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Night falls over Hamburg city

Compare the best Hamburg city breaks

Although it may be only Germany's second-largest city, Hamburg has a fine international reputation and is a fantastic place for a city break with family, friends or as a couple.

Why go?

TravelSupermarket compares prices on a range of Hamburg city breaks. Read on to find out about some of the city's highlights...

Located in the north of Germany, sitting on the mighty River Elbe, Hamburg is a great place to take a city break, whoever you are with. There is plenty on offer for people of all ages, such as museums and attractions, while couples and groups of friends will also enjoy the wide range of nightlife that the city offers. As a city with a long maritime history, the best way to experience this is by taking a boat trip along one of the canals, as the city has more bridges than Amsterdam, Venice and London put together. The artificial Lake Alster - along with the parks that surround it - is an important feature of the city.

If you're looking for family-friendly places to visit, try the Hagenback Zoo and the Botanical Gardens. You might also want to visit the St Michaelis church and tower, as well as the Rathaus (Hamburg's Town Hall) and the Chilehaus, a unique example of Brick Expressionism architecture.

While there's plenty on offer for families to enjoy, there's much to attract those without children to Hamburg. Places include the Philharmonic Hall and the Reeperbahn, which has a great atmosphere and can help you find out more about the Beatles' connection with the city. Shopping in Hamburg is excellent; all the major German department stores, as well as a huge range of restaurants and bars serving all kinds of food (especially seafood), are represented here.

Book a Hamburg city break and you'll fly into Hamburg Airport (HAM), which is a 30-minute drive from the city centre. Getting into Hamburg from Hamburg Airport is easy thanks to a range of public transport options, as well as taxis and hire cars. Hop on the S-Bahn train into central Hamburg from the airport and be in the city centre in 25 minutes. Alternatively, a number of buses stop directly outside the airport terminals and travel into the city centre. Depending on the route and the number of stops, this journey can take up to an hour, though it's a reasonably priced option. Licensed taxis are available from designated ranks outside the arrivals terminals. Fix the price of your journey before you set off.

Getting around on Hamburg weekend breaks is also simple. An extensive network of buses and trains operate in and around Hamburg, with good links to most areas of interest. The central part of the city is well connected even in the early hours of the morning, with late-running and early-starting trains, and a night-bus service. A number of ferries run in Hamburg, though they do cost more than buses and trains. Taxis are reasonably priced and easy to find in Hamburg. For travel on two wheels, this bicycle-friendly city has a number of hire options, including the StadtRAD Hamburg scheme with hire stations throughout the city, if you'd like to see the sights by bike.

If you're planning a trip to Hamburg this year and need some help, read our fact file below and use TravelSupermarket's search tool to find the cheapest deals.

When to go?

City breaks to Hamburg are always popular: in summer it's a pleasure to soak up the sun and the sights, while Christmas is also magical...

Hamburg has a coastal climate, meaning that the warmest months to visit are June, July and August, while December, January and February tend to be the coldest.

Short breaks to Hamburg are most in demand during the summer months of July and August, and in December for the Christmas markets. Book early to secure the cheapest deals on Hamburg weekend breaks.

What's on?

As you'd expect from a city the size of Hamburg, there are many festivals and events taking place throughout the year...

Hamburg Marathon; April: Hamburg plays host to many sporting events throughout the year, such as the Hamburg Marathon and the Hamburg Masters tennis event. Thousands of runners pound the city streets each spring at one of Germany's biggest competitive races. While you might not be interested in taking part or watching, you should be aware of the date as many streets will be closed off for the race and hotels will be extremely busy.

Hafengeburtstag; May: There are annual street festivals such as Gay Pride and the Alster Fair in Hamburg, as well as the Hafengeburtstag, a funfair that celebrates the Port of Hamburg. Said to be the biggest and best harbour festival in the world, it's essentially a birthday party for the all-important harbour. There are parades of ships, fairground rides, seafood suppers, live music and much more.

Christmas markets; December: In December there are Christmas markets held in Rathaus Square and other places throughout the city. The best is undoubtedly in the shadow of the town hall, where circus artists serve drinks, Santa Claus meets children, tempting smells of baked goods drift on the crisp air and shoppers hunt for festive bargains.

Why go?

Hamburg is an excellent short-break destination, whenever you plan to travel. There's a special holiday memory waiting to be made here...

Romance: Take a trip with your loved one high above the Hamburg skyline in the High Flyer Balloon. Time your romantic trip just right to see the sun setting on the horizon.

Shopping: The huge Europa Passage is an indoor shopping centre of gargantuan proportions. There are five floors crammed with shops. For al fresco shopping, take in the window displays along Moenckebergstrasse or visit one of Hamburg's lively markets.

Families: Bring the world down to a more manageable size for little minds at Miniatur Wunderland, claimed to be the world's largest model railway. Tour miniature parts of Europe, as well as a tiny slice of America.