am off to hamburg for the weekend on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of september, and am just wondering if anyone knows of any cool/pleasant bars or places to eat in the city? i know the alster fair is on that weekend, so there'll probably be a fair amount to do with that(no pun intended...), but if you can recommend anywhere, that would be cool.
If the weather is decent, there's a fair few places around the lake which are quite cool to eat/drink in. Some are seasonal though, and i don't know how long they are there, but there's always some. There's a couple of really cool places i know in St. Pauli as well, but i have no chance in hell of explaining to anybody how to get to them - i'll try and get somebody to send me instructions to paste up! And to my mind, the Reeperbahn is not worth the time at all. A few of teh side roads off have reasopnable places, but i rtend to avoid the whole area.
Gelli is right with the Reeperbahn, it's very touristy and boring. Though on the Hamburger Berg - Street off Reeperbahn are a few good bars to hang out! Even better with lots of restaurants and cafes/bars is the Sternschanze area (it's a S-Bahn/U-Bahn stop) and if you go their during the day you can also do some alternative shopping there. Taking the harbour ferry from Landungsbrücken to Övelgönne is a must, it's part of the Hamburg public transport, so if you already have a day pass you don't have to pay any extra and get a little journey through the harbour. When you get off at Övelgönne and continue walking for a few minutes this will lead you to the Hamburg beach with a nice, relaxed bar.
Hope this helps and you have great time in Hamburg!