Published: November 15th 2010November 14th 2010
Sailplanes in Boberg
They do winchtowing there.
Believe it or not. I spent TWO months in a row in Hamburg. And I had a great time. I might have mentioned it before
, but the city is really a beauty. So much to see and do. And it was great to have my mum around for a couple of days, and to spend weekends with my friends Hetty and Christiane, whom I hadn’t seen for a long time because they are just as busy as I am.
Let me introduce the city to you. As there is a lot of water, you can do different boat trips. There are two rivers, one of them is the Elbe, which is a large river that has only about 100 km to go from Hamburg until it joins the North Sea. As far as I know, Hamburg has the second biggest harbour in Europe, only Rotterdam is bigger. So on a harbour boat trip, they take you past all the landing piers where the really big ships are loaded and unloaded by huge cranes. And of course, there are all the docks where ships are maintained and repaired.
You can do another boat trip that takes you through the
The dune in Boberg
... only half an hour from the city centre of Hamburg, not far from the river Elbe.
warehouse district where in the old days, all the goods that were about to be shipped or had just arrived were stored. Some of the buildings are still used as stores, for example, for carpets or coffee, but others are museums or event locations nowadays. There is, for example, the “Miniaturwunderland”
, a fantastic model railway exhibition where they modelled several regions in the world, like the Alps or Hamburg. There is even Area 51
There is another river, the Alster, that forms a lake in the city centre. There is a little park around it, and there are most beautiful villas. A boat trip takes you past all these areas, including the wonderful “Stadtpark”, a big park.
The guides are just fantastic, I don’t know whether they tell the same jokes on every trip, but they usually make me laugh a lot because they have such a dry sense of humour.
The city is very green, it has a lot of trees, and, of course, water. From what I heard, Hamburg even has more bridges than Venice. So you can do a lot of very nice walks, even within the city. For example, walking
Boat trip on the Alster channels I
On the lake in the Stadtpark (big park in Hamburg), view towards the planetarium.
or cycling along the river Alster is most beautiful, very scenic. You are still in the city, but you don’t notice it because there are trees and grass, and you can’t hear the cars driving past on the nearby roads. You can also walk or cycle along the river Elbe, either right by the water, or on a path that is a bit higher up from where you have a beautiful view of the river.
Another nice place is the Wittmoor, a swamp area only half an hour out of town, where you can walk for hours, which I did with Christiane. And there are some dunes only half an hour out of town, the Boberger Düne. There is also a little airstrip for sailplanes there. I went there on a beautiful day, and after a nice walk, I sat down by the airstrip for a while and just watched the gliders take off and land.
Hamburg is not far from the sea. For example, the Timmendorfer Strand, a little town by the Baltic Sea, is just about 80 km from Hamburg, and it has a very nice beach, although it is really touristy. Lübeck, a very old
Boat trip on the Alster channels II
On the Binnenalster, the smaller part of the Alster lake. View towards Jungfernstieg and Town Hall.
city, is not very far either. It has beautiful old houses, the famous Holstentor, and a lot of little channels.
There are also a lot of cultural events in Hamburg. When I’m at a train station somewhere in the city, I’m always overwhelmed by all the posters announcing theatre, concerts, opera, cabaret, and much more. I went to a performance of “Hamlet” in the famous Thalia Theatre with my mum when she came to visit me for a couple of days. For me as a true Shakespeare fan, it was a “must” to watch the piece. It was just fantastic, the actors were great, and so was the production.
When my friend Hetty came to see me, we went to a concert together. Sarah, who used to go to school with me, is a singer now, and she sang the soprano solo in Brahms’ “Ein deutsches Requiem”. One morning, I went to the planetarium with my friend Mizzi, and we watched a show on what the stars meant to people in the old Egypt. Very interesting!
There was even an Oktoberfest in Hamburg. It was kind of unreal because it took place in a big building in
... beach about 80km from Hamburg.
the harbour. There were Bavarian flags on all walls and tables. There was a Bavarian band, and people were wearing Dirndl and Lederhosen. Traditional Bavarian food was offered, such as Hendl (roast chicken), Schweinshaxn (roast pork leg), and Brezn (prezel). Then you looked out of the window and saw a huge ship pass right in front of the window. Very strange! Another “must” for me was the facebook movie. As a facebook addict, I just had to watch it!
So in fact, Hamburg is an awesome place to live in. And there is still more to see and do. I’ll let you know what I try out next.
Please excuse the quality of the pictures, I haven’t got a new camera yet, so I took them all with my BlackBerry.
I flew to Stuttgart yesterday, will spend the weekend with my family, and then go to the hospital in Tübingen on Tuesday for a surgery. The doctors will take the plates out of my pelvis and leg. So please keep your fingers crossed for me that everything goes well.
There are more photos below