Hamburg red light district

Categories: Sightseeing, Cultural and History, Entertainment, General Travel Info

Reeperbahn, Hamburg
Reeperbahn, Hamburg

The famous Reeperbahn in Hamburg (Hamburg vacation rentals | Hamburg travel guide) is one of the most famous red light districts in Europe. Besides brothels and sex shops visitors will find some nice bars, restaurants, clubs and theatres in the quarter of St. Pauli that is also known as one of the nightlife hubs in Hamburg.

Before the quarter of St. Pauli was integrated into Hamburg it was known as “Hamburger Berg” a clear field of fire outside the city. With the quarter’s incorporation, rope makers used the empty fields as rope walks to dry their ropes that were later braided into ship ropes. They gave the main street the nickname “Reeperbahn” a term in low German, which means nothing else than rope walk.

With a growing population the area of St. Pauli developed into a red light district with theaters, ballrooms, vaudeville shows, bars and brothels at the end of the 17th century. Moreover, its closeness to Hamburg harbor brought many different cultures in the area and Spaniards, Portuguese and Chinese settled in St. Pauli.

By today Reeperbahn better known as “Kiez” and its side streets is a tourist magnet with famous attractions like “Große Freiheit”, a row full of nightclubs, bars and strip clubs. Until 1969 the famous Star-Club was located in this row at house no. 39. Today only a memorial in the backyard reminds of the first Beatles gigs in the club. Another famous attraction in the red light district is “Herbertstraße” a man-only hooker alley where prostitutes are displayed in windows. The man-only sign should be taken serious, otherwise women might get a nasty surprise walking the alley.

Close by you have “Davidwache”, the area’s police station at “Spielbudenplatz”, that is often used as shooting location for TV shows and movies. The area around Spielbudenplatz is packed with theaters like St. Pauli Theater, the oldest private owned theater in Hamburg. It opened its doors in 1841 and is one of the preserved landmarks in the city. Almost next-door follows Schmidt’s Tivoli and Schmidt Theater, two other privately owned theatres in the city. Last but not least there is the Operettenhaus, one of the many musical theatres in Hamburg.

Most long-established bars and pubs are located at Hans-Albers-Platz and along Friedrichstraße and Silbersackstraße south of Reeperbahn and along Hamburger Berg north of Reeperbahn.

Besides the nightlife activities in the Hamburg red light district, the area is the venue for annual music events such as the Schlagermove in July and the three day Reeperbahn Festival in September.

About this Article

This travel guide has been written by Patricia Eggers.

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Location: Spielbudenplatz 31, Hamburg, Germany

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Hamburg music festival at Reeperbahn

Hamburg Schlagermove

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