By now, it should be evident that Hamburg is all about art and architecture. Fuel up first at Gasthaus an der Alster, an authentic, traditional German pub with great options for both meat lovers and vegetarians. Then take a short stroll over to Kunsthalle, one of the largest and finest galleries in Germany with a wealth of European masterpieces from the Middle Ages on.
Continue your museum hopping at the Deichtorhallen, which showcases outre contemporary art and photography. Then visit Hamburg’s most out-there building, the Chilehaus, a paradigm of the short-lived 1920s Brick Expressionism style.
For something a little different, head to Hamburg’s cult football club, FC St Pauli. Even if your trip to Hamburg doesn’t coincide with a home game, you can take a tour of the stadium.
Autumn visitors will also get to enjoy the Hamburg Filmfest, which runs every end-September to early-October.
5pm – 7pm: Go shopping in central Hamburg
With most shops open into the evening, there’s plenty of time for retail therapy. You’ll find the usual high street stores lining Mönckebergstrasse. For arts and crafts, walk the Karoviertel district, where you’ll find Lockengelöt, a quirky store which upcycles old everyday items for modern-day use—think closets made from oil drums retrieved from the harbour!
For luxury designer pieces, wander around upmarket shopping street Neuer Wall. And for idiosyncratic indie fashion, stroll the Schanzenviertel, often considered the counter-cultural centre of the city.
If shopping isn’t for you, find respite at Planten un Blomen Park instead. There is a botanical garden with a tropical greenhouse and the largest Japanese garden in Europe can be found here.
7pm – 9pm: Feast on Hamburg’s seafood and grab a beer
Getting peckish? About time. Hamburg is a fish and seafood haven, where you’ll find unstuffy restaurants like La Sepia, which serves up a great traditional Portuguese grilled cuttlefish with olive oil. Meat lovers will enjoy Bullerei’s sauce-slathered steaks, and the beef roulade at Parlament.
Once you’ve had your fill, it’s time for a beer. Germany is world-famous for its beer culture—and Hamburg is no exception. There are several outstanding brewpubs, from the historic Groeninger Privatbrauerei to Überquell, an avant-garde craft microbrewery facing the riverside.
You’ll also find live music everywhere—try the Mojo Club or Golden Pudel Club.
9pm – late: Sip on drinks and go dancing in St Pauli or stroll through the Elbe tunnel