Situated close to Bonn, Cologne, known in Germany as Köln is the 4th biggest city in Germany apart from being the biggest in the North Rhine-Westphalia region. Boasting of the Rhine River as its neighbor, this city, irrespective of its size, is exceedingly beautiful. Apart from the various tourist attractions, Cologne is also a historian’s delight, what with its breathtaking cathedral (Kölner Dom).

Apart from this, there are the riverside beer gardens and the exquisite 19th century Cologne Botanic Gardens, famous all over the world for its themed landscaping and exotic plants. A tour to this city remains incomplete without undertaking a cruise along the River Rhine. The climate of this city, influenced by the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, is pleasant throughout the year. Mild snowfall takes place during the winter.

Cologne downtown

Cologne downtown

Cologne main tourist attractions

Cologne Cathedral: The immense cologne Cathedral is perhaps the best known of the German historic Churches. Construction on this Gothic masterpiece started in 1248 and was not completed until 1880. The cathedral was built over seven successive centuries, often with sons taking over where their father’s left off. The exceptional cathedral is a testament to the endurance and strength of Christianity in Europe. The UNESCO committee chose the cathedral for its value as an exceptional work of creative human genius.

Church of St. Gereon/ St. Gereon’s Basilica: There is a long history behind the construction of this medieval church, built between 1151 and 1227, dedicated to the memory of St. Gereon. The construction of this church follows the Romanesque style of architecture. Visitors are awed by its huge interiors and spellbound by its intricate stonework. Visitors should check out the 10-sided central vault, dating back to 1220 and built atop remains of the Roman walls. Apart from this, there are various other Churches and Cathedrals like Church of St. Ursula, Church of St. Maria im Kapitol, and the Cologne Cathedral.

The Cologne Triangle: Built by the famous architect Gatermann Schossig, the Cologne Triangle is a slender, yet prominent 103-meter tall glass wrapped office tower. Tourists are amazed by the transparency of this structure that seem to defy the traditional laws of aerodynamics. Visitors are recommended to visit the viewing balcony of this structure from where they can have a breathtaking view of the city.

Cologne Cathedral

Cologne Cathedral

The Cologne Zoo: Also known as Aktiengesellschaft Cologne Zoological Garden, the Cologne Zoo is the 3rd largest of its kind in Germany, and is considered to be one of the city’s top tourist destinations. Established in 1860, this zoo keeps visitors enthralled with its attractions that include the aquarium, the elephant house, the owl house, monkey island, the insectarium, and much more. It is also among the few zoos that takes care of and breeds endangered animals.

Must Visit: Other locales of interest to tourists include The Botanic Garden, Das Delfter Haus, Gross St Martins Cologne, KolnArena, Kolner Philharmonie, Media Park, Minoritenkirche, Old Town Cologne, Rheinauhafen, Schloss Augustusburg, The Town Hall, and Weltstadthaus

Festivals and Events:

Christopher Street Day: Quite a number of festivals and events take place in Colone with the most popular one being Christopher Street Day. Gays and lesbians from all over the world take part in this festival, which receives mass coverage from local television stations. It attracts more than 500,000 people who take part in a grand parade.

Worth mentioning: The other festivals of this city include the Christmas Market, and the Cologne Carnival… held in February.

Cologne Old town houses and Saint Martin Church

Cologne Old town houses and Saint Martin Church

Transportation & Lodging:

Flights, train, bus, and car connects Cologne with the rest of the world. Accommodation is no problem with hotels suitable for all budgets readily available. Cologne, a shopper’s paradise, is also renowned for its nightlife.