Exploring cultures and communities – the slow way

A new ferry powered by liquefied natural gas will make its first journey from the island of Helgoland to the port of Hamburg this month. It'll be a rare chance to cruise in comfort up the River Elbe to the German port city.

article summary —

The lower portion of the River Elbe, which flows north-west from Hamburg and drains into the North Sea, is one of Europe’s great waterways. Large ships, laden with goods from around the world, still sail up the Elbe to the busy port of Hamburg. It is a magnificent way to arrive in Germany — on a par with sailing past the Pointe de Grave and progressing sedately up the Gironde towards Bordeaux.

The DFDS ferry from Harwich used to run right up the Elbe to the very heart of Hamburg, thus giving passengers, for the last three hours of the journey, a remarkable introduction to the Hamburg region. No longer. The route was axed many years ago. In recent years there have been barely any scheduled passenger ships serving the stretch of the Elbe from its estuary up to Hamburg.

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About the authors

hidden europe

and Susanne Kries manage hidden europe, a Berlin-based editorial bureau that supplies text and images to media across Europe. Together they edit hidden europe magazine. Nicky and Susanne are dedicated slow travellers. They delight in discovering the exotic in the everyday.

This article was published in hidden europe 46.