Hamburg and Hannover
The northernmost cities are an interesting mix. They have a history stretching back many hundreds of years, but are culturally and commercially modern cities. Hamburg has a huge working harbour, while Hannover is renowned as a cultural centre and a venue for conferences and trade fairs. Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg Autostadt, situated nearby, is a popular attraction as well as a working factory.
Hamburgers tend to navigate by two things – the spire of St. Michael’s Church (‘Michel’) and the inner and outer parts of the Alster, a huge lake at the heart of the city. Around them you’ll find an environmentally conscious city that’s great for shopping, partying, culture and much more.
If you’re in town at the right time, try the thrice-yearly Hamburger Dom funfair (which takes place near St. Pauli, the nightlife district that has a popular local football team) or the lively Anniversary of the Harbour festival in early May.
Stadium and football team: AOL Arena, Hamburger SV
Travelling to Hamburg: Hamburg airport is just 8 km away from the city. Direct trains run from a number of German and European cities: on InterCityExpress (ICE) trains Hamburg is three and a half hours from Frankfurt, two from Berlin and five from Munich. Direct trains also run from Cuxhaven, the city’s nearest port.
Almost due south of Hamburg, on the banks of the Leine, is Hannover. Here a ‘Red Thread’ painted on the pavement leads you on a heritage trail around the city, while over 40 different theatres, several museums and the famous opera house compete with the exclusive shops of Georgstrasse for your attention.
At Herrenhausen, a 300-year old baroque royal garden, seasonal theatre performances and firework competitions are held throughout the summer period. Other nearby attractions include the (literally) fairytale town of Hameln and the Marienburg castle, where guests tour the building in felt slippers.
Stadium and football team: AWD Arena, Hannover 96
Travelling to Hannover: Hannover airport is 12 km from the city. Hannover is the most important rail hub in northern Germany, with InterCityExpress (ICE) , InterCity (IC), EuroCity (EC) and InterRegio (IR) services. Drivers should use the A7 and A2 autobahns.
Now try answering the following questions. You’ll need to take account of the information on this page, and do some further reading atwww.germany-tourism.co.uk. Pay particular attention to: