The historic train station in the heart of the Hanseatic city is one of the most important transport hubs in Northern Europe. Long-distance trains depart from here in the direction of Scandinavia and the Czech Republic. Furthermore, it is the central hub for train traffic in the direction of Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein.
Every day, more than 550,000 passengers use Hamburg Central Station to reach their destinations. This puts HBF-Hamburg ahead of Berlin’s main station, which sees an average of “only” 330,000 passengers a day.
Here you will find a compact overview of essential services and offers in the area of Hamburg Central Station.
Wandelhalle: Gastronomic offer & shopping experience
The historic station hall is divided into two parts. On the south side, the focus is on direct access to the total of 14 tracks. Here, there is only a rudimentary culinary offering: kiosks, small bakeries and newsagents dominate the picture.
On the north side, the Wandelhalle provides an extensive selection of food and beverages. These include Schweinske, KFC, Dunkin Donuts, Gosch Sylt, Manju, Subway, asiahung and many more.
In the lower part, the majority of the food providers are centralized in the Gourmet Station.
For those who prefer a proper restaurant for a longer stay, the Schweinske on the 1st floor is recommended.
There are numerous seats here and an extensive menu is available. Alternatively, there are numerous other restaurants at the exit in the direction of Kirchenallee.
For friends of German cuisine, the Paulaner Wirtshaus and Nagel – Restaurant und Bierstube should be highlighted here.
International and especially oriental options can be found in the St. Georg district, just a few minutes’ walk away.
In addition to the numerous dining options, there are also several stores in the Wandelhalle that are also open on Sundays.
Among them are the jewelry store Bijou Brigitte, shoe retailer Görtz, perfumery Douglas, a hair salon, drugstore Rossmann, The Body Shop and many more.
EDEKA on the 1st floor is suitable for spontaneous grocery shopping.
DB Lounge: Wi-Fi, free drinks and snacks
The entrance to the DB Lounge in Hamburg is quite hidden. It is located directly at the exit to Kirchenallee on the right-hand side.
Only rail customers with DB Comfort status are allowed to enter. As well as holders of a ticket for the 1st class at the flex price. Sparpreise are unfortunately excluded from access.
In the DB Lounge you will find the following amenities:
- Cold beverages (Cola, Sprite, water etc.)
- Coffee and tea
- Workstations and sockets
- Small snacks
Guests in 1st class also benefit from more space, a brighter atmosphere and a more pleasant view.
Instead of looking into the station avenue, the large window allows a view of the station forecourt dominated by old buildings.
Furthermore, a larger selection of beverages, including alcoholic beverages (beer, wine and sparkling wine), is available in the 1st class area. Service is kindly provided at the seat.
The opening hours of the DB Lounge in Hamburg are:
- Monday-Friday: 6 am – 10 pm
- Samstag, Sonntag: 7 am – 08.30 pm
Lockers: north and south side
Travelers who wish to store their luggage temporarily can use the lockers located directly to the right of the entrance on the Hamburg-Süd side.
Additional lockers are located on the stairway to track 5/6 and on track 13/14
Short-term lockers for backpacks cost 2€ for 6 hours. For larger lockers, in which suitcases can be easily stowed, a short-term rental fee of 4€ applies.
The daily rent is 4€ or 6€. The maximum rental period is 72 hours.
Unfortunately, areas near the lockers are often very dirty. It is not uncommon for the location to be used for drug use or begging.
Therefore, a conscientious look into the locker should be made before use.
Alternatives to lockers at the station
Therefore, if you prefer to use the DB Baggage Center, you can drop off your luggage here for €5.00/day and don’t have to worry about the exact dimensions.
Because the billing is based on the number of luggage.
The luggage service is located on the south side directly at the entrance to the Wandelhalle. Opening hours are daily from 8 am to 8 pm. No pickup is available outside of business hours.
Another alternative is the start-up Nannybag. Here, a location can be flexibly sought in the city, such as a hotel or a business branch, in order to deposit the piece of luggage there.
Currently, the company charges a flat rate of €6 per day. This includes insurance of up to €1,000 in the event of loss.
Direct connections to Northern Europe and many major cities
Hamburg Central Station is one of the most important transport hubs in Northern Europe. There is a direct connection from Hamburg to Copenhagen several times a day.
For the journey, the Danish EuroCity (EC) takes 4:40 hours via Padborg, Kolding and Odense. From Denmark, Malmö, Gothenburg, Stockholm and Oslo are easily reached by train.
