Tips for cruise passengers and visitors to Hamburg

Extend your stay in Hamburg with a journey of discovery and enjoyment in one of Germany’s most beautiful cities.

Its geographic location and modern infrastructure make the city ideal for passenger change-over. As a result, Hamburg, on the banks of the Elbe, is the start and/or end port for many cruise passengers. This makes it ideal for combining a cruise with a city trip.

Our network has a few extras, especially tailored for cruise passengers. And you will find even more exciting offers at Hamburg Tourism, with HVV Website giving you the best public transport connections to get there.

Speedboat Tours

With RIB Piraten speedboat tours, you can enjoy an adrenalin-fuelled tour of the harbour. Safety comes first, of course, in terms of both crew and equipment. The boat captains are all official instructors who work full-time as captains with an unlimited patent or who gained their sailing qualifications in the navy.

Private Tours

Sea air and the aroma of coffee is Hamburg’s signature scent. offers exciting city tours that give you the flavour of this famous Hanseatic city. Take an intimate city tour for two or a half-day excursion or a small group tour. Tours are usually available all year round and bookable at short notice.

Come Face to Face …

… with Angela Merkel or Robbie Williams or any number of celebrities, public figures and megastars when you visit Hamburg’s Panoptikum. Founded in 1879, Germany’s oldest waxworks museum (located in the St. Pauli quarter on Spielbudenplatz) is an assembly of the great and the good, featuring over 120 figures form the arts, politics and history.

Extend your Stay

Designed for both comfort and style, the 4-star AMERON Hamburg Hotel Speicherstadt is not far from the HafenCity cruise terminal. It offers cruise packages for guests and is the ideal place to start or end your cruise. As well as complementary drink on arrival and the Vitality Spa, other services include packed lunches for day tripping and free parking for the first 24 hours. Special rates on application.

Terrace Views

Located on the Elbchaussee, the Hotel Louis C. Jacob is steeped in history. The hotel’s Lindenterrasse, which dates back to 1791, offers breathtaking river views that inspired the painter Max Liebermann. Transfers to the Hamburg cruise terminal are available, as is car parking for the duration of your cruise.

Hard Rock Cafe

Located in the historic manufacturing buildings of St. Pauli Landungsbrücken, the HARD ROCK CAFE HAMBURG is a magnet for music fans as well as lovers of classic American food. The roof terrace and bar offer excellent views and the shop (10 am-12 am) sells the famous Hard Rock t-shirts and other memorabilia. Our voucher entitles cruise passengers to a small souvenir (€30 min. spend).

Access all Areas

The Hamburg Card gives visitors to the Hanseatic city free access to buses, trains and harbour trips and a 50% discount at over 150 tourist attractions. The card also includes free use of the Hamburg app. The Hamburg Card is available as a single or group card, for one day or up to five days.

On the Waterfront

No visit to Hamburg would be complete without a tour of the harbour. For a tour through dikes, locks, the Speicherstadt warehouse district and the container port, head down to the St. Pauli Landungsbrücken piers, where you’ll find a wide selection of boats to choose from. There’s even a Mississippi steamer – the Louisiana Star, which is the flagship of the Abicht river tour company. Tours are also available in English (e.g. from Barkassen-Meyer, daily at 1pm).

Off on a hike

“Der Wanderer” over the Sea of Fog is a painting by Caspar David Friedrich from around 1818 – and the best-known “back figure” of the painter, whose 250th birthday is coming up in 2024. The Wanderer and many other exhibits can be found in Hamburg’s Kunsthalle Startseite. Simply wander there!


Hamburg, on the banks of the Elbe, has unique cruise experiences in store — on board and on land. Celebrities launching ships, the thousands of lights making up the Blue Night illuminations, first visits, and ship parades with firework displays and stunning backdrops for photographers. The highlights of the calendar are the major festivals, the Hafengeburtstag port festival every May and Hamburg Cruise Days, held every two years in September.

Check out the Hamburg event database for this year’s highlights, current musicals, exhibitions, and tips for accommodation and restaurants.

834th Hamburg Port Anniversary

This year, Hamburg will once again traditionally celebrate its Hafengeburtstag at the beginning of May. The festival will take place from 5 to 7 May 2023. In Hamburg, this festival is celebrated on the occasion of the founding of the port in 1189 and not, as is customary in other cities, on the occasion of the founding of the city.

You can look forward to the tugboat ballet, fireworks, spectacular entry and run-up parades. In addition, there will be an action-packed open-air mile on the riverbank.

Hamburg Cruise Days

The Hamburg Cruise Days will take place this year from 8 to 10 September. The Elbe metropolis will celebrate this superlative cruise event for the 8th time in 2023.

The harbour and the Speicherstadt will be staged as Blue Port with elaborate light art, while an entire fleet of majestic passenger liners will turn the Elbe into a catwalk. Every two years, this open-air event in Hamburg is a real magnet for visitors.

Seatrade Europe

In the run-up to Hamburg Cruise Days 2023, experts from all over the world will meet in Hamburg from September 06 to 08 to discuss challenges and trends for the European cruise industry.

The conference, held every two years in Hamburg, is one of the most important industry events. Prior to Corona, 2019 Seatrade Europe was attended by 5,000 visitors and over 260 exhibitors from more than 45 countries.

The most attractive Lookouts for Shipspotters

Take a short cruise on a historic ship

The maritime tradition of Hamburg also encompasses a fleet of well-preserved historic museum ships that regularly tour the port and the Elbe. Passengers and groups are welcome and they may also be chartered. The view of the great liners moored at the quays of Hamburg, seen from the water, is simply magnificent. Extra tours and escort voyages are offered for special events.

Photos:, / Christian Spahrbier (Hafengeburtstag) & bcs Media (CruiseDays); Hamburg Messe & Congress / Tom Kohler; Photos of the Tips: With the friendly support of our members.