Hamburg in a Day

My wife and I visited Hamburg when it was one of the ports of call while sailing on Cunard’s Queen Victoria in January this year. The ship berthed at the Altona Cruise Terminal…

Queen Victoria at the Altona Cruise Ship Terminal

Cunard laid on a complimentary shuttle bus which dropped us a very short distance from Hamburg’s famous Rathaus

…which fortunately had been our pre-planned starting point for our day. Our companion for the day was the trusted Eyewitness Travel Guide for Hamburg, a comprehensive and trusted publication…

No visit to Hamburg would be complete without a visit to Binnenalster Lake which is only a short walk from the Rathaus…

The  south bank of Binnenalster Lake boasts the most famous of Germany’s shopping Streets,  Jungfernstieg…

Jungfernstieg owes its name to the unmarried daughters (Jungfer is the old German word for “virgin” or “maiden”) who were shown off by their wealthy families on walks along the promenade. This was a sort of informal version of a coming-out ceremony.

In the picture above can be seen the historic office and shopping building Hamburger Hof built in  1883 of red sandstone and  Heine House (right) built in 1903 in Art Nouveau style.

Our next destination was to be The St Nikolai Memorial.  Heavily damaged by air raids during the Second World War it was decided not to make a complete restoration but to allow the ruins of the original church to become a memorial to the tragic consequences of war…

The St. Nikolai Tower houses a glass lift which takes visitors up to the 76 metre high viewing platform where panoramic views over Hamburg are available…

Another outstanding feature of the Tower is the 51 Bell Carillion which is played every Thursday at noon…

A short walk back along Ludwig Erhard Strasse is the Church of St Michaelis. Hamburg’s most famous landmark…

The St. Michaelis Church boasts a  132 metre Tower and a viewing platform at 82 metres. Inside the church, above the main entrance, looms a 6,665 pipe Steinmeyer organ

…the largest of three organs in the church.

St Michaelis Church has an organ recital and service around mid-day and this event features on cruise ship excursions. On our visit I chose to climb the Tower and visit the massive Crypt while my wife enjoyed the recital. On my descent from the viewing platform my timing coincided with the noon peel of St. Michaelis bells…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-T8rTCZ4Pw

very short distance from St. Michaelis Church is the monument to the first German Chancellor, Otto von Bismark. A very impressive statue set in a small green park, the only disappointment was the graffiti that has been allowed to spoil its appearance….

In the same park ( Grosse Wallenlagen city centre park)  as the Bismark Statue, we came across this building…

which was an old WWII Median bunker (flak towers) , now transformed into an accommodation block  –  impressive?

http://www.battlefieldsww2.com/Remnants_from_world_war_II_in_Hamburg.html

Hamburg is of course the home of  both the Reeperbahn and the true birth place of ‘The Beatles’.  The Reeperbahn itself is now a pretty seedy place and the centre of Hamburg’s sex industry…

and also the home of Germany’s most famous police station…

So what about The Beatles?  Well they are still very much revered in The Reeperbahn.  A  monument, of sorts, to their genius is at the heart of the Reeperbahn…

…sits at the end of the road that leads to the venue of their Hamburg days, The Indra Club…

We discovered that the western end of the Reeperbahn is actually no great distance from the Altona Cruise Terminal and it turned out to be a very pleasant walk, past the Old Jewish Cemetery on Konigstrasse…

We dropped down from Konigstrasse onto the  waterfront for the final few hundred metres back to the cruise terminal. Plenty to see on this route with its attractions such as…

The U434 Submarine Museum

and the St.Pauli Fishmarket

Hamburg is a great city to visit and I think I am safe in saying that we covered some ground in that one day. There were a number of other interesting places we saw as well as some we missed but they will be for another day.

We left the ship just after 8.00 am and returned around 4.30 having had a long but fabulous day.

One response to “Hamburg in a Day

  1. Next time you must visit Planten um Bloemen an excellent urban park.
    A boat trip around the commercial port is also a good option.
    La Bau near Kiel about an hour train journey is a good option if you want to get out of the big city as is a trip to Lubeck

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