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Hamburg Tourist Attractions

Hamburg City HallHamburg City Hall View slideshow

The Free Hanseatic City of Hamburg, Germany's largest city after Berlin, is one of the sixteen Länder of the Federal Republic. Its favorable situation at the head of the long funnel-shaped estuary of the Elbe has made it one of the leading ports and commercial cities of Europe and a link between the sea and Germany's network of inland waterways.

The Land of Hamburg also includes the islands of Neuwerk and Scharhörn, far to the northwest at the mouth of the Elbe estuary.

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Inner Alster

The townscape of Hamburg owes its particular charm to the large basin of the Binnenalster, in the center of the city, round which run the elegant Jungfernstieg (with the Alsterpavillon cafe and the landing-stage used by the Alster boats) and the Ballindamm (with the offices of the Hapag-Lloyd shipping line, founded in 1847 as HAPAG). To the west of the Neuer Jungfernstieg, in Dammtorstrasse, is the State Opera House (Staatsoper; 1855).

Passagen

West and southwest of the Binnenalster in Hamburg the creation of pedestrian zones in recent years has added a number of new passagen (shopping arcades and lanes) to those already existing. Lined with shops, boutiques, restaurants, etc., they make this a pleasant area in which to stroll about.

Outer Alster

Lake Alster, Hamburg.
The line of Hamburg's old fortifications, with the Lombardsbrücke and Kennedybrücke, separates the Binnenalster from the Aussenalster to the north. This popular sailing area can also be reached from the Jungfernsteig on one of the Alster boats. Along its west side are beautiful parks and gardens.

Pöseldorf

Immediately west of the parks and gardens in Hamburg's Outer Alster is the redeveloped Pöseldorf area (galleries, boutiques, cafes and bars, etc.; painted house fronts).

Fleets

To the south of the Binnenalster in Hamburg are a number of canals (fleete), with locks, linking it with the Elbe (Herrengrabenfleet, Bleichenfleet, Alsterfleet and Nikolaifleet; sightseeing cruises). These canals mark the division between the old town (Altstadt) and the new town (Neustadt).

Art Gallery

To the east of the Ballindamm in Hamburg, on the Glockengiesserwall, stands the Kunsthalle, an art gallery (altar pieces by Meister Bertram of Minden and Meister Francke, works by Philipp Otto Runge and Caspar David Friedrich and minor Dutch masters; important special exhibitions).
Address: Glockengiesserwall 1, D-20095 Hamburg, Germany

Town Hall

Hamburg City Hall.
In the center of Hamburg's old town is the Rathausmarkt, with the Town Hall (1886-97), a sumptuous neo-Renaissance building. Behind it is the Stock Exchange (Börse).
Address: Rathausmarkt HH 1, D-20095 Hamburg, Germany

Mönckebergstrasse

From the Rathausmarkt, the wide Mönckebergstrasse, which is Hamburg's principal shopping and business street and lined with imposing offices and business houses, leads past St Peter's Church (St Petri (founded in 14th C.; rebuilt in neo-Gothic style 1844-49; 133 m/436ft high tower) to the Central Station (Hauptbahnhof), northeast of which is the Schauspielhaus (Theater).
The street has large department stores, fashionable stores for all ages, and other specialty shops.

Museum of Art and Industry

Facing the train station in Hamburg, to the southeast, is the Museum of Art and Industry, which ranks after the Bavarian National Museum in Munich as the most comprehensive display of German, European and Asian applied art in Germany (in particular china, furniture and silver from northern Germany and the Netherlands and applied art from East Asia) and a collection of works by Kokoschka.
Address: Steintorplatz 1, D-20099 Hamburg, Germany

Markthalle & Deichtorhallen

South of Hamburg's train station are the Markthalle (communications center) and the Deichtorhallen (restored and reopened in 1989; art exhibitions).
The Deichtorhallen are the largest exhibition halls of their kind in Europe with over 6,000 sq. m. of exhibition space.
Address: Deichtorstrasse 1-2, D-20095 Hamburg, Germany

St James's Church

To the south of Hamburg's Mönckebergstrasse, in Steinstrasse, can be found St James's Church (14th C., restored 1959 after severe damage in the Second World War), with medieval altars and an Arp Schnitger organ.

Chile House

South of Hamburg's St James Church, in Burchardplatz, is the boldly conceived ten-story Chilehaus (by Fritz Höger, 1922-24), perhaps the best-known building in the business quarter. Nearby is the Sprinkenhof (by Fritz Höger and H. and O. Gerson, 1927-31). Farther east stands the Cityhof (1956), a group of four 42 m/138ft high office blocks.

