HomeTravelA Information to Visiting Cologne, Germany

A Information to Visiting Cologne, Germany

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

On this information, you’ll in finding all of the knowledge you wish to have to benefit from your time visiting Cologne. From peak sights to scrumptious native delicacies, we’ll display you the most efficient of what this town has to provide.

So, let’s get began exploring the pretty town of Cologne!

See additionally: Off The Crushed Monitor Tip: Belgian Quarter Cologne

This is an outline:

A snapshot of what to anticipate when visiting Cologne

The unique flavour to town of Cologne is continuously put right down to the population, or Kölsche, who take a huge quantity of pleasure of their town. Cologne, like maximum spaces of Germany, has its very personal native dialect of German, although that is not likely to impede the common sight-seeing vacationer, as lots of the landmarks of town have English-speaking guides and data.

For the ones vacationers who discuss German, and need to follow it, the voters have numerous endurance with the ones attending to grips with the grammatically tricky language.

Colognians are very pleasant other folks; welcoming vacationers of all kinds and with all pursuits. Clear of the landmarks, many employees of the German rail device (Deutsche Bahn) discuss English, in addition to price tag/timetable machines to be had in English modes. Native shipping techniques, then again, hardly cater for the English speaker, with handiest the naked necessities of data to be had however this will have to handiest fear the ones wishing to discover town clear of the extra centralised points of interest.

The ones wishing to discover clear of the central town will have to plan their adventure sooner than leaving, to forestall minor headaches as there’s a loss of English clear of the centre of Cologne. Older other folks in Cologne generally tend to have very little wisdom of English, while businessmen and girls, in addition to the German formative years, all generally tend to have a excellent wisdom 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 method a pleasant local and use a grin for your face, your legs and arms. Cologne’s sturdy facet is its cultural lifestyles.

When you talk over with Cologne on my own, you received’t keep on my own for lengthy (any time of the 12 months). You simply need to talk over with a pub and it received’t be lengthy, any individual will invite you for a lager!

Get the KölnCard

Uncover Cologne with ease and cost-effectively with the KölnCard. With loose get entry to to public shipping you’ll be able to go back and forth for twenty-four or 48 hours and obtain reductions of as much as 50% from a lot of companions. The KölnCard is to be had for unmarried individuals or teams.

– Unfastened go back and forth on buses and trains
– As much as 50% cut price at sights and museums
– As much as 50% cut price on guided excursions
– As much as 20% cut price at eating places
– As much as 15% cut price on buying groceries

Get the cardboard right here.

Cologne Carnival (Fastelovend)

Karneval, the most important joyful celebration in Cologne is the Iciness carnival (or Fastelovend) in February. In step with the reputable Cologne tourism site: “Its spotlight is the road carnival going down from Weiberfastnacht (the Thursday sooner than Ash Wednesday, historically the day on which girls take regulate of town) to Karnevalsdienstag (Shrove Tuesday).

On Rosenmontag (Shrove Monday) a couple of and a part million other folks line Cologne’s streets to look at the parade with the mad triad – the prince, farmer, and virgin – annually.”

Dates for Cologne Carnival: It begins at the Thursday sooner than the start of Lent each and every 12 months.

I’m at all times telling pals that the Cologne Carnival could be the most efficient carnival on the planet. Good enough, I realize it’s relatively one thing to mention that, as there are lots of nice puts in the market with nice Carnival stories. However Cologne Carnival is exclusive!

Everybody… in reality…Everybody will get dressed up! Other people run round as clowns, cowboys, Indians, self-made costumes & no matter you love to be! The songs you’ll listen are all in “Kölsch”, the dialect and maximum of them are about carnival and in regards to the town and its other folks.

The party continues after the parade as street carnival in Cologne, Germany.
The birthday party continues after the parade as boulevard carnival in Cologne, Germany.

Cologne is legendary for its Kölsch (beer)

Cologne is understood for its love of beer, continuously known as Kölsch. This top-fermented beer is normally mild in colour and has a distinctively dry and crisp style, due to its native elements. Additionally it is served in a unique glass known as a Kölschstange, which is designed to stay the beer chilly and carbonated.

