Welcome to Cologne, the colourful and historic metropolis in Germany’s Rhineland area! Cologne is among the oldest cities in Germany, with a wealthy historical past that stretches again over two thousand years. From its beautiful Gothic structure, to its vibrant nightlife, and its stunning riverfront, Cologne is an unforgettable vacation spot.

On this information, you’ll discover all the data it is advisable profit from your time visiting Cologne. From prime points of interest to scrumptious native delicacies, we’ll present you the very best of what this metropolis has to supply. So, let’s get began exploring the gorgeous metropolis of Cologne!

See additionally: Off The Beaten Track Tip: Belgian Quarter Cologne

A snapshot of what to anticipate when visiting Cologne

The distinctive flavour to the town of Cologne is usually put all the way down to the inhabitants, or Kölsche, who take an unlimited quantity of delight of their metropolis. Cologne, like most areas of Germany, has its very personal native dialect of German, although that is unlikely to hinder the common sight-seeing vacationer, as lots of the landmarks of the town have English-speaking guides and data.

For these vacationers who communicate German, and want to observe it, the residents have quite a lot of endurance with these attending to grips with the grammatically tough language.

Colognians are very pleasant individuals; welcoming vacationers of every type and with all pursuits. Away from the landmarks, many staff of the German rail system (Deutsche Bahn) communicate English, in addition to ticket/timetable machines obtainable in English modes. Native transport programs, nevertheless, not often cater for the English speaker, with solely the naked necessities of data obtainable however this could solely concern these wishing to discover the town away from the extra centralised sights.

These wishing to discover away from the central metropolis ought to plan their journey earlier than leaving, to forestall minor issues as there’s a lack of English away from the centre of Cologne. Older individuals in Cologne are inclined to have little or no data of English, while businessmen and girls, in addition to the German youth, all are inclined to have data of the language. Language is never a powerful barrier, so this shouldn’t be an excessive amount of of a fear for the common vacationer, simply strategy a pleasant native and use a smile in your face, your legs and arms. Cologne’s sturdy aspect is its cultural life.

Should you go to Cologne alone, you gained’t keep alone for lengthy (any time of the yr). You simply have to go to a pub and it gained’t be lengthy, somebody will invite you for a beer!

Get the KölnCard

Uncover Cologne comfortably and cost-effectively with the KölnCard. With free entry to public transport you may journey for twenty-four or 48 hours and obtain reductions of as much as 50% from quite a few companions. The KölnCard is accessible for single individuals or teams.

– Free journey on buses and trains
– As much as 50% low cost at points of interest and museums
– As much as 50% low cost on guided excursions
– As much as 20% low cost at eating places
– As much as 15% low cost on buying

Get the cardboard here.

Cologne Carnival (Fastelovend)

Karneval, the largest festivity in Cologne is the Winter carnival (or Fastelovend) in February. In accordance with the official Cologne tourism web site: “Its spotlight is the road carnival happening from Weiberfastnacht (the Thursday earlier than Ash Wednesday, historically the day on which girls take management of the town) to Karnevalsdienstag (Shrove Tuesday).

On Rosenmontag (Shrove Monday) multiple and a half million individuals line Cologne’s streets to look at the parade with the mad triad – the prince, farmer, and virgin – yearly.”

Dates for Cologne Carnival: It begins on the Thursday earlier than the start of Lent every year.

I’m at all times telling mates that the Cologne Carnival is likely to be the very best carnival on this planet. Okay, I do know it’s fairly one thing to say that, as there are numerous nice locations on the market with nice Carnival experiences. However Cologne Carnival is exclusive!

Everybody… actually…Everybody will get dressed up! Folks run round as clowns, cowboys, Indians, self-made costumes & no matter you wish to be! The songs you’ll hear are all in “Kölsch”, the dialect and most of them are about carnival and concerning the metropolis and its individuals.

Visiting Cologne during Cologne Carnival
Visiting Cologne throughout Cologne Carnival

Cologne is known for its Kölsch (beer)

Cologne is thought for its love of beer, sometimes called Kölsch. This top-fermented beer is normally gentle in colour and has a distinctively dry and crisp style, because of its native substances. It is usually served in a particular glass known as a Kölschstange, which is designed to maintain the beer chilly and carbonated.

