Fun things to do in Hamburg

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Hamburg

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    Luxurious Spa Treatment A la "1001 Nights"

    by ericaj. Written Mar 26, 2014

    Das Hamam Hamburg is one of the premiere Turkish Baths in Northern Germany, with its top- notch spa services and Oriental decor inviting you into a relaxing world that resembles a scene from the classic novel " 1001 Nights". The spa concept is based on the traditional Turkish Baths of the 1500's, meant to cleanse the body, mind, and soul. With Spa packages that begin at €30 (for a basic wash, rest, & body peel with Welcome Tea) on up to the €180 Exclusive package including hairwash, extensive rest period, massage, champagne, meal & wine), there is something for every budget here and the service is just extraordinary;you leave having been pampered like royalty and feel like an entirely new person with not a stress in the world!

    The basic spa process at Hamam generally goes like this: on arrival with your swimsuit in tow, you are given a special bathing cloth to wrap around the body like a towel. You are doused in soothing waters from beautiful copper bowls in a room that looks almost ancient, then have relaxation time on heated marble slabs relax your muscles. Next is your body peeling followed by a soap-sud massage that leaves your skin feeling completely brand new followed by steaming, relaxtion time and tea service. You can virtually feel tension melt away and tyour body ridding itself of toxins and stress.

    As with all spas in Germany, I would recommend bringing your own spa shoes/rubber flip flops to protect your feet from wet surfaces as you're walking around. it is required to bring 6 wear your own a swimsuit at this facility, and also recommended to bring 2 towels with you for drying yourself at different intervals of your treatment. There is a rental desk available charging 1,00 for flip flops, 3,00 for towels, and 5,00 for cotton bathrobes. Entry is by reservation only, and no kids under 10 years old allowed. Underage children must be accompanied by an adult.

    HOURS (ENTRY By RESERVATION ONLY):

    10 am- 10 pm Mon-Fri
    11 am- 21 pm Weekends and Public Holidays

    *MONDAYS, FRIDAYS & EVERY 4th SUNDAY: Women Only!*

    *TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, SATURDAY: Mixed Clientele*

    CLOSED Thursdays

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    Visit a Historic 19th Century Senator's House

    by ericaj. Written Mar 25, 2014

    One of the most relaxing and picturesque tourist attractions is the very upper-crust Jenisch Haus museum located on Hamburg's west side, just a few minutes walk from the S1 train station "KLEIN FLOTTBEK" and the Hamburg Botanical Garden.

    Historically speaking, the museum is actually former 19th century residence country house of Hamburg senator Martin Jenisch, built during the early 1800s. The house sits on a massive estate covering 110 acres of land, with some botanical gardens, rolling hills, a few creeks, bridges, and borders a beautiful view of the Elbe River. Located in the upper middle-class suburb of Klein Flottbek (with it's other border running along the ultra-affluent road Elbchausee) , the grounds have a very dignified, "country gentleman" feel to them, and are utilized freely by surrounding residents for walking, outdoor reading, biking and exercising their hounds. For several years now, Jensisch Haus Museum & Park has been designated as the headquarters of The Elbe Museum of Art and Culture (Museum für Kunst and der Elbe).

    Inside the museum are a gift shop, and rooms that sometimes include downstairs salons open for a free peek. Otherwise museum entry is €5 to see the entire mansion (free for kids under 16), and inside there is also the simple (but in-demand) Museum Cafe inside, run by the posh Louis C. Jacob restaurant from nearby Blankenese: the environment is subdued & dignified, with very polite service. In Museum Cafe, cakes offered for traditional German-style coffee service are delicious, and you can also enjoy quiches, light soups, wine and Sekt. There is an additional terrace open for service in summer months, weather permitting, but as a small warning, generally the Cafe should be avoided on weekends as fight for dining space is premium amongst locals, and often has a long wait to enter.

    Jenisch Haus is open Tuesday-Sunday from 11am -6pm. They're also noted for also having music concerts in their grand salon rooms, as well as private galas and wedding events. It is a perfect location to have quiet, introspective time to yourself and enjoy a small piece of "Old World" Europe that manages to exist in Hamburg's otherwise sleek, modernist environment. The estate is also great for couples looking for an activity that has a romantic essence perfect for dates & romantic travel.

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    Send in The Clowns at the Traveling Circus Palace

    by ericaj. Written Mar 21, 2014

    One sure bet to be a hit with family travel is to take in one of the many traveling circuses that tour Germany annually. There's a an open greenspace in my neighborhood that plays location host to a few troupes that travel throughout the country, and it's always been fun to visit individual big tops with friends and their young children at varying times of the year. You can often see a llama here or there behind a safety fence right on the green, grazing a bit and catching their beauty sleep before showtime.