Cologne has a wealthy brewing tradition, with dozens of native breweries generating Kölsch and different beers. Probably the most hottest come with Reissdorf Kölsch, Gaffel Kölsch, and Sion Kölsch. Many of those conventional beers are served in pubs and eating places all through town, continuously accompanied through a plate of hearty native meals.

To style as many Kölsch as you’ll be able to, sign up for this brewery excursion.

Town additionally performs host to quite a few beer gala’s all through the 12 months, together with the well-known Cologne Carnival that we simply discussed. All the way through this time, hundreds of other folks come to town for its distinctive mixture of events and parades, in addition to its beer.

Along with conventional Kölsch, Cologne additionally produces quite a few craft beers. Those come with IPAs, wheat beers, or even bitter beers, which might be changing into increasingly more in style. There also are quite a few distinctiveness bars and stores all through.

See additionally: Conventional Beer and Meals in Cologne

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

Conventional foods in Cologne

Cologne is an excellent town filled with tradition and custom, and that is very true with regards to its meals. Conventional meals in Cologne is a mixture of influences from in all places the sector, giving it a novel and scrumptious taste.


On the whole, it is very important apply a nutritious diet. On the other hand, there are occasions while you simply wish to indulge, like while you devour a cured and cooked red meat knuckle. However if you wish to keep watch over your determine, you’ll be able to bring to a halt the visual bacon and devour handiest part of the shank. To make the dish extra balanced, it’s additionally a good suggestion to concentrate on the facet dishes like sauerkraut or mashed potatoes!

Cooked pork knuckle
Cooked red meat knuckle

Halver Hahn

Some other conventional dish is the Halver Hahn. When you haven’t learn up on it, the identify may mistakenly lead you to be expecting part a roast hen – however in the event you’re then served just a rye roll with medium-aged Gouda, onions, butter and mustard through the Köbes (the waiter on the brewery) you’ll be in for a marvel! In Cologne, then again, we all know that that is the mythical Halve Hahn.

This can be a very talked-about snack in Cologne and is continuously served in pubs or cafes.

Halver Hahn in Cologne, Germany.
Halver Hahn in Cologne, Germany.

Kölsche Kaviar (Cologne Caviar)

Very similar to “Halver Hahn”, the distinctiveness “Kölsche Kaviar” may just additionally result in confusion. However not like the extremely pricey fish roe, this delicacy has completely not anything in commonplace with it.

Kölsche caviar is a hearty portion of blood sausage, affectionately identified in Cologne as “Flönz”. This delicacy is served with a crispy “Röggelchen,” onion rings, and a beneficiant sprint of mustard – once in a while accompanied through a crunchy pickled gherkin.

Rheinischer Sauerbraten (Soorbrode) – Rhenish Sauerbraten

German delicacies has many conventional dishes, together with Sauerbraten. When you apply the Rhenish recipe (identified in Cologne as “Soorbrode”), it’s subtle with sweeteners corresponding to apple or turnip, and raisins also are added.

A very powerful truth: The beef for sauerbraten is normally horse. On the other hand, many Cologne breweries and eating places use pork as a substitute out of attention for his or her visitors.

This hearty braised dish is classically served with potato dumplings and applesauce, however now and again boiled potatoes also are served.

Rheinischer Sauerbraten.
Rheinischer Sauerbraten.

Himmel un Äd

For the ones on the lookout for extra hearty conventional dishes, there may be the “Himmel und Erde” (Heaven and earth), which is a dish made with mashed potatoes. A scrumptious variation is served in Cologne: Crispy fried blood sausage and roasted onions upload a hearty taste to the potato and apple mash. Have it with a tumbler of Kölsch beer.

The dish, which takes its identify from the typical time period “Erdapfel” for potatoes – apples from the bottom – and the fruit at the timber within the sky, is an actual deal with for the palate.

Miesmuscheln – Moschele

You will have to know that mussels are normally served handiest from September to February. The background is most likely historic, at a time when there have been no fridges and it used to be too heat to retailer them.

