From: Hamburg City Guide
Sightseeing on land
Start your sightseeing in the city center, using the tourist office's free Hamburg Map and sightseeing brochures. (You might also want to purchase a guidebook: The English-language edition of Marco Polo: Hamburg is available at most bookstores, and it has everything you're likely to need for a tourist visit of a few days.)
In the heart of the city, you'll find the or Town Hall next to the lake. (Guided Rathaus tours are available.)
In the vicinity are canals that lead to the harbor, historic churches (several with tower observation platforms), the romantic streets around the , and plenty of places to spend your money (see our shopping page).
To the west, in the district, you'll find the notorious streets around the . The former sailors' quarter still has a municipally-supervised red-light district with limited hours, but these days it's better known for nightclubs, bars, and the Beatles (who played at various clubs in the neighborhood half a century ago).
Don't miss Hamburg's , where you'll find views of the busy harbor, ferries, museum ships, and other things to see and do.
Nearby, the canals and brick warehouses of the early 20th Century connect with the new HafenCity, or Harbor City, a massive real-estate development that will increase Hamburg's inner-city by 40 per cent when it's finished in the next decade or two.
If you'd like to take general-interest or specialized tours on foot, see Hamburg Tourism's English-language "Guided City Walks" page for up-to-date information about tours that range from a "Majors Walk" through the city center to the "Historical Whore Tour" with "Whore Magdalena" (whose services, other than guiding, aren't for sale). Or try Hamburg Free Walking Tours, which offers daily tours of the historic center and the St. Pauli district.
Finally, if you can afford a private guide, Dr. Tomas H. Kaiser won't disappoint you.
Sightseeing by boat
Public water buses, sightseeing boats, and water taxis make it easy to enjoy Hamburg's from the Wasser without getting your feet wet. For details, read our Sightseeing Boats and Harbor Tours article.
Next page: Museums, attractions
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