Hamburg City Trip: Travel Tips and Ideas

Tips for your city trip to Hamburg

No matter whether you have already been to Hamburg or it is your first city trip to the Hanseatic city of Hamburg. Because a short trip to the Elbe is always worth it! Find out more about Hamburg and its sights in our tips. The most beautiful city tours and tours. Discover insider tips and favorite places from locals with tips for going out for nightlife. We’ll show you what you can experience on your city trip to Hamburg.

The  Hanseatic city of Hamburg is a very popular destination for short trips in northern Germany. The city offers an ideal mixture of places worth seeing and museums and the most extraordinary nightlife in Germany. 

Hamburg tips at a glance

Here for the first time?

If you’ve never been to Hamburg, you can’t miss the main attractions. Of course, Hamburg has more to offer than the Elbphilharmonie, harbor, and musicals. Here are a few tips for your first visit to Hamburg:

  1. Hamburg is the Venice of the North. In Hamburg you are always on the water: either on the Elbe at the port, the Alster, or one of the numerous canals. With more than 2,500 bridges, Hamburg is the city with the most bridges in Europe.
  2. Hamburg is the musical capital of Germany. It started in the 1980s. Since then, Hamburg has been the musical metropolis in Germany and, alongside New York and London, one of the most important cities for musicals in the world.
  3. The Elbphilharmonie is mandatory. The impressive building is the city’s newest landmark. On the Elbphilharmonie Plaza, you can get a great view of the city and the harbor from a height of 37 meters. Tickets are free, but you should still reserve them in advance, as they are of course very popular.
  4. Eat fish sandwiches at the Landungsbrücken. Fish rolls belong to Hamburg. The best are either early in the morning at the fish market or at the Landungsbrücken at Bridge 10. My choice is the matjes.
  5. Eat a Franzbrötchen. The Franzbrötchen is a pastry made from yeast dough, filled with cinnamon and sugar. The best ones can be found at “Die Kleine Konditorei”. You can read about where Hannah still likes to eat her Franzbrötchen in the insider tips for Hamburg.
  6. Speicherstadt, Hamburg’s World Heritage Site. The largest warehouse complex in the world is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here you will find the most beautiful brick Gothic buildings in Hamburg. Take a tour of the Speicherstadt and visit the Miniatur Wunderland. An absolute highlight in the Hanseatic city.
  7. Use the harbor ferries for a round trip. Experience Hamburg’s port from the water. Take one of the harbor ferries and enjoy the view. The harbor tours, which of course offer more information, are a bit more expensive. The start is at the Landungsbrücken.
  8. Old Elbe tunnel. The old Elbe tunnel leads to the southern side of the Elbe. When it opened in 1911, it was the first river tunnel in Europe. The Old Elbe Tunnel is a must when visiting Hamburg for the first time.
  9. You can get a great view of the fish market and the harbor from the “Steinwerder” vantage point.
  10. One night you have to go to the neighborhood to party. Most of the nightlife in Hamburg takes place around the Kiez. St. Pauli with its Reeperbahn and the many bars ensures that you can party until the early hours. Of course, there are more tourists than locals here.

Travel tips & useful information for Hamburg

From the airport to the center

Actually, I advise against flying within Germany. However, sometimes it cannot be avoided.

In Hamburg, the best and cheapest way to get from the airport to the main train station or Jungfernstieg (yellow line) is to take the S1 for 3 euros. If you arrive at the train station, you are already in the middle of Hamburg city center anyway.

How do I get from A to B in Hamburg?

Definitely not by car. This is absolutely not advisable here, especially at rush hour times. The HVV, the Hamburger Hochbahn, is better, although the people of Hamburg like to complain about them. If you don’t mind the risk of a downpour, there’s still the bike.

Within the city, you can actually get to your destination very easily on foot.

Public transport in Hamburg

The public transport network is very well developed! You definitely don’t need a car. Rather leave it and discover the city on foot or use public transport for longer distances.

The HVV offers various tickets that can be tailored to your needs. There are day tickets and weekly tickets and there is even a discount if you book via the HHV app! With the Hamburg City Pass, you can book your ticket for the HVV directly.