The mussels are cooked in a broth of white wine and recent root greens with bay leaf and pimento, they’re merely scrumptious!

Bowl with Miesmuscheln
Bowl with Miesmuscheln


Some other in style dishes in Cologne is the Bratwurst. This can be a sausage this is served with both sauerkraut or mashed potatoes. It’s continuously served with a facet of apple sauce and is a very talked-about dish for locals and guests alike.

Sausages, Pretzels and Sauerkraut

Cologne may be identified for its a lot of beers and ales, which might be continuously served with conventional German meals corresponding to sausages, pretzels, and sauerkraut.

Non-public 3-Hour Südstadt Meals Excursion

Start your three-hour stroll within the middle of Südstadt at Chlodwigplatz and immerse your self within the culinary secrets and techniques of the district sooner than taking part in your first tasting.

As you stroll, you’ll get a glimpse into the historical past of Südstadt. Prevent for a world deal with and uncover cool thrift and curio stores.

Then talk over with a standard Cologne brewery and chill out with a regular Cologne snack. Your information will proportion his insider wisdom and inform you tales in regards to the Balchem Area, St. Severin’s and even the “unsuitable” a part of the Rhine financial institution.

On the finish of this excursion of Cologne’s culinary tradition, you’ll enjoy much more unique cuisine from in all places the sector, together with a candy distinctiveness!

Sophia is an out of this world information with a heat persona and a wealth of anecdotes. She has an intensive wisdom of the Severinviertel and conveys it in a sympathetic approach. The excursion provides a a success mixture of culinary delights and historic background wisdom – additionally extraordinarily thrilling for younger other folks!

Excellent to grasp: All the way through this excursion you’ll be accompanied through an skilled information and talk over with a complete of five world eating places to experience a style of each and every. Please word that beverages don’t seem to be incorporated and should be bought one by one.

Suedstadt Food Tour in Cologne, Germany.
Suedstadt Meals Excursion in Cologne, Germany.

Most sensible points of interest in Cologne

Cologne is a gorgeous town in Germany, stuffed with wonderful points of interest which are value seeing. Whether or not you’re exploring town for the primary time or revisiting your favourite spots, listed here are the highest points of interest in Cologne that you just received’t wish to leave out.

Take a look at those Cologne actions to be had on Get Your Information:

The Cologne Cathedral, safe through the UNESCO

Safe through UNESCO, Cologne’s Dom is the primary sight you’ll understand when taking the primary go out from the central station. (When you don’t see it, you’ve taken the again go out.)

If you’re in excellent form, take the 533 stairs to the highest of the south tower. It takes about 8-Quarter-hour to stand up and I’d counsel to spend 45 – 60 mins in general, so put on comfy sneakers, however it’s definitely worth the hike. A panoramic view of town awaits you as you climb to the highest of Cologne Cathedral. After about 53 meters you’ll go the Petersglocke – often referred to as the Cathedral Bell 1 and affectionately known as “Decker Pitter” through the locals. Since 1923, this bell has been the acoustic embodiment of the cathedral’s deep C-note.

Cologne Cathedral is a spot of superlatives. With a peak of 157 meters and a space of 10,000 sq. meters, it’s the 3rd greatest Gothic cathedral on the planet.

Round 20,000 other folks talk over with it each day and an improbable 300,000 heaps of stone have been used!

Inside of Cologne Cathedral there are lots of highlights to find that can encourage you. An absolute spotlight is the Shrine of the 3 Kings, which is alleged to include the “relics of the Magi” – no less than if you wish to consider it. Additionally spectacular is the 4th-century St. Peter’s Rod, which you’ll be able to recognize within the cathedral’s underground treasury, together with many different treasures corresponding to reliquaries, liturgical utensils, and manuscripts.

Some other attention-grabbing enjoy are the stained glass home windows of the cathedral: they convey an improbable energy of colour to the internal of the construction! With over 10,000 sq. meters of home windows, this sacred construction in reality has extra stained glass than some other church on the planet – a in reality magical position!