The Czech EuroCity (EC) also takes passengers several times a day from Hamburg via Dresden and Berlin to Prague in 6:15 hours without changing trains.
Von Hamburg nach Berlin im Stundentakt
If you don’t want to use the nostalgic, but also slower EC to get to Berlin, you can use the hourly ICE connections from Hamburg to Berlin. The journey to the capital takes just 1:45 hours.
The financial metropolis of Frankfurt can be reached in 3:30 hours from Hamburg main station.
Conveniently, the Schleswig-Holstein state ticket is valid for Hamburg. For a daily price of 28€ plus 3€ for further fellow travelers, numerous destinations directly at the sea can be approached.
No matter whether you prefer the Baltic Sea or the North Sea island of Sylt.
Rent a car, lost & found and luggage service
If a rental car is required for the onward journey in Hamburg, Sixt and Europcar customers can pick it up at the counter. This is located at the entrance to the foyer.
The lost and found office is also located here, which is useful if objects are left on the train or in the station. Just like the DB luggage service and IC courier service.
Travel center and tickets
The DB Navigator app is recommended for anyone who regularly travels by train.
With this, buying a ticket is absolutely easy, the BahnCard can be stored digitally and you automatically receive information about the personal connection.
The travel center, which is also located at the entrance to the foyer, offers the opportunity to purchase and exchange tickets or to inquire about services directly on site.
However, it should be noted that waiting times can be extremely long.
Especially at the weekend. The opening times are daily from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. The ticket machines are right next to the travel center.
Additionally at the entrances as well as at the entrances to the platform. Important: It is not possible to buy a ticket on the train.
Local public transport, taxis and mobility
The Hamburger Verkehrsbetriebe (HVV) sales point is right next to the travel center. Tickets for local public transport are available there. The corresponding machines are located at the entrances to the U-Bahn and S-Bahn. If you travel regularly, we recommend downloading the HVV app.
A single trip for a short distance costs €1.70. The day ticket is available from €6.60 (as of October 2020).
The taxi stand is located at the front exit in the direction of Kirchenallee.
And at the rear exit in the direction of Steintorwall. As a rule, taxis can be found here at any time of the day or night.
As an alternative to rental cars, taxis and local public transport, there are different mobility providers in Hamburg.
Ridesharing as a cheap alternative to taxis
When the weather is bad, the ridesharing service MOIA is an inexpensive alternative.
This start-up, which belongs to the VW Group, gives several customers the opportunity to share a taxi.
Instead of an exact address, the driver takes the guest to a street corner, usually in the immediate vicinity of the desired destination.
The open-plan cars are electric, modern and extremely comfortable.
My personal favorite is the app from the provider Free Now.
With this you can order taxis, use vehicles from the car-sharing provider Miles and rent scooters and e-bikes.
Tips for longer stays: going out & eating
If the personal stay lasts a little longer, there are numerous opportunities for pastime in the immediate vicinity.
Charming cocktail bars, small restaurants and individual shops characterize the townscape of St. Georg in the long row.
From lunch to an opulent dinner followed by drinks, this area offers a variety of options for all intentions.
Since this area is part of the city’s gay district, things are pleasantly flashy, tolerant and creative here.
One of the best restaurants is Neumann’s Bistro & Weinbar. Super cocktails are served at Kyti Voo and Cube.
The Steindamm is also culinary varied. Above all, oriental restaurants and greengrocers characterize the streetscape here.
Sicherheit: Spätabends besser aufmerksam sein
Especially in the evening it is better to avoid the area around the side entrance at Hauptbahnhof Süd, Steindamm and the back part of the ZOB. This is where the open drug scene is.
Fights, knife attacks, robberies and other acts of violence are not uncommon in these areas.
Tourists in particular are disproportionately often the victims of pickpocketing and scams.
Overall, the security situation is good. If something does happen, the police station is located directly at the main station south.
In addition, a security team from Deutsche Bahn patrols around the station.
Art & culture in the immediate vicinity
Those who prefer artistic input to culinary experiences have plenty of choice near the train station.
The Hamburger Kunsthalle is located directly at the north exit. Art exhibitions from the fields of painting, photography and prints alternate here.
Theater lovers only need to walk 1 minute from the foyer and can choose between the Ohnsorg Theater and the Deutsches Schauspielhaus.