I loved to walk around the city and observe all the local people. It was amazing how much German I learned from just listening and how much culture I saw all around me. I loved being apart of the country and seeing its people in their real lives and day to day jobs.
Portuguese Seafood Restaurants
My wife and I had two dinners in Portuguese seafood restaurants in Hamburg. One was on a restaurant street in the harbor area and the other was elsewhere. Both meals were interesting and excellent. As I recall, I had bacalau (salted cod) in one place and in the other place got a plate with six rather large grilled sardines that onlybeen olive-oiled for the grill and were out of this world. This cuisine was a big surprise to us.
Beer, Music, Dancing
Recently I was in Rosis Bar, a small shabby but cute bar. A hot spot in the nightlife scene in St. Pauli and Reeperbahn area. Locatet at the street Hamburger Berg, number 7. I loved the music there. The DJ mostly played songs from the 60s which was unusual to me but really cool! It's a small location that gets overloaded with people starting at 11 p.m. No reason not to dance - but it is pretty hard to fight for your space;-) No entrance, average age around 25 to 35 and older. And No-smoking for it's finally prohibited since January 2008 --- too great;-)
Good value bakery/cafe
Schanzen Backerei is the place for a quick, cheap meal when you want some good quality German food but don't want to wait too long for it. It's also open very late at night, which is ideal if you're in need of some food after an evening in the pub. We ate breakfast here twice as it was a lot cheaper than at our hotel. Despite it's name, the Schanzenbackerei is not unique to the Schanzen neighbourhood and there are a number of them in Hamburg.
Take a boat trip through the harbour II - History
Hamburg's harbour is the biggest in Germany, the third-biggest in Europe and the eleventh-biggest in the world. It covers an area of more than 7,200 hectars. While there was a harbour as early as in the 9th century, the official founding date is May 7, 1189. Every year, Hamburg celebrates this date with the "Hafengeburtstag", a big funfair. Half a century later, Hamburg introduced the first code of law, the Ordelbook, which regulated the trade in the harbour. The importance of the harbour grew quickly and soon Hamburg was one of the main ports of the hansa trade. A main good to be shipped abroad was - who would have guessed that? - beer: In 1375, there were 457 breweries in the city! While the sands of time brought many changes to the trade via the harbour, Hamburg didn't lose its importance. The harbour was changed every time this was necessary: old parts were closed, the basins filled up with earth and used to built warehouses; new parts with deeper basins for bigger ships were erected further down the river Elbe, quais were redesigned, wharfs closed and opened again... Nowadays, Hamburg is one of the winners of globalization. The harbour is as busy as during its heyday, but in a different way. With container terminals that are among the most modern in the world, Hamburg's harbour has become quieter. Everything functions electronically, so you hardly see any ship-boys anymore but rather giant cranes unloading goods.