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German Group

Ein Wiedersehen in Hamburg

Hamburg from the Alster Most of those at the lunch met up again on 31st August to travel to Hamburg for 4 days – yet another opportunity to practise our Museum ShipsGermanskills. (That’s our story, anyway!)  Margaret McDermott very efficiently arranged our travel and booked us into an excellent hotel (Hotel Baseler Hof) within walking distance of all the main sights and close to bus and underground stops.

 During our stay we had ample opportunity to sample the delights of this truly interesting city.
Town Hall
Hamburg has proudly maintained its
Town Hall Fountainindependence since the Middle Ages when it was one of the leading Hanseatic ports and even today it is an independent city state within the Federal Republic, its parliament meeting in the ornate Renaissance-style town hall. 

You are constantly aware of its strong maritime traditions, although it is some distance from the open sea.

visit is complete without a boat trip around the harbour where a variety of vessels, ranging from the most up-to-date container ships and tankers to sailing ships and paddle steamers are on view.
On the trip round the harbour On the trip round the harbour Our River Taxi

Water is everywhere in Hamburg and some parts of the city are Reminiscent of Venice?reminiscent of Venice with its numerous canals and bridges. There are more bridges in Hamburg than in Paris, Amsterdam and Venice put together.

 Margaret, fortuitously, arranged for us to be there at just the right time, during the Alster Vergnuegen, aThe Shanty Choir festival held the first weekend of September along the shores of the Alster, Hamburg’s large inner city lake.

There were pop concerts, shanty choirs, masses of stalls selling crafts and foods of many nations Firework Displayand a firework display every evening.

Unfortunately we had no real cause to sample the culinary delights on offer as we were too well fed in the hotel. The breakfasts were particularly splendid, though some balked at starting the day with roll mops, smoked salmon and fishballs.

Dinner in the Hotel Dinner in the Hotel

 Although we did some things as a group, we often went our separate ways to indulge our own particularThe Light Show interests. For three of us, this meant getting up at 5.30 on Sunday morning to visit the fish market (open from 5 to 10 am) so as to get back in time for breakfast. Everything imaginable is on sale and there are some amazing bargains in fruit and vegetables, cheese and chocolate as well as all kinds of fish, all sold with humour and flair by the extravert dealers with their humorous patter. Some visited Hagenbecks Zoo, the first in the world without cages while others went to see the largest model railway in the world and the spice museum , both situated in the Speicherstadt – the old warehouse district which now houses several interesting museums. A highlight for most of us was a light show in a nearby park (called Planten un Blomen). Illuminated fountains danced in time to the music of Greig – a free show every evening!
A Welcome Break from sightseeing


 Our four days went by  too quickly, and although we managed to see and do a lot, we have left much to enjoy on a future visit.