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Hamburg Insider Guide to Creativity and Underground Nightlife

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When in Hamburg, feed that creative soul of yours and dance like there’s no tomorrow! Hamburg is the second largest city of Germany and a cultural hub. It is filled with music venues, clubs, exhibitions, concerts, nightlife, cultural events and happenings. Hamburg’s green cityscape is relaxing and its 2,500 bridges, expressionist architecture and botanical gardens make for countless inspiring walks.

Getting There and Around

Whether by foot, hot hair balloon or catamaran, all ways lead to Hamburg! You can fly to Hamburg from any major European city, with flights as cheap as €10.- with Easyjet, Ryanair and other low-cost budget airlines. Trains with Deutsche Bahn or Buses with Flixbus are also popular alternatives if you are traveling from another city in Germany. Hamburg is only three hours away by bus from Berlin, and is a chill place to escape the hustle and bustle of the capital city.

Public transports in Hamburg are numerous and well connected. For S-bahn and U-bahn (underground), you need to buy a ticket at the Ticket Automat (click on the HVB Logo first!). For short trips of less than three stations, take a kurzstrecke ticket for €1,60.- For longer travels, check how many zones you are crossing or take a day ticket for €6,40.-. Compared to most cities I have travelled to, you do not need to compost your ticket here. The time and location is printed on the ticket, and the ticket is for immediate use.

Itinari Tip: Take enough cash out. Most shops, cafés and restaurants don’t take any bank cards (wait, what year is it? :-)).

Hip, Artsy and Trendy Shopping

Where to go for vegan food and design shopping? At "Die Schanze" say the locals. Shops near Sternschanze are hop and hip. The vary from small designer shops to trendy brands selectors to monochrome outfits, orient jewellery and home accessories. This is also the best place to find some vegan food and chaï latte in a cosy and comfy environnement. My favourite places are Haus 73 for a vegan brunch and breakfast with friends, and Golden Temple Teahouse to relax with a good book and Ayurvedic yoga tea.

Looking for some creative inspiration? St Pauli is the most popular district of Hamburg and where all the cool kids want to live. It is filled with shopping possibilities, music venues, museums and nightlife. The Sautter Lackmann Fachbuchhandlung bookshop is THE specialised bookshop for all creative souls out there. They specialise in Art, Design and Photography books. The vendors are knowledgeable and it is wise to plan at least one or two hours to browse through their heavy and impressive collection and personalised selections.

Co-Working the Afternoon Away

Escaping daily life, but not your job? Neither an office, nor a café, choose a co-working spot (with tables and café) to work the afternoon away. Betahaus co-working space café is a creative hub filled with office-less millenials, remote workers, young start-ups and digital nomads. Sofas are comfy, wifi is fast, maté and coffee choice is natural and alternative, and plug sockets outnumber the number of co-workers. Betahaus Hamburg also has a young sibling in Berlin, called Betahaus Berlin. As the official Bethaus headquarters, it offers so much more than just a cosy co-working café. Memberships give you access to the café and own everyday office table, the ability to book meeting rooms, attend workshops and seminars. I personally enjoy just dropping by when I feel the urgency to focus and meet a deadline, no strings attached.

Breathtaking View Over the City

End a nice evening city walk with a 360° Panorama view over Hamburg and Hamburger Port at Elbphilarmonie. Plaza tickets are free and give access to the Elbphilarmonie rooftop to enjoy a breathtaking view over the city. It is particularly beautiful in the evening when the fog sets amongst the ships and port structures. Long escalators take you up and down the symphony orchestra’s rooftop terrace and their white corridor decorated in round mirrors are also quiet impressive and creative.

© Photo by Marcus Goral

Hamburg Techno Nights and Techno Breakfasts

Just like Leipzig and Berlin, Hamburg is the perfect get away for nightlife enthusiasts and electronic music lovers. The most popular club in town used to be EGO Club, the Hamburg nightlife institution once managed by Solumun. The venue is now closed and has been replaced by Villa Nova. Techno lovers usually prefer Uebel & Gefährlich (meaning “sick and dangerous” in German) or PAL. Both clubs curate quality electronic music nights and weekenders from A-list Dj’s to local talents.

More alternative and undergroundi’sh, Golden Pudel is a small club near the port which re-opened its doors in summer 2017 after some renovations and security improvements. No hip, no hype, this underground techno club is very raw and its punk squat feel is not for high heels. Pudel is known for its daring experimental electronic music sets and unexpected line-ups.

And if you just can't get enough or just enjoy your Kellogs with techno, Frühclub is an electronic music concept which starts Sunday at 8am and runs till Monday morning. Ideal for a techno afternoon and Sunday fun, Frühclub is Hamburg’s favourite Sunday spot for music lovers.

© Article Header Photo credit by Ghita Katz Olsen


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The author

Isabel Elwood

Isabel Elwood

I am Isabel, Yoga Lover and Techno Schmetterling. I am passionate by everything that touches art and the soul ... as well as electronic music, which I write about.

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