Cologne is a beautiful, cultural city located on both sides of the river Rhine, near German’s borders with Belgium and the Netherlands. Cologne is a major cultural centre for the Rhineland as it contains more than 30 museums and hundreds of galleries. But if you’ve only got a limited time in the city here are five things you must visit.
by Hannah Brown.
1) Visit Cologne Cathedral
Cologne Cathedral is a Roman Catholic cathedral and is the seat of the Archbishop of Cologne. Situated next to the Rhine, the cathedral towers over the surrounding buildings. It’s so big it can easily be spotted from a plane coming into Cologne airport. This is a must see because it is so grand and beautiful and it is an iconic image of Cologne. Definitely not one to be missed.
2) Museum Ludwig
The Museum Ludwig houses what is considered by some to be one of the most important collections of modern art in Europe. The museum includes a Picasso collection which is matched only by museums in Barcelona and Paris.
Imhof-Schokoladenmuseum is a chocolate museum and is one of the top ten German museums. The museum provides an insight to the history of chocolate and how the chocolate making processes have changed over the years. Some of the attractions the museum has on offer include a small tropicarium where visitors can see the trees that grow the cocoa beans, and a three metre high chocolate fountain, where employees dip wafers in the chocolate and pass them out to visitors.
4) Hohenzollern Bridge
The Hohenzollern Bridge crosses the river Rhine opposite Cologne Cathedral. The bridge has a long history, but more recently it has been used by couples to place love padlocks on the fence between the railway and the footpath. The fence is now overloaded with padlocks, but it is a beautiful sight to see so many declarations of love in one place.
5) Walk along the Rhine
The Rhine river is 764 miles long, so you can’t walk all the way along it in one day. However it cuts through the middle of Cologne, so by taking a stroll along this section of it you will be able to see a lot of Cologne’s iconic sights. The perfect activity if your time in the city is limited.
If you do visit all of these places and still have more time in the city, then here are a few suggestions of things to do that are only a short train journey away.
Drachenburg Castle is the real life embodiment of a Disney castle. Located near Bonn it is only a short train journey away from Cologne and it is well worth the visit. Visitors can ride a small train up the hill side to reach the castle, which was built in the 1800s. Even on a cloudy day the views around the castle are amazing, so make sure you have enough space on your camera because you’ll want to take a lot of pictures of this castle.
Ludwig van Beethoven is one of the most famous composers of all time. In his childhood home in Bonn a museum dedicated to his life and work has been created. The museum contains the largest Beethoven collection in the world, including authentic documents relating to his life and compositions.