15+ TOP Things to Do in Hamburg with Kids + 2024 City Break Guide

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If you think city getaways are not exciting for children, think again. Exploring Hamburg with kids is an amazingly fantastic family travel experience. From the fetching chocolate museum to the world’s largest miniature railway, this German city is chockful of fun activities for kids and kids at heart.

So, if you want to know what to do in Hamburg, Germany with kids? This Hamburg city guide will help you plan a memorable urban getaway.  

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Don’t forget to plan ahead when visiting Hamburg:

🛫 Book cheap flights with WayAway

Get up to 10% cashback on flights with WayAway Plus! Use the code EuropeanCitieswithKids2023 for 10% off a plus membership.

🛏️ Find the perfect place to stay with Booking.com, or discover your perfect holiday home 🏨 with VRBO

Our Top recommendations:

  1. Eric Vökel Boutique Apartments
  2. Madison Hotel Hamburg
  3.  B&B Hotel Hamburg

🚗 Find the best car rental deals with Discover Cars

🎫 Book amazing tours and tickets with Get Your Guide

We Recommend:

Is Hamburg Good for Kids?

Teeming with child-friendly spots, Hamburg is perfect for kids of all ages. Whether your children are interested in animals, intrigued by old ship models, or fascinated by spooky dungeons, they will never run out of fun things to do and places to see in Hamburg. 

One of the reasons Hamburg is a favourite family holiday destination is that it offers exciting activities all year round. Visit in summer and enjoy a picnic on the sand at Elbstrand, or drop by in winter and explore one of the liveliest German Christmas markets in the country.

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Hamburg at Christmas

Is Hamburg Good for a City Break?

Hamburg, located on River Elbe, is Germany’s second-largest city and one of Europe’s busiest ports.

Thoroughly chic and captivating, it boasts fancy shopping arcades, well-curated museums, hip restaurants, a thriving cultural life, and hundreds of scenic canals.

Yet despite the buzz, it retains its old-world charm with its elegant architecture, gorgeous gardens, and historical landmarks.

Want to know more about Germany? What better way to learn about the country than by exploring its other cities? Check out what to do on a city break in Munich with kids or holidays in Berlin with children.

The 10 BEST Things to do in Hamburg with Kids

Whether you want a place to relax or somewhere to enjoy thrilling adventures, you will find whatever you’re looking for in Hamburg.

It is a fabulous destination for those planning a city break where the whole family will have fun. Whether you have one day in Hamburg or ten days, here is our list of what to do in Hamburg with kids.

Aerial Photography of City Skyline

Create Your Own Chocolate Bar at Chocoversum 

You don’t have to be a chocoholic to enjoy a visit to Chocoversum, Hamburg’s celebrated chocolate museum. Spend 90 minutes indulgently sampling, nibbling, and snacking on decadent sweets while learning about chocolate making, from cultivation to final production. 

The best thing about the tour is that you can create your own chocolate bar to brag about and bring home!

The museum is open daily from 10 am to 6 pm. Be sure to secure a time slot without the waiting time by booking a ticket for the Chocoversum online.

Visit the Hamburg Dungeon

Not for the faint of heart, the frighteningly intriguing Hamburg Dungeon allows you to step into the darkest moments of the city’s history over the last 600 years. You can watch artists reliving moments from the Black Plague, the Inquisition, and the Great Fire of 1842. The tour lasts an hour and takes you around 360 sets with state-of-the-art special effects, interactive shows, riveting storytelling, and two hair-raising underground rides.

Please note that the Hamburg Dungeon is not for children under ten years. English tours are available on Saturdays and Sundays starting at 10 am. Tickets are currently available through advanced booking.

Explore the International Maritime Museum

Housed in a warehouse in Speicherstadt, the Internationales Maritimes Museum Hamburg boasts nine levels of artefacts from the collection of Peter Tamm, a German maritime collector and journalist. It has over 38,000 miniature ships, 100,000 books, various construction plans, countless nautical instruments, maps, uniforms, oil paintings, and over one million photographs.

Want to test your navigational skills? Get on the ship simulator and steer a 300-metre-long container vessel through the ports of Rotterdam or Singapore.

The Maritime Museum is open daily from 10 am to 6 pm. Due to its popularity, tickets are likely to sell out. We recommend you book your tickets in advance.

