The Alster river in Hamburg was dammed into creating the Outer and Inner Alster lakes. Until the 1970s and 1980s, these two artificial lakes were used for transit of goods and persons. Now, the museum line (Museumslinie) is operated as a round-trip tour option for individuals who want to get to know the urban waterfront up close.
In spite of their age, the boats are rather swift. Many of them were built in the late 1940s, before the establishment of the Federal Republic of Germany. They are still going strong.
Incidentally, the distinction between a boat and a ship is based on whether the vessel is capable of ocean travel. As apparent from the picture above, another possible distinction would be whether the vessel is capable of fitting under low-clearance bridges.
The bridge has incredible historical ambience. However, the captain (rightly) seems more concerned with avoiding hapless kayackers and paddle boat renters.
We enjoyed this ride on a bright and balmy day. The cafés dotting the banks of the Alster were packed. It's difficult to think of a more perfect location for a cappuccino.
We also encountered multiple marinas… location, location, location.
Needless to say, the area surrounding this exclusive lake is not cheap. For the man or woman who has everything else, there is always a giant art nouveau Alster villa! Although wrapping it may be difficult, it is sure to surprise and delight the intended recipient.