When visiting Germany or spending your au pair year in Germany, Hamburg should definitely be on your bucket list. This port city of red-brick houses is just magical, which attracts many tourists every year and tends to make things quite expensive as well. Nevertheless, there are also plenty of things you can do on a smaller budget. Don't miss our plans below, whether you're just visiting for a weekend or spending a whole year in Hamburg as an au pair.
1. Get on a boat at the harbour
I don't mean one of those tourist boats which charge you 15 euros a ride. Instead, just buy a day-ticket for public transportation and get on the public ferry number 62. It will take you to the most important spots of the port! Jump on at „Landungsbrücken“ and get off at Anleger Finkenwerder. From there, take Ferry 64 to Teufelsbrück (and keep reading Plan Number 2).
2. Walk along the bank of the Elbe and enjoy Hamburg's beach
From Teufelsbrück there is a wonderful promenade along the Elbe River. You can either walk or rent a bike and enjoy the mansions and old houses. Along this promenade you will also come to Hamburg's beach, so just relax and sunbathe a little bit (if the season allow it!) - free of charge!
3. St. Pauli-Elbtunnel
Experiencing the river could also be interesting if you do it under water and for free! You can cross the river through this tunnel which dates back to 1911. Once you're done, don't miss the St. Pauli district, different in its own special way.
4. Old warehouses & a new "Hafenstadt" (Harbour City)
The old warehouses in Hamburg deserve some hours of strolling. Just cross the different bridges at different levels until you reach the Poggenmühlen-Brücke, where you will find an amazing surprise (even more if you happen to see it at dawn).
The new Hafenstadt with the Elbphilarmonie is worth a stroll as well. Old and New Hamburg come together in this area amazingly well.
5. Learn about Hamburg history - Operation Gomorrah
In July 1943, the city of Hamburg was bombed in an attack called Operation Gomorrah. This bombing campaign literally destroyed the city. If you're interested in history or just want to learn more about how World War II affected Hamburg, don't miss the exhibition at the St. Nicholas Church for just a 5€ entrance fee.
6. Do some shopping at this second-hand bookstore
If you happen to love books and bargains, you shouldn't miss a second-hand bookstore located under the City Hall. They have quite cheap books in different languages. So enjoy the views of the City Hall, the "kleine Alster" and… treat yourself to a new used book at the Rathauspassage!
Have you already been to Hamburg? Did you enjoy some other low-budget possibilities? Share them with us!
And if Hamburg has caught your attention, think about taking an au pair gap year and spending it in this amazing city!