See the City by Hop on Hop off Bus

Did you know that Hamburg is dubbed the Venice of the North but has six times more bridges than the famous Italian city? In fact, Hamburg has 2,496 bridges, more than any other city in Europe. And you can conveniently explore all these and more on a hop on and hop off bus tour.

Sightseeing on a double-decker bus is one of the top things to do in Hamburg. You can wander around the city and see as many attractions and landmarks as you want without worrying about tiring your kids. The bus tour has an optional audio guide in English, French, Spanish, Italian, and Russian.

Visit Miniatur Wunderland

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Model planes

No trip to Hamburg is complete without dropping by the Miniatur Wunderland. Once voted the most popular attraction in Germany, it is the world’s largest model railway system featuring over 16,000 metres of train track divided into nine sections, including Hamburg, Austria, Italy, France, Scandinavia, North America, the Harz mountains, and the Alps.

It also has a replica of the Hamburg Airport and a fictitious town called Knuffingen.

Construction of the railway model began on December 2000, with Austria and Central Germany. There were several expansions over the years, with planned additional sections for the Netherlands, England, Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean.

The exhibit has 1,300 trains, 500,000 LED lights, 130,000 trees, 100,000 vehicles, and 400,000 human figurines.

Pet Animals at Tierpark Hagenbeck

Exploring the sprawling Tierpark Hagenbeck is one of the best Hamburg children’s activities, especially if your little one loves animals. Founded in 1907, it is the first zoo to use enclosures bordered by moats instead of barred cages. You can observe over 210 animal species from various parts of the world, including the endangered Asian elephant and Siberian tiger.  

One of the most popular spots in the zoo is the four-level Tropical Aquarium which houses over 14,000 animals, including Nile crocodiles and thousands of fish. The Eismeer exhibit features arctic creatures such as walruses, penguins, and polar bears. 

If you wish to get close to the animals, you can try the pony ride, participate in the feedings, or get onboard the mini train that goes around the zoo.

Splash Around at Festland Bäderland

This public swimming club offers the best of both worlds – an aqua adventure playground for kids and a wellness facility for grownups. Within the waterpark is Dinoland, a 900-square-metre space that features massive dinosaur models, wading pools, artificial caves, and water slides. 

Festland is the perfect place for parents to unwind while their kids play nearby. You can soak in the spa pool, relax in the sauna, or pamper yourself with a massage.

Tour the Submarine Museum

Docked permanently in front of the fish market along the city’s harbour, the U-434 is a Soviet submarine from the 1970s once used for patrol, espionage, and hunting. Also known as the U-Boot Museum, the boat is still fully functional, though its days of stealthy missions are clearly over. 

Squeeze through the airlock doors, walk down its narrow hallway, and enter the engine and torpedo rooms. If you don’t mind shelling out a few extra euros, you can go on a private guided tour to learn more about the submarine’s history and see its bridge.

Discover Rare Fauna at Planten un Blomen

Hamburg may not have the best theme parks in Germany, but it has some of the best green spaces in the country. One of these is the 47-hectare Planten un Blomen, a scenic and serene botanical garden in the middle of the bustling city. The park features several gardens with various plants from the tropics, subtropics, and other parts of the world.

From May to September, the park hosts a 30-minute water-light show every night. It also has a roller-skating rink which converts into an ice arena in winter, plenty of playgrounds, and a lovely Japanese garden, known for being the largest in Europe. Admission to the park is free.

Climb Up the Elbphilharmonie

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The Elbphilharmonie, Hamburg’s famous concert hall, is one of the most recognizable architectures in the city. Here, you can ride the world’s longest curved escalator, which spans more than 80 meters from the ground floor to an observation deck on the 8th floor. You can soak up the splendid city and harbour views on the viewing platform.

Exploring the Elbphilharmonie is not only among the best indoor activities in Hamburg with children but also a very educational one.

More of the Top things to do in Hamburg

What is the Best Part of Hamburg to Stay in?

The city centre, consisting of Altstadt (Old Town) and Neustadt (New Town), is one of the most popular parts for tourists to stay in because of its proximity to attractions and amenities. It is also a favourite among families with children.

For the ultimate urban experience, check out Hafencity, a modern and trendy neighbourhood in Hamburg. The area is home to the historic warehouse district of Speicherstadt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more budget-friendly neighbourhood to stay in, head to Altona-Altstadt (not to be confused with Altstadt in the city centre), a district along the Elbe River.

