Located on the Elbe River where the Alster and Bille rivers converge, the Hamburg Port is a bustling transportation hub. Warm summer temperatures will require a sturdy pair of shorts, as temperatures average 70 degrees. But pack along a sweater for an evening stroll, as temperatures at the Hamburg port of call drop to the chilly mid 50s during the evenings.
A vast array of architecture can be found surrounding the Hamburg cruise port. Churches such as St. Nicholas’ gracefully adorn the skyline. There are also a few skyscrapers that cut through the skyline with their stately copper-plated roofs.
For that all-in-one shopping excursion, try the Europa-passage. Located in Ballindamm, in the heart of Hamburg, this exclusive location offers something for all travelers. Beyond shopping, the spectacular views of Alster Lake are supplemented by the 120 stores on this five floor shopping mall. From book stores (Thalia Books), shoes (Bianco, Street Super Shoes and Clarks), to clothing shops (Oska, Tommy Helfiger, Bennetton, Levi’s), there is something to satisfy everyone on your list.
Also be sure to visit the quirky, yet functional Kleidermarkt for quality vintage clothing. Great buys on coats, hats and shirts for men and women, as well as women's dresses and skirts for the inspired shopper can be found. Second hand clothes for the hip and trendy can be found at Hot Dogs on Markstrasse. Shoes, accessories and vintage t-shirts, coupled with friendly staff, makes this an excellent stop.
It's called a fish market, but don’t let the name fool you. The Altona Fish Market has anything and everything including fish for sale. Open early Sunday morning, it is a refreshing change to the more formal shopping malls near port.
Things to Do
Take some time to visit the famous Speicherstadt, which houses a complex of museums and storage buildings more than 110 years-old. The buildings are linked together by a system of canals and were once used as a free trading zone for goods from all over the world. These days they house museums such as Miniature-Wunderland, Hamburg Dungeon, Speicherstadt-museum, Deutsches Zollmuseum and Dialog im Dunkel.
Hamburg would not be complete without a visit to the City Center. While in the main cosmopolitan area, you'll want to investigate the various examples of exceptional architecture. The Hulbe-Haus has intricate details punctuating it from top to bottom. The Nikolai-fleet on Deichstrasse is also a beautiful place to spend some time. These ancient row homes constructed in the 17th Century now house restaurants and terraced coffee shops.
Restaurants and Bars
Take a rest from visiting one of the many downtown highlights with a well deserved break at the Essen und Trinken. This restaurant/market offers numerous choices for all age groups. Affordable and fast, a scrumptious meal can be enjoyed here while on a short break from shopping or site seeing.
Take a break and have a refreshing local lager, Astra, while in Hamburg, or sample one of the fine coffees on one of the many terraced coffee shops.
There are also a wide variety of good pubs within walking distance from port. Locals would recommend the Shamrock Irish Pub, known to be the oldest Irish pub in Germany.