The price of keeping up the cathedral is round 30,000 Euros consistent with day – a big sum, however smartly justified for such an outstanding sight.

The worth of the cathedral can hardly ever be expressed in financial phrases: it’s precious and has subsequently been valued in accounting phrases at a symbolic worth of simply 27 Euros!

With a view to take care of this distinctive position, about 100 other folks paintings at the construction each day – they’re a part of the so-called “cathedral development staff”.

It isn’t for not anything that the cathedral is continuously known as Germany’s UNESCO Global Heritage Website; its importance extends some distance past its borders.

Traveling the Cathedral is forbidden throughout Mass. Access into the cathedral is loose however you’ll be requested for a donation.

  • Admission to the tower prices (common/diminished): €6/€3 (Circle of relatives card: €12)
  • Admission to the treasury prices (common/diminished): €6/€3,
  • A blended price tag granting you admission to the treasury and tower may also be bought for (common/diminished): €9/€4.50. (Circle of relatives combi card: €18)
  • Front to climb the Cologne cathedral: Take a look at the majestic primary portal of the Cathedral and stroll against Roncalliplatz, which is to the suitable of the Cathedral while you take a look at it from the entrance. After a couple of meters you’ll find a staircase that is going down subsequent to the South Tower and is marked “Dom-Turm / Parkhaus / Toiletten”. There you’ll in finding as smartly the doorway to the tower on the foot of the steps.
Cologne Cathedral
Cologne Cathedral

Cologne Cathedral: VR-Strolling Excursion

Enjoy a breathtaking adventure that takes you from the medieval making plans of the development to the current day. Uncover the tale in the back of the development of the cathedral and be informed thrilling info in regards to the construction procedure on this fascinating excursion.

Due to a digital truth headset, you’ll be immersed within the the most important moments of development! Greater than only a historical past lesson, it’s an journey via centuries of awe-inspiring insights.

The excursion will quilt a distance of one.5 km, so put on comfy sneakers. Notice, the excursion does no longer pass within the cathedral, however handiest across the out of doors.

Worth: €23
Max crew dimension: 15
Unfastened cancelation till 24 hours sooner than your talk over with.
Skip the road.

Römisch-Germanisches Museum

The Römisch-Germanisches Museum is a museum devoted to archaeology and the historical past of Cologne. It’s some of the oldest museums in Germany and used to be based in 1912.

Inside of, you’ll be able to discover collections of stone monuments, mosaics, and cash from the Roman duration. There also are sections devoted to medieval and trendy artwork, together with a sculpture park.

The museum provides the chance to surprise on the archaeological heritage from the Paleolithic Age to the early Center Ages. The gathering holdings are distinctive and come with wealthy unearths from the Stone, Bronze and Iron Ages, in addition to top-class goldsmith’s paintings from the Migration Length.

As well as, the museum gives you insights into the artwork and tradition of Roman and early medieval towns and areas.

In particular spectacular is the sector’s greatest selection of Roman glass vessels, which is thought of as probably the most valuable treasure of the museum.

Worth: €6 (€3 diminished)

Sculpture in the Römisch-Germanisches Museum in Cologne, Germany.
Sculpture within the Römisch-Germanisches Museum in Cologne, Germany.

Kölner Philharmonie

Within the speedy neighborhood of Cologne Cathedral, and with that proper within the town heart, you’ll in finding the Live performance Corridor “Kölner Philharmonie“.

It’s some of the famend live performance halls in Germany and it provides a various program of the good works of the symphonic and chamber song repertoire, in addition to jazz, people and dad occasions.

There’s a live performance each day of the 12 months, and continuously a number of on Sundays and vacations. The spectacular corridor is designed as an amphitheater, in order that each and every seat has a very good view of the degree.

The corridor may be house to the Gürzenich Orchestra and the Kölner Philharmoniker and its world-class acoustics makes it a great spot to enjoy are living classical song.

Amusing truth

It’s no longer allowed to stroll at the plaza above the roof of the Philharmonie throughout concert events, as this may disturb the good acoustics. Skateboarding and bicycling also are prohibited to steer clear of anxious footsteps.

