- Lower Saxony
- North Rhine Westphalia
- Frisian Islands
- Harz Mountains
Being home to more than 1.8 million inhabitants, Hamburg is the second-largest city in Germany (second to Berlin). The city of Hamburg is, by own right, one of the Bundesländer or federal states in itself. The "Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg" is famous for its harbor, which is the third-largest harbor in Europe. Being a port city, Hamburg is a prominent trade center - the country's most important in fact - and the second most important in Europe. Due to its highly developed infrastructure, Hamburg is not only a major transportation hub but also a media and industrial center. The city is also an important tourist destination both for domestic and overseas visitors, receiving several million visitors every year.
An industrial, modern city, Hamburg has always been defined by its open-mindedness and tolerance. A devastating fire in 1842 and the Allies bombing campaign during World War II considerably reduced the number of the city's sites. However, it is worthwhile visiting St. Michael's Cathedral, with its 132 meter spire and excellent panoramic views of the city, the old Post Office, now an elegant mall; the Town Hall and the Chile-Haus (Chile House), a red brick construction built in the expressionist style.
However, Hamburg's real charm lies in the harbor with the Clock Tower, St Pauli Landungsbrücken's green dome, the old warehouses and HafenCity. The planning and construction of this new district in central Hamburg, which included the transformation of old harbourquarters to offices, hotels, shops, official buildings and residential areas, is one of the largest rebuilding projects in Europe in the 21st century.