    Of the many circuses that travel the land one of the one's I've enjoyed most is Der Circus-Paslast (The Circus Palace). Their program has a really vintage feel to it that will transport you back to your own childhood with live circus orchestra, dancing performance, tricks, and the usual happy clowns, acrobats, and circus performing animals sure to bring smiles to the faces of your smallest guest. The Circus Palace is apparently family run, and it shows in the warmth of the show and their desire to entertain the crowd. Der Circus Palast usually has discount days that feature such promotions as free entry days for Dads, and "Familientag" (Family Day), where adults pay the same price as children.

    Prices for Der Circus-Palast are: €13- € 22 for children under 12, and €17- €26 for Adults. Tickets can be ordered by phone, or as per instruction on the Circus Palast website (via a local ticket outlet website like "Eventim".

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    High Culture in a Heavenly Locale

    by ericaj. Written Mar 6, 2014

    Having been practically demolished in WW2, to accommodate the growing pace and sprawl of contemporary life, Hamburg is a city that continually finds some of the most inventive uses for buildings that survived the war that you could ever encounter in an industrialized country. One such example the popular Kultur Kirche Altona, where dance, theatre, poetry, jazz , classical & world music mix with arts lovers at the St. Johanniskirche (St. John's Church) in Altona. This historic church also doubles as one of the most premiere event rental locations for private and corporate events in the city, including receptions, charity galas, and awards ceremonies. The monies earned from rentals as an event location are used to maintain the church building, and to fund programs that help the needy and place the homeless.

    What you can expect to find during Johanniskirche's monthly event calendars are a mix of performances ranging from poetry slams, to tango/flamenco music, to jazz quartets, to Brazilian music, to classical performances of opera or Mozart featuring performers from Hamburg's illustrious Music Conservatory. Extra incentive for budget travelers; most performances generally run about €9 pre-purchase, €15 at the door.

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    Picturesque Gardens in West Hamburg

    by ericaj. Written Jan 5, 2014

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    Absolutely delightful and totally free, the Hamburg Botanical garden provides long, picturesque strolls through some of the most ornate garden plans you will find across Germany. There are scores of seating dotted throughout the park, along with a lake and summer cafe, "Cafe Palme" with shade umbrellas for a coffee, light snack, or ice cream during the warm weather months. Summer also hosts special arts and culture festivals, free and open to the public. Perfect for quiet time to clear your mind and connect with the outdoors, or for a date with a friend or loved one. Operating hours daily from 9am- to 1 1/2 hours before sunset. Unfortunately neither dogs nor bikes are allowed as many plants in the gardens are protected species. Although entrance is free, please note that there is a donation box at the entrance, and garden guides/maps of the grounds are also available there for 50 cents each (in English).

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    Take a Stroll Through The Exotic World Below Water

    by ericaj. Written Jan 5, 2014

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    As part of the Hagenbeck Tiepark, the Tropen Aquarium (Tropical World Adventure Aquarium) opened in 2007 and features hundreds of animals, flora, and fauna from around the world. There are caves, forests, coral reefs, fresh and salt water pools, and a breathtaking cinema style room with a floor to ceiling tank featuring some of the largest sea mammals on the planet. Crocodile feeding takes place each day at 1:30 pm, and shark feeding at 2pm. The stroll takes about two hours to get through and works well for either a family outing (during the weekends), or a romantic date (early evenings). The Aquarium is open from 9am-6pm daily, and costs €14 per adult, €10 per child, or family cards are available for €43- €49 . Eating facilities are available as well as wheelchair and kiddie wagon rental. Wheelchairs need to be served in advanced and kiddie wagons are available on first come, first serve basis.

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    Ohlsdorf Cemetery

    by MichaelFalk1969 Updated Dec 16, 2013

    The Ohlsdorf cemetery in Hamburg is the largest park-cemetery in the world, established 1877.The area is so large that buslines connect distant parts of the cemetery. The lenght of all paths in Ohlsdorf combined is 80 km, so if you visit, you should have an idea what part is most interesting to you. Among the most impressive mausolueums is the one in the photograph, with a statue of death dragging to youths by the hair .. quite scary. Many famous Hamburg citizens rest here, among them actors Hans Albers, Heinz Erhardt, Inge Meysel, director Gustav Gründgens, the writer Wolfgang Borchert, zoo director Carl Hagenbeck and many more.

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    Schauspielhaus, Hamburg, Germany

    by TrendsetterME Written Jun 10, 2013

    "The Deutsches Schauspielhaus" is a theatre in the St. Georg quarter of the city of Hamburg, Germany. With a capacity for 1192 spectators, it places it as Germany's largest theatre.

    It was established in 1901 by the renowned stage actress Franziska Ellmenreich.