Insider tip

If you’re in Cologne on a Thursday and if you wish to break out the hustle and bustle of town at 12 midday… Then you definitely will have to certainly test the Philharmonic Corridor to peer if the “Philharmonic Lunch” is going down there. Notice: Lunch isn’t a meal, it’s simply lunchtime. All the way through this time, you might have the chance to hear an orchestra practice session for half-hour totally free and get an original impact of ways the contributors get ready. An actual insider’s tip for any person – particularly since admission is loose! Right here

Inside of the Philharmonica in Cologne, Germany.
Inside the Philharmonica in Cologne, Germany.

Outdated The city Cologne

Cologne’s ancient Outdated The city is a well-liked vacationer vacation spot that has a tendency to steer clear of locals. Nonetheless, a talk over with to town is value a detour into the cobblestone streets and previous the ancient properties and a lot of breweries.

On the other hand, it’s absolute best to steer clear of a weekend talk over with, because the outdated the city is then continuously overrun through bachelor events.

To get a excellent impact of Cologne’s outdated the city, we advise a comfy walk in the course of the alleys between Heumarkt and Regulate Markt and alongside the Rhine prom.

Particularly attention-grabbing: Nearly 90% of Cologne’s outdated the city used to be destroyed throughout Global Conflict II after which most commonly rebuilt within the old fashioned – such a lot of constructions don’t seem to be as outdated as they appear!

Within the outdated the city you’ll additionally in finding the ancient the city corridor. You’ll be amazed through it, because it’s some of the magnificent Renaissance constructions in all of Germany. Town corridor tower is especially noteworthy: its loving main points have been faithfully rebuilt after the 2nd Global Conflict and provides it a novel good looks.

Oldtown Cologne, Germany.
Oldtown Cologne, Germany.

Cologne Zoo

The Cologne Zoo is among the oldest zoos in Germany and is house to over 8,000 animals. It’s a great spot to spend an afternoon with friends and family and is stuffed with attention-grabbing reveals and sights.

The elephant park is surely some of the primary sights at Cologne Zoo and may be the biggest north of the Alps.

Some other spotlight is the journey area Hippodom, which properties an intensive African river panorama – Nile crocodiles, Sitatunga antelopes and hippos, amongst others, are living right here in an outstanding surroundings.

Additionally very well-liked by guests is the Rainforest Area, which options endangered animals and vegetation from a herbal paradise in Southeast Asia.

The jungle area for the good apes, however, provides visitors the chance to look at primates up shut with out anxious them – a exhibit challenge of the Cologne Zoo for the entire of Europe!

For youngsters, the Clemenshof is a lovingly designed reproduction of a regular small farm with a petting zoo for uncommon local species.

And in the event you like fish or reptile presentations, you’ll be able to see numerous species within the aquarium on 3 flooring!

Worth: € 23
Opening hours:
09:00 – 18:00
Cope with: Riehler Straße 173, 50735 Cologne

Crocodile in the Zoo in Cologne, Germany.
Crocodile within the Zoo in Cologne, Germany.


You need to go the river rhine to get right here. And it’s value taking this brief stroll, as you’ll get the most efficient perspectives of the outdated the city, the cathedral and town from this facet of the river.

The KölnTriangle is a contemporary advanced situated with reference to the Cologne Industry Truthful. It properties museums, stores, eating places, and workplaces, in addition to a big statement deck with panoramic perspectives of town.

The KölnTriangle is an excellent spot to absorb the points of interest of town and get a glimpse of the encircling space.

KölnTriangle and the Hyatt Hotel in Cologne, Germany.
KölnTriangle and the Hyatt Resort in Cologne, Germany.

Chocolate Museum in Cologne

The chocolate museum in Cologne is an absolute spotlight that you just will have to no longer leave out – regardless of if large or small!

All the way through the thrilling excursion you’ll learn the way uncooked cocoa is become a scrumptious praline. The adventure starts within the tropical area and takes you from the harvest to the shipping to the manufacturing facility.

