Visiting Hamburg is always a good idea, the city is full of interesting things to see and do. But during Christmas season, this city dresses itself up as Christmassy as possible. Numerous Christmas markets take over the city, everything is decorated. There is to say, events are happening everywhere and the expectation of a snowy season is always high. That dreamy Christmas that you see in books and movies is real and is here for you to enjoy.
1. The Christmas Markets around the city
There are more Christmas Markets in Hamburg than days in December for you to visit them, and each one has its history and particular charm. I selected my three favorites to show you and in addition, here’s a map so you can go Christmas Market hunting.
With almost three million visitors per year, this popular Christmas market in front of the historic Hamburg City Hall has as a motto “art instead of commerce”. Instead of popcorn, there are Nuremberg gingerbreads. Instead of plastic, you can find crafted and unusual gift ideas. They have a mesmerising “Toy Street” with everything handcrafted. In addition to all beauty, the food and mulled wine (red and white) are delicious!
Hamburg’s “cool” Christmas market is here to end the boundaries between the conventional Christmas tradition and the heartfelt love of life. In the heart of Hamburg, at Reeperbahn, the Santa Pauli Christmas market lures you with live music on the show stage and you can see “angels” in the SANTA PAULI Strip tent . Also, you can find creative (and sensual) gifts at this market.
In addition, if you’re looking for comfy sofas and “fireplaces”, the Winter Deck is the right place for you. There you can try the delicious “curb swallow”, hot “nutcracker” or mulled cola to enjoy.
Not to mention the delicacies and beautiful white pagodas, there’s a Christmas lounge area, an advent calendar and a large ice skating rink (7 euros if you don’t have the skates) awaiting for you in Überseeboulevard this year. The 15m high festively decorated Christmas tree also spreads a Christmas spirit.
At this Christmas market, the physical well-being is ensured. Healthy dishes as such as red cabbage make gourmet hearts beat faster. Delicious mulled wine and punch can also be enjoyed in the Christmas lounge. Especially cozy outdoor sofas are available everywhere on the Christmas market.
The food at the markets
Kartoffelpuffer, vegan sausage, bread with cheese and champignon, fried champignon and anything else you decide to try, will be delicious. Germans are good with street food and you won’t be left without options if you’re vegetarian or vegan.
2. The ice rink at Planten un Blomen
A big ice rink is mounted in the middle of the Planten un Blomen park during winter. For only 6,50 euros you can rent your ice skates and free your inner Tonya Harding (or at least try). There’s also a bar and a cafe.
3. The Christmas Parade
On four Saturdays in December, more than the mulled wine and the lovely Christmas decorations around Hamburg make you feel joyful. The merry vibes are highlighted by the Christmas parades. Twice a day, elves, angels and gingerbreads go on a dancing parade through the city centre, followed by Santa Claus himself, colourful parade floats and festive music music.
The parades start at 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. leaving from Mönckebergstrasse in front of Saturn.
4. The church choirs and events
The oldest of the five main churches of Hamburg. This venerable building was first officially mentioned in records in 1195. Sacred music has been a distinguished tradition in there for many centuries. Choirs happens here every advent Saturday at 19 o’clock. The entrance is free of charge.
Located on the World Heritage site Speicherstadt, the St. Katharinen Christmas choir will happen on Saturday (December 22) 5:00 pm. The entrance is free of charge.
St. Michel, as known by the locals, is one of Hamburg’s five Lutheran main churches and the most famous in the city. Concerts, Organ festivals and New years Eve concerts take place every year during December. You can buy your tickets at their website.