Hamburg Culture and Entertainment
From: Hamburg City Guide
For symphonic music, you have two top choices: the Philharmonisches Staatsorchester (which is part of the opera company), and the Klassikphilharmonie Hamburg (formerly the Hamburg Mozart Orchestra) which has concerts in two formats: as a chamber orchestra with 23 musicians or as a chamber symphony orchestra with 55.
When you're in Hamburg, check with the local tourist office for information about choral concerts and other events.
Hamburg has an active theatre scene, with shows that range from serious plays to musical comedies imported from Broadway. Most are in German, but the English Theatre of Hamburg (Germany's oldest professional English theatre) offers new plays, modern classics by George Bernard Shaw and other playwrights, and the occasional Neil Simon confection.
The St. Pauli district is the focus of Hamburg's club scene. We don't pretend to be experts on local nightlife--and even if we were, the definition of what's hot and what's not may have changed by the time you read this. Check Hamburg Tourism's "Pubs & Bars" listings and event calendar to see what's on during your visit, and pick up a copy of the tourist office's free Hamburg St. Pauli: The Reeperbahn Experience brochure.
Hamburg's red-light district around the Reeperbahn isn't what it once was, partly because fewer men need to pay for sex in the 21st Century. Another factor may be changes in the maritime industry. (Containerships have largely replaced traditional freighters, which means the population of horny sailors has declined sharply in the last few decades.)
Today, street prostitutes offer their services on the at certain hours of the day, and you can ask "How much is that woman in the window?" in the (Hamburg's answer to Amsterdam), which is screened off from neighboring streets and open only to men over 18.
If you prefer a less hands-on approach to prostitution, the may whet your intellectual appetite. (Check the information page and timetable to see whether English-language tours are scheduled during your visit.)
Like its counterparts in York, Amsterdam, and several other European cities, the Hamburg Dungeon is a cross between a theme-park ride, a Halloween haunted house, and a history tour. The attraction's pitch line is "600 years of dark history, 10 shows, 2 scary rides in one unique experience."
Next page: Shopping in Hamburg
2nd inset photo copyright © Arne Thaysen.
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