First Time In Germany – Going In Search of Youth HotSpots

Can you believe I’ve never been to Germany?

Me neither.

I think we drove over the border once when I was a kid but the details are blurry so I don’t think that counts. Throughout my career I have worked for two major German companies (one of which was BMW’s UK HQ) and yet still I did not find the opportunity to visit.

Until now.

The German Tourism Board are sending me on a mission. I am off to sniff out some youth hotspots in 3 German cities and will be sharing the results on this blog as well as the Youth Hotspot microsite. I’m not heading to Berlin, as that would be too easy, but rather am getting to explore the lesser-known locations of Cologne, Hamburg and Muenster.

cologne dom

In preparation I’ve been scouring the internet and delving into the sizeable Lonely Planet guide to Germany. I’ve made a few notes on the sights I want to check out and the areas I think might hold some hotspots, but I would also like to ask for your help. Do you know of any hip cafes, trendy bars, bustling markets or curious shops in these cities that you think I might like? Do let me know in the comment section below.

Here is what I have on my list so far:


The Chocolate Factory (because this travelling chocaholic couldn’t miss it)

Visit to the Cathedral (Kolner Dom) followed by coffee in Antik & Trödel Café (thanks to a tip from Elke from Experience Germany)

Visit to a brewery (of course)


A bike tour (2 wheels are popular here)

The Picasso Museum



If I had time I would love to just do literally EVERYTHING in this post by the Travelettes – 30 Things To Do In Hamburg – and also:

Emigration Museum

Harbour boat tour

Reeperbahn Festival (my visit handily coincides with Germany’s largest club festival being held in the notorious red light district.)

Following in the footsteps on the Beatles – like Kash from the Budget Traveller did here.

Shopping in Karolinenvierte like Andrea from Rear View Mirror did here.


Getting Around

I’ll be navigating my way in-between each city by rail. This will be my first mini interrailing experience – wish me luck!

To follow along on this adventure search for the hashtag #youthhotspotsgermany. As always I’ll be sharing updates live on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as well as uploading my tips to the Germany Youth Hotspots site and updating the blog when I get home. I leave next Monday 23rd September and will be in Germany for a week.

Thanks in advance for all your tips and advice,

J x

Thanks to the German National Tourist Board for inviting me to join this project and  to RailEurope  and Easyjet for supporting it. All words, opinions and navigational errors will be my own.

*Images provided by

About Author

I'm a full time blogger with a passion for travel and interiors. A travel blogger for 12+ years, I took a course on interior styling during the pandemic when travel was not an option. I now run 2 Instagram accounts - @jayneytravels, which covers authentic, affordable luxury escapes and @ourtravelhome which is all about decorating our new build home with a modern rustic style.


  • Kathi
    September 18, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    Have fun in Germany my dear! And enjoy our 30 things to do in Hamburg 😀

    • Jayne
      September 18, 2013 at 12:47 pm

      Thank you – the page is bookmarked for my arrival 🙂

  • Caroline Eubanks
    September 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    I did Cologne and Hamburg last year and had fun! I went to Gaffel brewery in Cologne and loved it.

    In Hamburg I did the free city walking tour (a good fit with youth hot spots!) and a pub crawl in the Reeperbahn.

    • Jayne
      September 18, 2013 at 4:07 pm

      Thanks Caroline, I’ve heard great things about those free walking tours, I’ll try and get on one. Maybe I’ll get to the brewery too…

  • Kirstie
    September 18, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    Have fun!
    I’ve visited Cologne about three times as my old school used to do exchanges nearby, but I’m afraid I don’t have any suggestions for bars and pubs as I was a 15 year old trying to convince the guys at the bar that I really was old enough haha!
    The chocolate factory is loads of fun,you can eat your fill of free chocolate there. The Dom is really magnificent as well.

    • Jayne
      September 18, 2013 at 4:06 pm

      Haha I did laugh out loud at your comment!
      I can’t wait for the chocolate factory now – sounds like I should go on an empty stomach 😉

  • Lucy - The Luxe Life
    September 19, 2013 at 2:18 pm

    I have never been to Germany either! A huge crime considering my surname and family history began there! Cant wait to read your posts and start planning my trip!

  • A Montrealer Abroad (@amontrealer)
    September 20, 2013 at 12:46 am

    Cologne has a surprising design district just north of Neumarkt! Lots of cool, locally designed and handmade clothes.

  • Angela
    September 20, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    Cologne is my favorite German city! It has a cool vibe like Berlin but it’s not so big and hyped up. I really liked the Cologne beers and there is this one really big vintage shop where I got lost for hours! Enjoy!

  • Adam
    September 24, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Be sure to check out the nightlife in Hamburg – it’s a fun city! And don’t worry – there’s more than just the Reeperbahn…

  • […] First Time In Germany – Going In Search of Youth HotSpots September 18, 2013 […]


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