good about something or someone, leave.

Watch out for pickpockets in popular areas, and beware of scams in the Reeperbahn area (this applies especially to men, who may be scammed by local women).

If you have any questions about our Hamburg travel guide, we’ll be happy to answer them in the comments below. Have a safe journey!

More information about Germany

GERMANY: Check out our article for more inspiration on what to visit in Germany.

BERLIN: Berlin has something for everyone – take your pick from our tips on what to see in Berlin.

Dresden: Dresden is one of the most beautiful cities in Germany. Get inspired with tips on sights and attractions to visit in Dresden.

BAVARIAN ALPS: Germany has carved out a beautiful part of the Alps for itself. What to do and what hiking trails to take in the Bavarian Alps can be found in a separate article.

Summary: What are the best things to do in Hamburg?

What are the top places to visit in Hamburg?

Some of the best sights to see in Hamburg include the warehouse district of Speicherstadt, the impressive Elbphilharmonie building with its view, the old town with its ornate town hall and the bustling harbour surrounded by historic buildings. Where else in the world will you see the first office district or walk through the first river tunnel in Europe. Hamburg has a lot of interesting places, which you can read more about in the article.

What to do in Hamburg?

There are so many great activities to do in Hamburg. Take a boat cruise and enjoy the view of the harbour, where up to 13,000 ships dock every year. Or rent pedal boats and take a ride through the canals around the historic Deichstraße or the Alster Lakes. Visit Miniatur Wunderland with the world’s largest mini railway or the Maritime Museum, where Viking dragon ships are on display.

How to get around Hamburg?

Very simply. Hamburg has a well thought-out public transport concept, which includes S-Bahn trains, U-Bahn metro, ferries and buses. The same tickets apply for all of them. Or get a Hamburg Card for unlimited travel around the city.

What food to try in Hamburg and where to eat?

Franzbrötchen is a delicious cinnamon pastry, ideal for coffee. Or have an apple pie, which is great here too. In the harbour, try the fish sandwiches or various sausages (such as Currywurst). With a beer and a view, it’s unbeatable.
Hamburg has plenty of international restaurants. You can eat deliciously and cheaply in the Portuguese Quarter just off the Elbe Promenade. A strong Turkish community is a guarantee of honest kebab. More tips in the article.

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