Ost-West-Strasse

From Hamburg's Messberg, a busy square on the south side of the Chilehaus (Messberghof, in clinker brick; by H. and O. Gerson, 1923-25), the wide Ost-West-Strasse leads west past St Catherine's Church (St. Katharinen; 14th-17th C., rebuilt 1956) and the 147 m/482ft high Nikolaikirchturm, the tower of St Nicholas's Church (completely destroyed during the Second World War) and over the Nikolaifleet, Alsterfleet and Herrengrabenfleet into the new town (Neustadt).

St Michael's Church

Baroque St Michael's Church (1750-62) in Hamburg.
In the new town is Hamburg's traditional emblem and landmark, the Baroque St Michael's Church (by E. G. Sonnin, 1750-62). From the 132m/433ft high tower, familiarly known as "Michel" (lift), there are fine views. In a courtyard to the east are the Krameramtswohnungen, dwellings originally built to house the widows of members of the Krameramt (Shopkeepers' Guild). In House C is a museum.
Address: Krayenkamp 4 C, D-20459 Hamburg, Germany

Port

Queen Mary 2 in Hamburg harbor.
The Port of Hamburg extends over an area of some 100 sq. km/40 sq. mi between the Norder- and the Süderelbe, from the two Elbe bridges in the east to the former fishermen's island of Finkenwerder in the west. It is a tidal harbor, accessible at all states of the tide. Much of it is a free port, enabling imported goods to be transshipped and stored without payment of duty.
There are harbor tours by boat.

Port Harbor Tours

A tour round the Hamburg Port is a fascinating experience. The boats leave from the St Pauli landing stages (Landungsbrücken; museum ship "Rickmer Rickmers"), which are used by all traffic in the port and on the lower Elbe. Nearby is the entrance to the Old Elbe Tunnel (448 m/490yd long) leading to the island of Steinwerder (shipyards).

Hafenrand - Promenade

The Hafenrandpromenade, a pedestrian route round the Hamburg Harbor, runs from the Messberg to the Fischmarkt. It is planned to extend it to Oevelgönne-Neumühlen.

Warehouse District

Typical Hamburg Dockside, called Speicherstadt.
On the Brookinsel, to the south of the Zollkanal, lies the Hamburg Speicherstadt (freeport area), built at the end of the 19th C. Here are found continuous lines of brick-built warehouses up to seven stories high, used for the storage of tobacco, coffee, rum, dried fruit and spices, as well as optical, mechanical and electronic apparatus, Oriental carpets, etc.

Köhlbrandbrücke

The Hamburg Harbor installations on the left bank of the Elbe are spanned by the Köhlbrandbrücke, a bridge 3.9km/2.5mi long and up to 54 m/177ft high (opened 1974), which has become a new Hamburg landmark.

Wallringpark

At the St Pauli landing stages in Hamburg begin the Wallringpark, a recreation area which takes in the Planten un Blomen park, the Old Botanic Garden and the Kleine and Grosse Wallanlagen, the gardens laid out on the line of the old fortifications. To the south is the Alter Elbpark (Old Elbe Park), with the Bismarck Memorial (on the model of the medieval figures of Roland), erected in 1906.

Museum on History

To the north of the Wallringpark, beyond the Millertordamm, is the Museum on the History of Hamburg (1913-22), now protected as a national monument, with a rich collection of material, including dioramas of the port at various stages in its history, ship models, etc.
Address: Holstenwall 24, D-20355 Hamburg, Germany

Plants and Flowers

North of the Hamburg History Museum, in the Wallringpark extends the popular park known as Planten un Blomen. At its north end are the Congress Center (1973) and the 32-story Hamburg Plaza Hotel.
There several fountains, cafes and restaurants in the park.

Congress Center

The Congress Center of Hamburg was opened in 1973 in the north-east corner of the park Planten un Blomen, not far from the Exhibition Grounds and only a few steps from Dammtor Station.
Address: Am Dammtor / Marseiller Str., D-20355 Hamburg, Germany

Trade Fair Grounds

At the west end of the Wallringpark in Hamburg are the Trade Fair Grounds, with twelve exhibition halls and a total area of some 60,000 sq. m/72,000 sq. yd.

Tele-Michel

Opposite the northwest entrance to Hamburg's Wallringpark, in Rentzelstrasse, rises the 272 m/892ft high Heinrich Hertz Telecommunications Tower (Fernmeldeturm; 1968), popularly known as "Tele-Michel," with a revolving restaurant at 132 m/433ft.

