11 Sep What to do in Hamburg. Guide for 48 hours.
Hamburg was our first destination in Germany as a couple! We spend there a weekend and we had the chance to discover this fascinating city. Speaking with friends before our trip, we were informed that you Hamburg is considered one of the most beautiful cities in Germany. Below you will find what to do in Hamburg if you only have 48 hours available!
Travel to Hamburg!
Speicherstadt: the world’s largest warehouses.
One of our favorite spots in Hamburg was undoubtedly Speicherstadt. In fact, we went there twice, during the afternoon to check the sunset and the next morning. This area is the largest block of warehouses in the world and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2015. The warehouses are built on the river Elbe and create a beautiful complex of canals, bridges and buildings. Their construction took place from 1883 to 1927. The buildings are built from a characteristic red brick, which creates a magnificent red reflection in the water, especially during sunset. The warehouses operated normally until 2013, but today they host a number of attractions & sights such as the awesome Miniatur Wunderland (see below).
Tip: Favorite spot for photographs is the Wasserschloss (the building in the photo), which today operates as a café – teahouse!
Miniatur Wunderland, a very” small world”.
What to do in Hamburg that you really enjoy? Visit one of the most popular attractions,the miniature museum! In fact, it is a “microcosm” which takes you to a journey on different parts of the world, such as Las Vegas, Switzerland and Italy. Tiny figures (263,000 to be precise), 1040 trains, 9 theme areas, an airport, and even a volcano await you to discover them from a different angle. It’s like being part of the movie” Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.” This microcosm opened its doors to the public in 2001 and, as it turned out, became a favorite attraction for the children and the adults too. The entrance fee for adults is 14 euros, with a small discount if you use the Hamburg Card. Opening hours are from 08.30 to 21.00, however on Saturdays is open until 24.00. In any case check the hours before you go on their website.
Elbphiharmonie, the modern concert hall of Hamburg.
Many would say that Elbphiharmonie is not just a building but a modern piece of art! It combines beautiful architecture and ideal location (which make it truly eye-catching). It fits perfectly with Hamburg’s urban vibe and is well worth a visit. If you are a music lover you can try to catch a concert too! The concert hall, known in German as Elbphiharmonie has a glass facade, which creates a nice reflection with the sky and the harbor and it’s ideal for photos. The concert hall is also known for its great acoustics, but we did not have the chance to attend a concert.
Tip: You can enjoy the view and a coffee at “Deck & Deli” (with the Hamburg Card you get a 20% discount, as long as you declare it before you order).
For Hamburger in Hamburg!
There is a theory, among others which claims that Hamburger’s origin is from Hamburg. Yes yes you read well. The port of Hamburg, being one of the most “powerful” in the world, connected the Old World with America. Many German immigrants went to America via Hamburg. So it is rumored that these ships were serving a type of sandwich, consisting of beef between two buns. And as you can guess that was the beginning of the hamburger legend. After this brief glimpse into the past, keep in mind to include into your “what to do in Hamburg” list a hamburger tasting! We went to the “Brooklyn Burger Bar” after a friend’s recommendation and we loved it! Another place which we wanted to try but we didn’t managed to go was the “Dulf’s Burger”. Next time we hope!
Stroll to the harbor & the fish market.
Hamburg host Europe’s 2nd largest harbor and the perfect spot to experience the city’s vibe. Commercial boats, mini-cruise ships, people walking & cycling are some of the things you will find at the harbor. The harbor is the perfect place if you want to take a ferry for a two-hour tour on the city’s canals, as well as sample a local dish, such as the Fischbrötchen (fish sandwich). Another must-visit is the Fish Market on Sunday mornings. We’ve read it everywhere, but to be honest we didn’t manage to wake up at 6 in the morning to attend the fish market event… But there is another way to stay awake until the early hours of Sunday and go straight! What you will do ther? You can enjoy live music between the stands with fish auctions, and taste local snacks. (Whoever goes, let us know how it looked!)
Relaxing at Planten un Blomen Park.
Although we loved Hamburg’s urban vibe, a gateway to one of the city’s green parks will give you a fresh breath, especially if you are there during summer. Planten un Blomen, which has been blooming for the last two centuries, is a beautiful park where many events are organized, mainly musical events. Spread over 450,000 square meters, it hosts theme gardens & small lakes. In winter time when temperatures drop, a skating rink is set up in the center of the park!
Accommodation in Reichshof Hamburg.
During our visit to Hamburg we stayed at the Reichshof Hamburg Hotel which belongs to the Curio Collection by Hilton group. The hotel is very conveniently located in the city center, just a 5-minute walk from Central Station and only half an hour from the airport (by train). The hotel has 278 rooms and 9 suites, as well as a very nice spa, gym kai conference rooms. We stayed in Room 638, on the 6th floor which had great views of the city and the “towers” of St. Cathedral. Marien. Nice detail in the room, the espresso machine with capsules being renewed every day and the quality of the shower gel (“happiness” is hidden in the detail!). The staff was very kind, and the breakfast buffet met all our needs. It’s also worth visiting the 1910 Bar, a historic bar well known in Hamburg, as well as the Stadt restaurant for a combination of modern and traditional German cuisine.
For more info: www.reichshof-hotel-hamburg.de
Extra tips & other places worth seeing.
What is it worth doing in Hamburg that your pocket will be grateful for? Buy the Hamburg Card. In a few words, this card covers your public transportation (and the airport rides) and offers up to 50% off at many attractions, museums and restaurants. The cost starts from 10.50€ per person and increases according to the days and individuals. Hamburg beyond all our suggestions has many more places to check out! Some of which are the following:
- Reeperbahn, η Red-Light district
- Το Kunsthalle Museum
- Flohschanze flea market, for Saturday vintage shopping
- Elbtunnel, the Underground River Tunnel
- Michael’s Church, the view from the observation deck
Note: This trip was conducted in cooperation with Visit Hamburg, and this article is based on our personal experience and view as ever.
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