Cologne has a wealthy brewing tradition, with dozens of native breweries producing Kölsch and different beers. Among the hottest embody Reissdorf Kölsch, Gaffel Kölsch, and Sion Kölsch. Many of those conventional beers are served in pubs and eating places all through the town, typically accompanied by a plate of hearty native meals.

To style as many Kölsch as you may, be a part of this brewery tour.

The town additionally performs host to a variety of beer festivals all year long, together with the well-known Cologne Carnival that we simply talked about. Throughout this time, 1000’s of individuals come to the town for its distinctive mixture of events and parades, in addition to its beer.

Along with conventional Kölsch, Cologne additionally produces a variety of craft beers. These embody IPAs, wheat beers, and even bitter beers, which have gotten more and more standard. There are additionally a variety of specialty bars and retailers all through.

See additionally: Traditional Beer and Food in Cologne

Früh - Famous Brewery and pub in Cologne, Germany.
Früh – Well-known Brewery and pub in Cologne. Depositphotos.com

Conventional meals in Cologne

Cologne is an excellent metropolis stuffed with tradition and custom, and that is very true relating to its meals. Conventional meals in Cologne is a mixture of influences from all around the world, giving it a singular and scrumptious taste.

Probably the most standard conventional dishes in Cologne is the Kölschbraten. This can be a sausage that’s served with both sauerkraut or mashed potatoes. It’s typically served with a aspect of apple sauce and is a very talked-about dish for locals and guests alike.

One other conventional dish is the Halver Hahn, which is a rye bread roll stuffed with butter, cheese, and onions. This can be a very talked-about snack in Cologne and is usually served in pubs or cafes.

Cologne can be recognized for its quite a few beers and ales, which are sometimes served with conventional German meals similar to sausages, pretzels, and sauerkraut.

For these searching for extra hearty conventional dishes, there may be the “Himmel und Erde”, which is a dish made with mashed potatoes.

Prime sights in Cologne

Cologne is a wonderful metropolis in Germany, stuffed with superb sights which might be price seeing. Whether or not you’re exploring the town for the primary time or revisiting your favourite spots, listed here are the highest sights in Cologne that you just gained’t need to miss.

Try these Cologne activities available on Get Your Guide:

The Cologne Cathedral, protected by the UNESCO

Protected by UNESCO, Cologne’s Dom is the primary sight you’ll discover when taking the primary exit from the central station. (Should you don’t see it, you’ve taken the again exit.) In case you are in fine condition, take the 509 stairs to the highest of the south tower. It takes about an hour, so put on comfy sneakers, nevertheless it’s definitely worth the hike.

Touring the Cathedral is forbidden throughout Mass. Entry into the cathedral is free however you may be requested for a donation.

  • Admission to the tower prices (common/decreased): €6/€3
  • Admission to the treasury prices (common/decreased): €6/€3, nevertheless, a mixed ticket granting you admission to the treasury and tower will be bought for (common/decreased): €9/€4.50.
Cologne Cathedral
Cologne Cathedral

Römisch-Germanisches Museum

The Römisch-Germanisches Museum is a museum devoted to archaeology and the historical past of Cologne. It’s one of many oldest museums in Germany and was based in 1912. Inside, you may discover collections of stone monuments, mosaics, and cash from the Roman interval. There are additionally sections devoted to medieval and trendy artwork, together with a sculpture park.

Kölner Philharmonie

The Kölner Philharmonie is a live performance corridor situated within the metropolis middle. It’s probably the most famend live performance halls in Germany and hosts performances by a few of the world’s greatest orchestras, choirs, and soloists. The corridor is dwelling to the Gürzenich Orchestra and the Kölner Philharmoniker and has world-class acoustics that make it an ideal place to expertise reside classical music.

Cologne Zoo

The Cologne Zoo is among the oldest zoos in Germany and is dwelling to over 8,000 animals. It’s an ideal place to spend a day with household and mates and is stuffed with fascinating displays and points of interest. Highlights embody the favored elephant and giraffe enclosure, the aquarium, and the tropical home.


The KölnTriangle is a contemporary advanced situated within the Cologne Commerce Truthful. It homes museums, retailers, eating places, and workplaces, in addition to a big commentary deck with panoramic views of the town. The KölnTriangle is a good spot to absorb the sights of the town and get a glimpse of the encircling space.

These are just some of the highest sights in Cologne. From historic landmarks to trendy points of interest, there’s something for everybody to discover. So be certain to take the time to discover the town and absorb all of its magnificence.


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