Museum of Ethnology

The Hamburg Museum of Ethnology was founded in 1879 and transferred to its present building in 1915.
Address: Rothenbaumchausee 64, D-20148 Hamburg, Germany

Heiligengeistfeld

Beyond the Grosse Wallanlagen and the Glacischaussee in Hamburg is the Heiligengeistfeld (30 hectares/75 acres), scene of the Domfest, a popular festival held in March-April and November/December.
Also in the field are a war memorial/military relic, a football ground, and an indoor swimming pool.

Reeperbahn

The main axis of the St Pauli district in Hamburg is the Reeperbahn (originally the street of the rope makers), famed for its bars and places of entertainment. In the past its attractions were its striptease joints and its shady hotels renting rooms by the hour, but with the risk of AIDS it has increasingly switched to amusement arcades, discotheques, etc. In Davidstrasse can be seen the legendary Davidswache police station.

Grosse Freiheit

In the Grosse Freiheit, off Hamburg's Reeperbahn, is the Baroque facade of St Joseph's Church (R.C.), flanked by places of entertainment.

Altonaer Museum

To the west of St Pauli in Hamburg, above the high bank of the Elbe, lies the district of Altona, with the once celebrated street of neo-classical houses (now protected as historical monuments) known as the Palmaille. In Museumstrasse, which runs north from the end of the Palmaille, is the Altona Museum (geology; landscape, settlement and economy of Schleswig-Holstein and the Lower Elbe; figureheads of galleons).
Address: Museumstrasse 23 (Altona), D-22765 Hamburg, Germany

Altona Balcony

At the west end of the Palmaille in Hamburg's Altona district is the Altonaer Balkon, with fine views of the river and the port. On the banks of the Elbe can be found the fishing harbor.

Volkspark

To the north of Hamburg's Altona, in the Bahrenfeld district, lies the Volkspark (160 hectares/400 acres; laid out 1914-15 and 1918-20), with play areas and sports grounds, allotments and a swimming pool (open in summer). Here too is the Volkspark Stadium (1951-53; 60,000 seats), built up from rubble from demolished buildings.

Oevelgönne District

Hamburg's Oevelgönne district contains the New Elbe Tunnel and the Museum Harbor.

Oevelgönne - Museum Harbor

In Oevelgönne, in Hamburg on the lower Elbe, is the Museum Harbor (1977), with historic ships still in working order. On the Elbuferweg are many pilots' houses. The Oevelgönner Seekiste (Sea-Chest) displays a variety of maritime curios.

New Elbe Tunnel

"Old Elbtunnel" in Hamburg.
In Oevelgönne in Hamburg is the northern entrance to the New Elbe Tunnel (A 7 highway), the south entrance to which is at the container terminal on the left bank of the Elbe. The tunnel, 3.3km/2mi long, with three lanes in each direction, runs under the river at a depth of up to 27 m/89ft.

Jenisch Park

West of the New Elbe Tunnel, in the Klein Flottbek district of Hamburg, lies the beautiful Jenischpark, rising to the north of the Elbchaussee. In the park are the neo-classical Jenisch-Haus, with rooms reflecting the taste of the prosperous middle classes, in styles ranging from Louis XVI to Art Nouveau, and the Ernst-Barlach-Haus (sculpture, drawings, printed graphic art).
Address: Baron-Voght-Strasse 50, D-22609 Hamburg, Germany

Hagenbeck - Zoo

In Hamburg's northwestern suburb of Stellingen is Hagenbeck's Zoo, excellently laid out on modern lines, with its large stock of animals arranged according to the part of the world from which they come. Most of them are in free-range enclosures ("troparium," dolphinarium).
Address: Hagenbeckallee 31 (Stellingen), D-22527 Hamburg, Germany

Planetarium

North of Hamburg's Aussenalster, in the Winterhude district, can be found the Winterhude Municipal Park (Stadtpark), with a Planetarium housed in an old water tower.
Planetarium Hamburg opened in 1930 and features the Zeiss planetarium projector "Universarium Mk.9", which projects onto a dome spanning 21 meters.
Address: Wasserturm in Stadtpark, Hindenburgstrasse Oe 1, D-22303 Hamburg, Germany

Harburg, Germany

Harburg, until 1937 an independent town (first recorded around 1140 as Horneburg), lies on the south bank of the Süderelbe, at a point where a ridge of sandy heathland, with the wooded Harburger Berge (Schwarze Berge), comes close to the river. Now incorporated in Hamburg, it is predominantly industrial (oil refineries) and has an important industrial harbor.
On the Lämmertwiete, to the north of the Marktplatz (known as the Sand), are a number of 17th and 18th C. half-timbered houses (restored). In Museumsplatz, near the Rathausplatz, is the Helms Museum (prehistory and the early historical period).

