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ECHT Journey to Hamburg. Enjoy the old harbor, Germany´s oldest opera tradition and its youngest concert hall

Journey for the curious mind. See Europe differently, accompanied by local specialists. Experience destinations that tell a story. Understand more about European destinations with history-, cultural- and architectural background information informal during the trip, or -if desired- during lectures in our lounge to prepare for the trip in advance. You will travel with like-minded travelers and subject matter specialists, we pick business or first class flights and privately owned boutique hotels or luxury hotel offerings in historic buildings.

Establishing in the late 1100s one of the early hubs of the commercial and defensive confederation, the powerful Hanseatic League - the Hanse, the citizens of Hamburg and its merchant guilds always fought successfully to keep their wealth and independence from the European powers. And from these times till today many interesting aspects show that.

We organize a private tour in one of Europe´s richest town halls, a neo-renaissance gem that was the center of the independent government; and still is - as Hamburg is an independent state of Germany.

While Germany´s largest port and gateway to the world, the rather unpretentious citizens of Hamburg never really advertised tourism and, up to the recent opening of the Elb-phlharmonie hall, downtown was somehow under the radar. So, lets discover the canals of the old city harbor with its beautiful old tea and coffee warehouses, the Speicherstadt, that are accessible only via boat. This area, together with the Kontorhausviertel and its early 20th-century ornate brick expressionism architecture (check out the Chile-haus) have been recently added to the UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Enjoy the cultural institutions that the citizens of Hamburg established: in 1678, the Senate of Hamburg vote to build a public opera house. This was not uncontroversial: the Lutherans were for the idea; but the Pietists regarded it as too much of a place of worldly pleasures. Nevertheless, the “Opern-theatrum” developed into one of the leading centers of music in Europe. Telemann and Händel were early performers. Upon request we can also arrange for a visit of the St Michael Church, the Michel, one of the most impressive organs in northern Europe; depending on the timing with an organ concert.

A concert in the Elbphilharmonie concert hall is also an architectural delight - with its impressive glass facade and wave-like rooftop it rises up from a former warehouse building on the western tip of the harbor. Opened in 2016, the architects Jacques Herzog & Pierre de Meuron took inspiration from three structures: the ancient theater at Delphi, sport stadiums and tents.

Hamburg is entertaining awarded restaurants but also century old dives offering local food - pick from our curated restaurant selection. And then discover the entertaining area around the Reeperbahn, that traditionally is an eclectic mix of suit-and-tie visitors at the many musical theaters, Germany´s most notorical red-light clubs and dive bars.

We recommend a 3 day trip to Hamburg. Hamburg to Berlin is a 90 min ride when using the European ultra fast trains - if desired we can start and end the journey in Berlin. The two train stations exhibit old-fashioned and new European architecture and are an experience in itself. Starting in Berlin, we can combine with more exiting excursions in Berlin as well.

If you want to use Hamburg as a station to visit other European cities - let us know.

This will be a journey designed considering a group of 6-12 people, and we will include destinations according to your preferences. The time of the trip will be defined on request, pricing depends on your selection and flight distances. Our rate for management, local organization including guided tours and special tips and contacts is $250/day per person.

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Dietmar Rabich, CC BY-SA 4.0
Axel Hindemith, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

107 Penn Ave

221 Brownsville Rd

Pittsburgh PA 15210 USA

Phone: 412 – 4786816


Bus 48, 51, 44 to Downtown, 54 to Oakland