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Photo: Daniel Sessler / Unsplash

Places

A sustainable guide to Hamburg

Germany’s major cities have long carried an environmental torch, and many offer innovative ways to look after the planet. Here are a few good ideas in Hamburg.

Photo: Carl Undehn

In guter Gesellschaft

We all love a cozy café, with long tables, comfortable armchairs and bookshelves full of inspiring literature. And that’s just what you’ll find at “In guter Gesellschaft,” (In good company), which is also Germany’s first zero-waste café. In other words, no litter is produced and nothing is wasted. Come and sip a tasty drink through a straw made of aluminum instead of plastic, and clean your hands with reusable napkins made of cloth, not paper, after a delicious chocolate cake.

In guter Gesellschaft

Sternstrasse 25, Hamburg

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Photo: Carl Undehn

Hobenköök

Just next to the new neighborhood of Hafen City lies the most recent addition to Hamburg’s many food markets. A former freight yard has been transformed into a 600 square meter paradise called “Hobenköök,” meaning “Harbor kitchen.” The hall is full of everything from apples to schnapps from 200 regional producers, and if you can’t wait to enjoy the fresh ingredients until you get home, there’s also a restaurant serving seasonal slow-food in the middle of the hall. To reduce waste, the restaurant also uses as much as possible from the market stalls, including, for example discarded vegetable peel to cook soup with.

Hobenköök

Stockmeyerstrasse 43, Hamburg

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Photo: Carl Undehn

Werte Freunde

Wellbeing on all levels is the idea behind the concept store “Werte Freunde.” Half the store is filled with a wide range of garments, the other with beauty products. And whether you pick up a new stylish sweater or need to replenish your body lotion supply, you can be sure that it’s all ecologically and fairly produced.According to founder Janine Werth, skin care and clothing are different sides of the same coin - it’s all about our “second skin,” which needs to be treated properly.In the back, you’ll also find skin care treatments and every second week there is an environmentally themed event.

Werte Freunde

Großer Burstah 42, Hamburg

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Gut Wulksfelde

Less than half an hour north of Hamburg lies Gut Wulksfelde, a pioneer in ecological farming. For many years Hamburgers have been able to order their “Biokiste,” a box with fresh ecological products delivered once a week to their doors. With animals such as cows, pigs and hens, a cozy café with a bakery and a shop offering a wide range of local and ecological products, Gut Wulksfelde is a popular weekend destination for all ages.

Gut Wulksfelde

Wulksfelder Damm 15-17, Tangstedt

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Photo: Carl Undehn

Kehr.Wieder och Recup

A coffee in the morning on the way to work is a must-have for many of us. But as a study showed that more than 60 million paper mugs are used each year in Hamburg alone, the city decided to make a change. As part of the “Kehr.Wieder” (Come.Back) initiative, 300 cafés offer discounts to their all customers who bring their own cup, preferably from “Recup”, a deposit system for re-usable coffee cups for one Euro that are sold and that you can give back in all participating cafés.

Kehr.Wieder och Recup

Photo: Carl Undehn

Wälderhaus

Even though it’s hard to sleep in the woods while visiting a city like Hamburg, the hotel “Wälderhaus” is at least as close as it gets. The name, meaning “Forest House,” says it all. The façade of untreated larch wood and the roof with thousands of bushes and hundreds of trees bring a slice of nature and animal life to the city.The hotel offers rooms with a cabin feeling as the forest-concept continues with wooden panels on the walls and furniture made from natural materials as well as an exhibition about life in the forest.Solar-panels and geothermal heating guarantees a low carbon footprint for the guest while they are enjoying a good night sleep “in the woods.”

Wälderhaus

Am Inselpark 19, Hamburg

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