Hamburgische Staatsoper

Hamburg, like most German cities, lost its opera house to bombs during the war but the stage somehow survived and the starkly modern new opera house was built around it, opening in 1955 with 1,675 seats in a radical design, featuring balconies subdivided so that each seat is close to and facing the stage. There is not a bad seat in the house. The season runs from the end of August until early June with the best chance for getting tickets to nonsubscription, contemporary operas. The box office is open weekdays from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. and 4 - 6:30 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. and 90 minutes before each performance. Tickets go on sale two weeks before the performance or can be ordered in advance by writing to the box office.
Address: 35 Grosse Theaterstrasse, D-20354 Hamburg, Germany

Hamburg Metro

The first line of the Hamburg Metro was opened in 1912. The system is made up of 3 lines with 98km of track, 40.6km underground and 37.4km elevated. There are 87 stations. Tickets are interchangeable between all modes of transport in Hamburg.
The metro system serves about 175 million people yearly with a rolling stock of 933 cars. During peak hours trains run every 2-5 minutes.
Address: Steinstrasse 27, D-20095 Hamburg, Germany

Petrikirche

A new three-ailsed brick hall-church was erected in the first hald of the 14th C. and about 1418 a second side aisle was added on the south.

Ship Museum of San Diego

The ancient cargo ship San Diego, once used to transport merchandise from the coast of South America, is now open as a museum.
Address: Überseebrücke, D-20459 Hamburg, Germany

St Catherine's Church

This church, mainly of 16th C. design, is built in honor of the Princess of Alexandria who was martyred in the 4th C.

St Nicholas Tower

The ruined tower of Saint Nicholas has been in its state since the air raid of 1943. It is now a memorial to Nazi persecution and World War II.

Windjammer Rickmer Rickmers

Windajmmer Rickmer Rickmers is a large sailing ship that was built in 1896. It is docked at Hamburg and is open as a museum.
Address: St Pauli-Landungsbrücken, Brücke 1, D-20359 Hamburg, Germany

International Folk Festival

The International Folk Festival in Hamburg features folk dance and song every three years and is usually organized in September.
Address: Ahornweg 12, D-36110 Schlitz, Germany

Surroundings

Willkommhöft

6 km/4mi downstream on the Elbe from Blankenese (near Hamburg), at the Schulau ferry house, can be found the Willkommhöft ship-greeting station, where ships arriving or departing during daylight are greeted by the playing of their national anthem and the hoisting of their national flag.

Ahrensburg - Ahrensburg Castle

23km/14mi northeast of Hamburg is the Schleswig-Holstein town of Ahrensburg, with Schloss Ahrensburg, now a museum (splendid interiors reflecting the way of life of the country nobility).
Address: Lübeckerstrasse 1, D-22926 Ahrensburg, Germany

Friedrichsruh

In the Sachsenwald, 30km/20mi east of Hamburg, can be seen the Friedrichsruh hunting lodge, which was acquired by Bismarck in 1871 (Bismarck Museum and Mausoleum).
A special attraction is the Butterfly Garden (native and tropical butterflies in green houses).
Also in the area is Schloss Friedrichsruh, once the residence of Otto von Bismarck.

Kiekeberg Open-Air Museum

At Ehestorf, southwest of Hamburg-Harburg, the Kiekeberg Open-Air Museum exhibits houses of the 17th-19th centuries from Lüneburg Heath.

Elbchaussee

There is an attractive drive along the Elbchaussee to Blankenese (14km/8.5mi west of Hamburg's city center), a former fishing village with numbers of handsome villas on the Süllberg (86 m/282ft; fine view).

Four Lands and Fenlands

The Vierlande and Marschlande, 10-15km/6-9mi southeast of Hamburg, are fertile areas of low-lying land between the Elbe and the geest (sandy heathland), traversed by two old arms of the Elbe.

Billwerder

On the northwestern edge of the Marschlande near Hamburg are the Boberg dunes and the Achtermoor (bird sanctuary). In Billwerder are the church of St Nicholas (originally Baroque) and, on the Billdeich, the German Painters' and Lacquerworkers' Museum.

Schloss, Bergedorf

Bergedorf, near Hamburg, has a 13th C. schloss, rebuilt in the early 19th C, which now houses the Museum of Bergedorf and the Vierlande. To the southeast is Hamburg Observatory.

Curslack

In Curslack, to the south of Bergedorf near Hamburg, is the Vierlande Open-Air Museum (old houses).

International Folk Festival, Scheessel, Germany

Scheessel is the site of an annual festival which takes place in July and brings together folk dancers, singers and musicians from all over the world. Traditional trades fairs and expositions are also organized as part of the festival.

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