Saturday, June 21, 2014

[HAMBURG] A Weekend With the Hamburgers

I am not sure if they really do refer to themselves as Hamburgers, but it’s cute anyway so I insist. My trip to Europe was supposed to be predominantly German, but in the end I decided to include Spain and Portugal in the itinerary, which meant less days for Deutschland. In the end, what should have been three weeks were condensed to one and a half, and all that was left for Hamburg was a weekend.

What I really do admire about Germany is the abundance of choices when it comes to cheap travel options. Before I came here I thought that everything was possible because of the trains, but I found out how surprisingly expensive they are when I tried booking for travel options. As such, let me share with you my best discovery for Germany:!

Yes, that website is useful, but I forgot that I actually used a different service for my trip from Berlin to Hamburg. It was supposed to be a carpooling thing too, but I think I was the only passenger for that time slot so they brought me to the bus terminal instead and we waited there for around half an hour, with the strong and cold wind and all that. Long story short, the trip took 16 Euros and 3 1/2 hours.

The good thing was that my hostel is just across both the bus terminal and the Hauptbahnof, but even with just one street to cross, the combination of strong winds and cold drizzle was just too sickening so I decided to rest a bit under the thick blankets of my bunk bed after checking in. It was almost 8 PM when my Hamburger friends met me at the police station across the street.

I am lucky that a friend from my gang in Xiamen was in her hometown when I decided to visit. What better way to get to know Hamburg than have a real Hamburger to show you around. But there was no sightseeing that night. We opted to relax and play some group games at their flat instead, which gave me a good glimpse of how the locals live their daily lives in this city.

The MRT trip from Hauptbahnof to Veddel took just ten minutes. I think it actually took longer than that walking to my friend’s apartment. The wind was really chilling me to death, which they probably noticed so they decided to lend me a sweater and a cardigan to battle the cold. In any case, it is just so relieving to see a familiar face in a foreign city, despite being used to always traveling alone.

The night ended quite late, and surprisingly the MRT was still operational even if it was almost 1 AM. The next day started late after lunch, the whole afternoon spent on a walking tour of the city center, with matching historical background care of Hamburger friend. All in all, I spent just a day in Hamburg; a day and two nights.

Unfortunately, my aversion to the cold weather was still quite overwhelming, which led me to not enjoy Hamburg that much, which is truly unfortunate because the city has tons of history to back it up, what with it being a member of the Hanseatic League and all that. I guess Germany really took the brunt of my adjustment-to-Europe period. Regardless, my eyes adored Hamburg, and the multitude of photos taken would not dare disagree!
[HAMBURG] A Weekend With the Hamburgers

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