Scrumptious tastings permit you to dive even deeper into the sector of chocolate. Absolutely the spotlight of the museum, then again, is surely the three-meter-high fountain with 200 kilograms of flowing chocolate, which you might be after all additionally allowed to style. Within the museum’s café, you’ll be able to experience quite a lot of chocolate specialties whilst taking part in a view of the Rhine.

Your newly got wisdom in regards to the historical past and manufacturing of chocolate will make you recognize the tip product a lot more – that is what makes enjoyment in reality amusing!

The Chocolate Museum’s sweet store provides a number of treats to take house. Recent chocolate in a number of flavors and selfmade candies with a number of scrumptious fillings are to be had. When you’re partial to hand-poured collectible figurines created from the best chocolate, you’ll in finding all kinds of artfully designed creations.

When you have time, create your individual chocolate variation and pick out it up later. And in the event you’re partial to colourful cash, you’ll in finding your favourite amongst those hand-crafted cuisine!

Prices: Admission to the museum prices handiest €14.50 for adults and €7.5 for youngsters beneath the age of 16; in the meantime, little guests beneath the age of six will also experience themselves without spending a dime!

Skip the road with this price tag!

What awaits you within the museum is in reality incredible. The information texts are written in each German and English and the personnel welcomes you with nice courtesy and friendliness. It appears like a adventure via time as you stroll a number of the candies. And in the event you get hungry, the eating place provides numerous scrumptious muffins to make a choice from.

Chocolate fountain at the Chocolate Museum in Cologne, Germany.
Chocolate fountain on the Chocolate Museum in Cologne, Germany.


Simply subsequent to the Chocolate Museum you’ll have the Rheinauhafen.

Rheinauhafen, a former port facility in Cologne’s Südstadt district, has lengthy since transform a significant city building challenge. The city quarter is trendy and but characterised through ancient constructions, leading to an enchanting combine.

The outdated port place of business and different remnants of the commercial previous were transformed and now function place of business and repair constructions. Cafes, bars, and eating places additionally be offering the chance for a calming walk.

Along with the picturesque marina, the 3 placing crane properties are a unique spotlight of the Rheinauhafen. With a peak of just about 60 meters, they no longer handiest area workplaces, but additionally sumptuous condominiums – a in reality outstanding residing thought!

Crane houses in Cologne, Germany.
Crane properties in Cologne, Germany.

Streetart Motorbike Excursion Cologne

Embark on a boulevard artwork motorbike excursion that will provide you with a brand new standpoint on Cologne!

Off the crushed monitor, you’ll discover the Belgian Quarter and Ehrenfeld with a most of 15 like-minded other folks and a neighborhood information. Dive into the sector of boulevard galleries and enjoy town’s colourful ingenious scene up shut!

All the way through your excursion, your English-speaking information will inform you the whole lot you wish to have to learn about this attention-grabbing artwork shape, in addition to background knowledge at the person artists. This will provide you with a treasured perception into how Cologne has advanced through the years into a colourful city jungle.

Each and every of our excursions is in my opinion designed – as a result of no different town tradition can fit the colourful aptitude of this position. So clutch your motorbike and let’s dive into the city allure of Cologne’s numerous boulevard artwork scene!

Worth: €37
Length: 3 hours
Unfastened cancelation as much as 24 hours sooner than

The excursion comprises:

  • Use of town motorcycles on excursion
  • Helmets (to be had on request)
  • English talking information
  • Disposable rain ponchos (in case of unhealthy climate)
Street art in Cologne, Germany.
Side road artwork in Cologne, Germany.

Those are simply a number of the peak points of interest in Cologne. From ancient landmarks to fashionable sights, there’s something for everybody to discover.

So be sure that to make the effort to discover town and absorb all of its good looks.

  • Travel Dudes

    I am positive you could have had equivalent stories I had while touring. You are in a definite position and a fellow traveler, or a neighborhood, tip you off on a little-known seashore, bar or lodging. Nice go back and forth pointers from different vacationers or locals at all times upload one thing particular to our travels. That used to be the foundation for Shuttle Dudes.



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