Best Places to Stay When Visiting Hamburg with Kids

Located in the city centre, the Eric Vökel Boutique Apartments offers superb and spacious family rooms with a fully equipped kitchen, cosy living room and private bathroom. 

If you’re looking for a child-friendly hotel with a great location, check out the Madison Hotel Hamburg in the vibrant district of Neustadt.

For a budget-friendly hotel, B&B Hotel Hamburg in Altona offers modern and comfortable accommodations at affordable rates. It is a 20-minute ride from the city centre and harbour.

More Top-Rated Options

Best Day Trips from Hamburg with Kids

Hamburg may be the highlight of your trip, but if you’re craving some fresh air away from the bustling metropolis, don’t hesitate to take the next train out of town. There are plenty of delightful places to see outside Hamburg with children, and here are our top picks.

Wildpark Schwarze Berge

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Located in the medieval town of Lüneburg, about 30 minutes from the Hamburg city centre, the Wildpark Schwarze Berge is the perfect family-friendly escape.

You can get close to adorable animals at the petting zoo, feed otters, badgers and raccoons, or watch the daily air show featuring birds. Kids over the age of six can join the thrilling night hike.

The park also has a massive playground and a restaurant where adults can unwind and sample tasty treats. Campervans and caravans are available at its camping site from April to October.

Elbstrand Beach

Elbstrand is technically not a beach in the strict sense of the word, but it does have the air of one. This 200-metre stretch of sand along River Elbe is a fabulous spot for sunbathing, sand castle building, serene sunset strolls, and even swimming when the weather permits.

During weekends, Elbstrand can get particularly busy with families picnicking or barbequing on the sand, playing beach games, or merely lounging around.

One of the best ways to get to Elbstrand is on a boat ride from Landungsbrücken to Oevelgönne. You’ll see stunning sights along the harbour, including lovely houses dotting the shore. If you have a Hamburg Card, it covers your ferry ride.

Hamburg City Break FAQs

Is 2 days in Hamburg enough?

There is a lot to see in Hamburg with kids. Two days is enough to see most of the highlights within the popular neighbourhoods, but if you want to explore all the attractions scattered throughout the city at a relaxed pace, you would need more than a couple of days. Still, with a well-planned itinerary, you can do plenty of fun things in Hamburg.

How many days in Hamburg is enough?

Three days should give you sufficient time to enjoy Hamburg without feeling rushed. However, if you have an extra day to spare, make your stay a bit longer, especially if you plan to go on day trips outside the city.

Where can I take my kids in Hamburg?

Hamburg has heaps of child-friendly attractions that your kids will no doubt love. These include the world-famous city Miniatur Wunderland, Tierpark Hagenbeck, Festland, Planten un Blomen, and the Chocoversum. If your child is ten years or older, you can book a ticket for the spooky Hamburg Dungeon.

What is there to do in Hamburg in February

February is a great time to visit the city. You can escape heavy crowds and higher rates. But the weather may still be chilly, so it’s best to go for the many indoor activities in Hamburg. Check out the kid-friendly attractions, such as the Maritime Museum, the Chocolate Museum and the Miniatur Wunderland

.If you want outdoor fun, head to Planten un Blomen, which looks surreal in winter with its snow-covered trees and sparkling ice-skating rink. Tierpark Hagenbeck is open year-round but closes around 4:30 pm in winter due to early darkness. Still, you can spend hours at the zoo enjoying its exhibits.

Plan Your Trip to Hamburg with Kids

🛫 Book cheap flights with WayAway

Get up to 10% cashback on flights with WayAway Plus! Use the code EuropeanCitieswithKids2023 for 10% off a plus membership.

🛏️ Find the perfect place to stay with Booking.com,

…or discover your perfect holiday home 🏨 with VRBO

🚗 Find the best car rental deals with Discover Cars

🎫 Book amazing tours and tickets with Get Your Guide

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Sylvie Simpson is the founder of European Cities with Kids. For the past 6 years, she has been travelling all over Europe whenever she has the chance, both solo, for work and with her daughter. Sylvie is on a mission to help people make the most of city breaks in Europe with kids and helps over 50,000 readers per month plan and make the most of their trips in Europe with kids.