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Hamburg is Germany’s second-largest city, and its largesse encompasses everything from the “most sinful mile in the world” (the notorious Reeperbahn) to the charming restored cottages of the old fisherman’s quarter, overlooking the river in Blankenese. The large lake right in the city’s heart, as well as the parks – especially the old ramparts of Alten Wallanlagen and the botanical garden, Japanese garden and illuminated water organ in the city center – give Hamburg even more variety, and visitors are torn between the citified pleasures of museums and shopping or the appeal of being able to sail, paddle, run or walk in a beautiful urban ...

Hamburg is Germany’s second-largest city, and its largesse encompasses everything from the “most sinful mile in the world” (the notorious Reeperbahn) to the charming restored cottages of the old fisherman’s quarter, overlooking the river in Blankenese. The large lake right in the city’s heart, as well as the parks – especially the old ramparts of Alten Wallanlagen and the botanical garden, Japanese garden and illuminated water organ in the city center – give Hamburg even more variety, and visitors are torn between the citified pleasures of museums and shopping or the appeal of being able to sail, paddle, run or walk in a beautiful urban setting. Boat tours explore both the lake and the river for different perspectives on the many faces of Hamburg. For historic sights and architecture, begin in the Old City, at St. Michael’s church, the finest baroque church in northern Germany, and ascend its 400-foot-tall clock tower for views of the city. In the tower is a clock dial 75 feet in diameter. Here, too, are Germany’s oldest stock exchange, the Rathaus (Town Hall), the 17th-century Krameramtswohnungen – historic traders' quarters authentically furnished as part of the history museum. The Trostbrücke bridge has been in use since 1266.

Stillman Rogers
About the Expert

Stillman Rogers has written more than two dozen guidebooks, including Adventure Guide to Canada's Atlantic Provinces, Guide to Eastern Canada, and Adventure Guide to the Chesapeake.

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Now Happening in Hamburg

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Hamburg is a major port city situated on the Elbe River in northern Germany
  • Language: German
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Any time of year has something happening, from the pre-lenten carnival to the Christmas markets in December.