Extra tip: something I first had to learn in Hamburg: driving a bus. Not all districts in Hamburg are well connected to the underground network. And during the week and especially at night, you often have to switch to buses. But it’s easy and you’ll reach your destination quickly.


Emmy‘s e -scooters are also available in Hamburg. If you are already registered anyway, you can simply borrow Emmy scooters within the usage area.

Great, especially in summer, to quickly jet towards Elbe beach! Download the app in good time: Since you need a driver’s license to use it, activation will take a little longer! Billing is either per minute or per day. It is currently 15 euros per day or 27 cents per minute (as of March 2021). You will always find cheaper than a rental car and a parking space.

Important note: in the winter months the scooters are in hibernation and rest for the next season.


Moia is a new ridesharing model from Volkswagen. The shuttle bus takes 330 electric vehicles through the city. Simply register in the app and enter your start and destination.

Moia is cheaper than Uber, the only “downside” is that you have to hop on and off at set points. However, these are always close to your destination. So a bit like taking the bus, only more comfortable and flexible.

Current information March 2021: Moia is currently on pause due to COVID-19. Check the website for the latest information.


The international provider Uber is now known to most. Like driving a taxi with an app, except that you know beforehand how much the trip will cost you.

Uber operates worldwide and you can easily have everything billed by credit card or PayPal. The annoying search for small change is over because paying in cash is not possible!

The city bike of the HVV

I’m actually not a fan of rental bikes. Often they are not of good quality, the rental is complicated or expensive. In Hamburg, however, there are StadtRAD city bikes and I think the bikes are great. Simply download the app, register, rent a bike and set off. StadtRAD Hamburg is part of the Deutsche Bahn bike-sharing service.

I was pleasantly surprised by the StadtRAD when I was last in Hamburg. The fact that the first 30 minutes are free makes the rental worthwhile.

After that, you will be billed in minutes, or you can book a day pass.

Important note: You can only park your bikes in the designated stations. Wild parking is therefore not possible, but it is definitely good for the cityscape!

Hotel tips for Hamburg

As always, the following applies when choosing a hotel on city trips: the location is crucial! Hamburg is a very popular destination for city trips in Germany and the cheap hotels are booked up quickly.

If you want a good location, have demands for cleanliness and quiet, but also have a limited budget, then you should book early in Hamburg.

Since I’m in Hamburg regularly (and have always been for private reasons), I tested a few hotels. 

Here are my favorites:

Motel One Michel

In terms of value for money, no other hotel comes close to Motel One am Michel. The only disadvantage: spontaneous booking is not possible. The hotel is quite popular and often fully booked.

View and book a hotel on

Good & cheap: Superbude Hotel Hostel St. Pauli 

Since the hostel also offers double rooms and is located in the Karo district, it is ideal for going out.

Check out the stylish hostel in St. Pauli

Stylish: 25 h Hotel HafenCity Hamburg

The 25h Hotel HafenCity, on the other hand, is exceptional. As always with the 25h Hotels, great importance was attached to the individual furnishing. In the new Hafen City, you can stay here without hesitation. I have stayed here several times and love the breakfast and the design of the rooms.

Definitely, an exciting place, especially if you are passionate about architecture and new urbanism!

Check out the 25 h HafenCity here

Lindner Hotel am Michel

Hotels in the Lindner chain are always a great choice. So far we have only had good experiences with the houses and I was also completely enthusiastic in Hamburg at the Lindner Hotel am Michel.

Above all, the location directly on the Michel and not far from Landungsbrücken and St. Pauli is simply perfect. From here you can easily start your city trip.

You have short ways to all attractions and places worth seeing. If you just want to stay downtown, you really can walk everywhere and don’t even have to resort to public transport!

Do you also value fitness and wellness? Then the “Lindner fit & well” area will convince you: Over 200 m² plus a sauna and steam bath are available to you as a hotel guest. There really is nothing more to desire. 

Book Lindner Hotel am Michel here

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like