FOLLOW US

World Travel Guide > Guides > Europe > Germany > Hamburg

Hamburg Weather

11°C

Local time Hamburg

Currency

Getting around Hamburg

Public transport

Public transport in Hamburg is popular, efficient and used by almost everyone. Buses travel around the clock, including a special Nachtbus (night bus) service, and the hub is centrally located at Rathausmarket by the town hall.

HVV (tel: +49 40 19449; www.hvv.de) runs Hamburg’s excellent integrated system combining rapid transit rail, regional rail, buses and harbour ferries.

The U-Bahn (Unterbahn, underground railway) and S-Bahn (Schnellbahn, rapid transit light railway) form a very useful, interlinked network. You must buy tickets for the U-Bahn, S-Bahn and all regional trains in advance. You can buy individual tickets per journey, but if you are around for a day or more, it is worth investing in an All Day ticket, which offers unlimited travel for one adult and three children under the age of 15. The 9am Day Ticket offers the same but is only valid after 0900.

The Happy Weekend ticket allows unlimited travel for up to five people on Saturday and Sunday. The Hamburg Card, which you can buy at the tourist office, gives unlimited travel on all public transport and grants free or reduced-price admission to many top attractions and excursions.

You can buy all travel-only tickets from automated ticket machines at the stations or from bus drivers.

Taxis

Taxis in Hamburg are easily available throughout the day, and can be hailed in the streets or taken from the frequent taxi stands, which are signified by a green box on a raised post.

For advance booking, reputable companies include Das Taxi (tel: +49 40 22 11 22), Hansa Taxi (tel: +49 40 211 211) and Taxiruf (tel: +49 40 44 10 11).

Driving

Driving in Hamburg has all the drawbacks of driving and parking as in any other major city and is not recommended. Note that if you do drive, you can leave your car free-of-charge at one of the HVV park-and-ride facilities (see www.hvv.de for more information) at rapid transit and regional rail stations which avoids the hassle of finding an inner-city car park.

Car hire

Car hire operators in Hamburg include Avis (tel: +49 40 5075 2314; www.avis.com), Europcar (tel: +49 40 335 941; www.europcar.com) and Hertz (tel: +49 40 5935 1367; www.hertz.com). You usually have to be at least 21 years old to hire a car, although some companies charge a surcharge if you're under 25.

Bicycle hire

Hamburg’s StadtRAD bikeshare scheme (tel: +49 40 8221 88100; stadtrad.hamburg.de/kundenbuchung/) has hundreds of unmistakable, pillar-box-red bikes neatly lined up at numerous rental points across the city. Often located outside U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations, StadtRAD bikes are free for the first half hour. 

Featured Hotels

SEE MORE

Fritzhotel

Located in the Sternschanze area opposite a park and just beside the U-Bahn and S-Bahn stations, this is a smart, modern and clean hotel in Hamburg that's intimate enough to have a character of its own. Its 17 single and double rooms are well proportioned, some even have balconies, and the local vicinity, which has a reputation as something of an artists' quarter, offers plenty of pleasant green spaces, cafés and bars.

Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten

Old-fashioned opulence on a regal scale. Many regard this enormous 19th-century townhouse on the edge of the Inner Alster Lake, comprising 156 rooms and 32 suites, as the best hotel in Hamburg, and consequently there's a price tag to match. Well located for shopping but a little off the beaten track for much of the city's nightlife.

The Westin Hamburg

One of Hamburg's newest five star hotels, the Westin is located high up above the recently opened Elbphilharmonie concert hall complex, meaning that the views from its rooms and suites are pretty spectacular. It's also in the heart of the harbour district with all its attractions and points of interest.

Le Royal Méridien Hamburg

Spectacular, mammoth and immaculate, this imposing residence offers pretty much everything you could wish for; architecture that seamlessly blends the contemporary and traditional, a swimming pool, solarium, conference and ball rooms, business facilities, a highly regarded ninth-floor restaurant and bar with amazing views, and a total of 284 rooms and suites.

CityHotel Monopol

For those who like to be in the thick of it, this cheap hotel in Hamburg is centrally positioned along the raucous Reeperbahn's nightlife mile. Fortunately, all of its 80-plus rooms are fully soundproofed, but this is certainly the perfect place to stay for the budget-conscious party crowd.

Hotel Wedina

A more intimately proportioned boutique hotel situated in a quiet residential area near Alster Lake, this Hamburg establishment's tasteful décor is more focused on comfort than cool. There's an attractive garden with a pool, Staff are friendly, and the hotel prides itself on providing sanctuary to a number of heavyweight literary guests.