    The biggest german speech theatre looks back on a famous tradition: Gustav Gründgens, Ivan Nagel and Peter Zadek staged highlights in german theatre history here...

    The theatre, located in Kirchenallee, has an attractive rococo interior and a history stretching back for over 100 years. Famous directors and actors have shaped the Schauspielhaus in the last decades, creating a “stage for contemporary theatre goers”.

    Its very easy to reach just facing across the "Cental Railway Station" and next to the "Maritim Reichshof Hotel".

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    Old Town Hall, Stade, Hamburg, Germany

    by TrendsetterME Updated Jun 2, 2013

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    The Hanseatic town of Stade is very connected to their history. In addition to the beautiful old town, this also shows in the historic town hall, which is still the administrative center of Stade.

    The meeting rooms and other facilities are historic Ren worth a look. Every day they're interested in attracting and tourists. But the meeting rooms in the new part of the town hall reflect the closeness of Stade against their sister cities.

    The wedding room was formerly the courtroom. The wedding room is also influenced by the high wood paneling, chandeliers and Flemish oak furniture.

    Today, the Senator furnished room a festive meeting and reception rooms. This space has changed frequently over the years. It is believed that once in the small room that was at this point, the Baustube had its headquarters.

    As u make a visit to Stade, the Old Town Hall is suggested to see and feel the history inside ..

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    Heine House

    by Nemorino Updated Feb 26, 2013

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    This building was not named for the writer Heinrich Heine, but for his uncle Salomon Heine (1767-1844), a wealthy merchant and banker who had a house on this site. His original house was destroyed in the great fire of 1842, but he replaced it with a bigger and better one.

    That house in turn was replaced in 1903 by an attractive Jugendstil-building called “Heine House”, which after several renovations now (again) looks much the same as it did when it was first built.

    Solomon Heine is remembered both as a benefactor of the city of Hamburg (when he died he left most of his fortune to various charities and worthy causes in the city) and as a benefactor of his famous nephew, whom he took in as an apprentice in his banking house.

    Unfortunately Heinrich Heine was a dreamy poet who was totally unsuited to the banking business. His uncle was disappointed but continued to support Heinrich with monthly checks which enabled him to study and to keep on writing.

    Salomon Heine had two sons and four daughters, two of whom their cousin Heinrich was in love with at various times. Unfortunately the girls did not share his feelings, so today Amalie (1800-1830) and Therese (1808 - 1880) are best remembered as the inspiration for some of Heinrich’s early poems of unrequited love.

    Next review: Kunsthalle = Art Hall

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    St. Michaelis church

    by Nikolay_Ivanov Written Jul 24, 2012

    The church, called by the local people "Michel", was constructed three times: in 1850, 1906 and 1945. It is one of the landmarks of Hamburg and is visible from the ships floating on the Elbe. I strongly recommend visiting the church.

    May-October: 09:00-19:30
    November-April: 10:00-17:30

    Observation platform: 4 euro

    Crypt: 3 euro

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    Elbphilharmonie

    by MichaelFalk1969 Updated Jul 14, 2012

    This future Hamburg sight with its dramatic architecture will become a concert house - however, nobody knows when. Building started 2007, since then the estimated costs have more than quadrupled, from 77 million € to 476 million €, and instead of 2010 it will rather be completed in 2014/15. But even in its current state it is clear that this place will be a major Hamburg attraction. It is located between the eastern part of the harbour and the western tip of the "Speicherstadt".

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    Catch a show in one of Hamburg's great theatres

    by CatherineReichardt Updated Jul 13, 2012

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    (work in progress)
    Hamburg is a cultured place, so it should come as no surprise to know that it has a vibrant theatre scene.

    Plays may be a challenge for tourists who aren't German speaking, but if you fancy a night out at the theatre, there's no reason why your limited language skills should impede your enjoyment, as at any point in time, there are a number of musicals on offer. Some may have been translated into German (which can sometimes make for a slightly awkward lyrical fit), but even if this is the case, it shouldn't detract from your appreciation of the spectacle and music - especially if you're familiar with the English language version.

    The Lion King seems to have been playing for the entire eight years that I've been visiting Hamburg, and the reviews of the production that I've heard have been euphoric. However, the show that I've always wanted to see - and only got around to catching on our recent visit in July 2012 - is the stage adaptation of Disney's 'Tarzan' movie which is playing at the Neue Flora theatre.

    Of all the Disney feature length cartoon movies that I watched repeatedly with my kids when they were smaller, I would have to say that 'Tarzan' is one of my favourites, and I never understood why it was a relative flop at the box office. Based on the classic novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs about an orphan boy who is brought up by apes in the jungle, the Disney version has a good soundtrack by Phil Collins - yes, THE Phil Collins - and contains all the requisite elements of high energy, humour, pathos and good characterisation, leading to the ultimate triumph of the goodies over the baddies.

