Köln: the city of Germany which invented Cologne to add beautiful aroma in our lives, is the largest and most populated city of Germany. The 2000-years glorious history of this ancient city was heavily bombarded during the Second World War, but still it has 12 great Romanesque churches and Cathedrals, Braque Palaces, and around three dozen museums that reflect the glorious era of this Roman provincial capital through the darker times of medieval to the various specialties of the city: fragrances, mustard, and chocolates. Köln is one of the most important historical remains, home to multiple arts and entertainment facilities, and around 200 galleries. If you have a trip to Germany, visit Köln, and you would never run out of the activities and tourist attractions in the city. Let’s have a look at few most beautiful places of them.
1. Köln Cathedral
This towering landmark and a majestic masterpiece of gothic architecture stand proudly on the left bank of the river Rhine. This Cathedral houses St. Peter and St. Mary is amongst the largest cathedrals of Europe and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This beautiful building project of middle ages started in 1248. The majestic building has two 157-tall towers with the ravishing interior, a soaring ceiling supported by 56 pillars. It covers the total area of 6,166 sqm. The Cathedral is rich in treasures like the 12th-century Reliquary of the three kings engraved by the local goldsmiths, the famous Relief of Adoration of the Kings from 1440.
2. Köln Old Town
While exploring the gigantic Cathedrals and treasures museums you will come across the city’s lovely Old Town. You would be passing by the countless alleys lined with traditional old houses, that are now mostly turned into boutiques, galleries, cafés, and restaurants due to their marvelous appearances. A walk along the Rhine is filled with the pleasure of watching beautiful and satisfying scenes filled with the renaissance romance. While visiting this ancient city Köln, you would also see various monuments and fountains adorning this archaeological zone of ancients remains and artifacts. A landmark of this old town is the Köln Old Town Hall, the Kölner Rathaus, the oldest public building of its kind. It has the history of as old as 900 years when it used to be an apple of the eye for the ruling class of medieval. This is the reason why the building features various divergent architectural influences like the 14th- century main building, the 15th-century twin towers, Renaissance-inspired loggia and cloister, and the 20th-century atrium.
3. Rhine River Cruises
Don’t miss to see the river scenery when you visit Köln. You can have the best experience by viewing the beautiful city in the boat. In the One-hour Köln Sightseeing Cruise trip, you can view various unmatched scenes like the twin towers of the Köln Cathedral, the glorious buildings of the old town and the Hohenzollern Bridge. Another thing to do on the river at night is the Rhine River Evening Panorama Cruise which is a delightful two-hour sailing to see the city aglow with lights. If you need to explore the Rhine Valley completely, you can spend an entire day at Rhine River Cruise to Königswinter.
4. The Wallraf-Richartz and Ludwig Museums
If you are planning to visit Köln to quench your thirst for art, you must go to both museums. They have modern architectural structures and are home to excellent galleries that cover a wide range of European painting art. There are the works of Rembrandt, Manet, Renoir, Leibl, Liebermann, and Slevogt. The Wallraf-Richartz Museum is particularly rich with the work of the Köln School. On the other hand, Ludwig features modern and contemporary art. You can also visit the Agfa-Foot-Historama in the same building where you will find the photographs and cameras belonging to 1840.
5. Köln Zoological Gardens
These gardens prove to be more attractive for the people who visit Köln with their kids. The gardens were established in 1860, hence is the oldest of Germany’s Zoological Gardens. Here you can see the 19th-century menagerie building, a Moorish-style elephant house and an old birdhouse that resembles the traditional Russian church. Other attractions in the zoo are Ape Island with artificial rainforests; a well-stocked aquarium; and a majestic big cat encloser that has the biotope habitat where the animals can be seen without bars, don’t worry they are caged with glass. For the history lovers, the history of the zoo can be unfolded through the modern facilities retrofitted into historic buildings of the medieval menagerie.
6. Köln’s Birds‘- Eye View
This beautiful city has the first European cable car across a river, that was established in 1957. It has carried millions of passengers over the years. Obviously, you can have a different and most beautiful dimension of the Old Town, Köln Cathedral, and the Rhine from the above. For having more views you can visit Köln Telecommunication Tower, locally known as Colonies, which is located at the worthiest if the Old Town. This 243 meters high tower is a superb platform that has a revolving restaurant too. You can also go to see Köln Triangle which is another striking panoramic viewing platform.
7. Chocolate Museum
The Köln Chocolate Museum dates back to 1972. Hans Imhoff got the Stollwerck chocolate factory and found some remnants of the chocolate manufacturing apparatus and machinery. He chose them to be the basis of the museum. Now the museum exhibits everything from beans to bonbon. There you find interactive displays, a big collection of molds, antique boxes and wrappers of chocolates, and a functional production line, where you can observe the whole manufacturing process of chocolates. The best part is, that you can design your own chocolate bar to take home.
Köln is a beautiful place to visit in Germany, especially for historical purposes. You can explore history with many amusements available there. So, if you are going to visit Germany, add Köln to your cards. Have a nice trip.