5 churches to visit in Hamburg
Hamburg is one of the most beautiful cities in Germany and has many church spires gracing its cityscape. If you are here for a cultural break, interested to learn more about the enlightening history of the city, admire some of the incredible and historic architecture dating back to the 11th century, check out our top five churches to visit in Hamburg:
St Michael’s Church
Arguably the most famous church in Hamburg, St Michael’s Church is dedicated to the archangel Michael. One of the most striking features of the church is the huge bronze statue of St Michael vanquishing the Devil above the door. The tower with its distinctive copper dome is visible across the city and is 132m high with a viewing platform at 82m. St Michael’s is also the largest church in Hamburg with seating for around 2,500 people and is open daily for visits. Check out the crypt where Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, the celebrated composer, is buried.
St Peter’s Church
The site of St Peter’s Church in Hamburg is believed to be in the original Hammaberg area which is only about a 10 minutes walk away from Generator Hostel Hamburg and there have been many churches built there. The earliest is thought to be around 12th century which makes St Peter’s the oldest parish church in Hamburg. The bronze lion-head door handles are the oldest work of art of Hamburg and date from the foundation of the tower in 1342. If you want an insight into the history of St Peter’s then take the tour, they happen every Thursday at 3pm and every first Sunday at 11.30am; tours are free and last about an hour.
St James’ Church
St James’ Church in Hamburg is nicknamed by the locals as St Jacobi and dates back to the 13th Century; its main purpose was a stopping place for pilgrims. The famous Arp Schnitger organ of 1693 in the west gallery is, with its 60 registers and around 4,000 pipes, is the largest baroque organ in northern Europe. It can be heard every Sunday during services and at regular concerts held in the church. Why not grab a snack at an unusual location? Visit the Tower Cafe which is open on the first Saturday of the month from May until October and have a coffee and a cake at 85m above the city.
St Thomas Becket Church
This relatively modern church is located in the centre of Hamburg between the St Michaelis Church and the Reeperbahn on Zeughausmarkt and is an English speaking Anglican Church. The present church was built in 1838 is the neo-classical style in white stone and is dedicated to St Thomas Becket an archbishop in England in the 12th century who was famously murdered by King Henry II. The church has services every Sunday and they will be holding special Easter services in April.
St Nicholas’ Church
This classic Gothic revival style church is among the oldest in Hamburg and, unfortunately, due to heavy bombing during World War II the spire is all that remains. St Nicholas’s Church now serves as a memorial and an important architectural landmark due to its fame as being the tallest building in the world from 1874 to 1876; it is still the second tallest building in Hamburg. There has been a new church of St Nicholas built since in the district of Harvestehude which is near the north end of the Alster Lake where the regular services are held.
Check out other events in Hamburg to see what is going on either around the city or in our hostel this month.