Never realised before, but Hamburg is only 3.5-hours driving from my house. In other words, peanuts. And, as I discovered recently, very worthwhile.

Just a few days away with my love. We left our children at home in good care with my sister-in-law, who came over with the whole family. So, with great confidence we jumped in the car on a Friday afternoon. After a short stop at a “schnitzel paradise” along the highway, we arrived half past nine in our hotel. Le Méridien hotel, overlooking the Alster, the inner lake of Hamburg. Not cheap, but we deserved it according to ourselves. On the top floor is a restaurant and bar with a stunning view on the lake, where we quickly settled and enjoyed the delicious cocktails! Le Méridien hotel, address, An der Alster 52, 20099 Hamburg.

Hamburg, a very rich city in a broad sense. Literally, if you look at the beautiful houses along the water, but you also see the raw edges of a port city full of industry. We had some luck with the weather. So, we decided to explore the city by bike. The StadtradHamburg is a city bike concept. You download the App, you register, you pay for a day pass (in our case) and then take a bicycle from one of many docking stations. It couldn’t have been easier. Click here to find out more.

A colleague had advised us where to have lunch, a vegan lunch. Precisely what we were looking for haha! Nasch, located at the edge of the city center where all the shops are. From the outside it looks a bit dark and schmutzig, to use some German. But gosh, I haven’t had such a tasty sandwich in a long time and the coffee was really good too. There is a terrace where you can sit in the sun. You can only pay cash (yes it still exists). Nasch, address: Caffamacherreihe 49, 20355 Hamburg.

Thereafter we cycled along the south side of the lake to our next destination. The Supper Club. Somewhat hidden on a side branch of the lake, this beach club pops up, without a beach. You can rent canoes, pedal boats and SUP boards. Yes, I am a fan after my SUP & Yoga trip to Portugal last year, check my blog. The water was only 8°C, so falling into the water was not an option. A tour with a little headwind to the Inner Alster took us more than 1.5 hours. It was great though, being so active after staring at your laptop all week.

After a snack on the quay and a sip of water we paddled back again. Considerably faster. The Supper Club has a bar, a nice terrace and a small menu for refreshments and a little burger. Pay in cash too! Supper Club, address: Isekai 13, 20249 Hamburg.

The sun had made me sweat and a shower in the hotel was very much needed. Fortunately I had used my own wetsuit, but the wetsuit also needed a bath. We had also time to explore the spa of the hotel! The pool was shivering cold, which is why the Turkish steam bath and sauna were a welcome heat source.

In the evening, Otto’s Burger was on the program. After some research, it turned out that this restaurant serves the “Beyond Meat” Burger. This specific brand produces a meatless burger that is said to be indistinguishable from a real one. We wanted to test that. And hell yeah, it’s true. If you hadn’t told me, you could have made me believe that I had a real hamburger. Sandwich and toppings were also very good. Definitely recommended! Otto’s Burger, address: Lange Reihe 40, 20099 Hamburg. There are two other Otto’s Burger restaurants in Hamburg. In the Netherlands restaurant chain Thrill Grill has the exclusive rights to sell Beyond Meat burgers (Amsterdam, Haarlem and Tilburg).

And then you would say, you don’t have to get out of bed early this weekend because of the kids. No no, these fools had planned to go to the Sunday fish market in St Pauli’s. What are the opening times of this fish market? Eehh, from 5am to 9.30am. We could still use our super bikes, though it was freezing outside. It is clear that at this market, the loudest shouts and funny acts get the most attention. Mini shows are given away to attract visitors to their products.

Lots of fish, but also fruit, candy, sausages, living chickens, plants, clothing and other products. A good option to score a few souvenirs and local products. Anyway, you have to either stay longer in Hamburg and cook for yourself, or drive to Hamburg by car to take everything back with you. We kept it modest haha. Sunday Fish Market, address: Große Elbstraße 27, 22767 Hamburg.

After lunch, it was time to drive back. Re-energized and enjoyed every bit of this great city! Hamburg, we didn’t have time to explore other things, so I can see a new city trip coming.

Are you planning to visit Hamburg anytime soon. Order your copy of the Lonely Planet Hamburg (or any other guide or product) via The Bookdepository, click here. Or if you are a fan of Amazon, click on the book below.

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