    The stage adaptation is an absolute triumph and you won't have to understand a word of German to appreciate it. Given the Tarzan theme, you'd naturally expect lots of swinging around on ropes, but I never imagined that ropes could be applied in such a versatile and imaginative manner! A good portion of the show takes place over the audience and it's hard not to get involved when the action is unfolding directly above your head: just expect to have a crick in your neck as a result! To appreciate this to best effect, try and arrange seats in the middle of the ground floor.

    A wonderful, feel good way to spend an evening!

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    Kemp's English Pub and the Star Club

    by Sibo10 Written May 13, 2012

    Kemp's English Pub - Run by Gibson (Star Club survivor) and Tina Kemp (of Les Humphrey's Singers fame) - is a small, cosy pub near the Alster. The walls are full of original photographs of the Beatles taken by (the) Astrid Kirchherr and who works occasionally in the kitchen with Gibson. There are Beatle books galore, posters and photographs of Star Club performers (including Gibson). The room is dominated by a giant pub sign brought from their previous pub in the UK.

    + Star Club reunion every first Friday of the month.
    + Music most Thursdays (pass the tin, collection)
    + London Pride and Newcastle Brown on tap
    + Hot food, freshly prepared - it's a tiny kitchen so order when you get there as it can take a while.

    The pub is DOG FRIENDLY. No problem bringing your (well behaved, non-killer) dog. Seen up to 6 at a time.

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    Reinhard Keiser in Hamburg

    by Nemorino Updated Feb 19, 2012

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    When Georg Friedrich Händel started playing in the orchestra at age eighteen, his boss was a man named Reinhard Keiser (1674-1739), who at the time was the General Manager and Chief Conductor of the Hamburg Opera.

    Keiser was one of the leading German composers of the baroque period. He composed at least sixty-five operas, most of which were premiered in Hamburg.

    His operas are now seldom performed. The only one I have ever seen was a comic opera called Der lächerliche Prinz Jodelet (The ridiculous Prince Jodelet), which was based on a play by the French dramatist Pierre Corneille (1606–1684).

    Jodelet in this opera was not a prince at all, but simply an idler or loafer (sort of like Schnabelewopski, come to think of it) who dressed up as a prince when the occasion arose. This led to a series of misunderstandings which I must admit were still quite funny when I saw the opera in Hamburg two hundred and seventy-eight years after its first performance.

    Second photo: Several business trips took me to or through Hamburg between 1996 and 2004. On most of these trips I was able to fit in at least one evening at the Hamburg State Opera, for instance to see Lucia di Lammermoor by Gaetano Donizetti (1797–1848) with Giusy Devinu in the title role. What I thought was unfair about this production was that they made her lie around on the floor of the stage for nearly twenty minutes (while people built a castle around her with building blocks) before she had to get up and start singing. The conductor of this production was Frédéric Chaslin, whom I had never heard of at the time. I later met him in Frankfurt. He was General Music Director of the opera in Mannheim for several years and is now Chief Conductor of the Santa Fe Opera in New Mexico. Chaslin is also a composer whose opera Wuthering Heights has been recorded, in part, with Andrew Richards in the lead tenor role.

    Third photo: The first opera performance I saw in Hamburg was a quite conventional staging of La traviata by Giuseppe Verdi, which I saw while I was on a business trip in 1996 and again on another business trip in 1998. I love La traviata and didn’t mind seeing it a second time, though the staging was a bit bland compared to other productions I have seen in Bonn, Hannover, Braunschweig, Darmstadt and Weikersheim, among other places. My favorite is still the classic Axel Corti staging at the Frankfurt Opera, in which Violetta dies not in her bed but on the floor of the second class waiting room in the railroad station in Orléans while she is trying to flee from the Nazis.

    Fourth photo: Another Verdi opera that I saw in Hamburg was Il trovatore (The Troubadour), in a rather abstract staging by Tilman Knabe. This is another opera that I have seen in several other places including the open-air lakeside stage in Bregenz, which is one of the few opera venues in the world where it is legal to take photos during the performance. So I took photos from two angles on two consecutive nights, and have linked them together in a series of tips that tell the whole story of the opera starting with an unusual security measure that I have seen only in Bregenz.

    Fifth photo: In Hamburg I have also seen one Mozart opera, Die Entführung aus dem Serail (The Abduction from the Serail), in a staging by Johannes Schaaf. This production, like many others of the same opera, must have puzzled a lot of people because of the cuts in the spoken dialogues that made it rather hard to understand the motivation of the characters, unless you knew the story already. (The Frankfurt staging by Christoph Loy is much better in this respect.)

    Next review: Außenalster

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