Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany (with Map & Photos)

Cologne It is the largest city in North Rhine-Westphalia with more than one million inhabitants, and one of the most important industrially speaking in western Germany. The city has great attractions to visit, but the best known is its impressive cathedral, one of the wonders of German Gothic.

Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany
Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany

Just leaving the train station, you find yourself in front of it, with its verticality, grandeur and harmony that alone make a visit to the city necessary. For me, one of the most impressive monuments I have seen, and that although I have seen it more than 10 times, it never ceased to amaze me just by seeing it. The visit inside the cathedral is free, but you do have to pay to climb the tower. It is not very expensive (at most € 3) and there is a discount for students. It is worth going up at least once to enjoy the views of the city. Of course, get ready to exercise, as you have to climb 553 steps on a narrow spiral staircase.

We went from the cathedral to the Hohenzollern bridge. An iron railway bridge that spans the Rhine and links the two parts of the city. Now pedestrians and the train or tram can pass, although originally (before being destroyed) it was used for rail and road vehicles. Among all the curiosities, it stands out that lovers of Cologne and tourists put padlocks on the iron structure, as a sign of their love, and later throw the key into the river Rhine. From one side or the other of the bridge, they enjoy of incredible views of both the river and the cathedral.

Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany
Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany

Another of the great attractions of the city are the famous colorful houses that are next to the Gross St Martin church. These wonders are found strolling along the banks of the Rhine. Its pale colors that contrast with the church make it a most beautiful postcard. You can't leave without taking a photo.

Cologne also has a lot of Roman history, churches, and culture. There are two well-known museums, a Roman one (which I did not visit) and a chocolate one: Schokoladenmuseum, a paradise to enjoy the history of cocoa and its transformation process, and with a sweet included at the end of the visit to taste!

Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany
Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany

I was lucky to experience Christmas in Germany, known worldwide for its Christmas markets. Cologne has no more and no less than five markets! I only visited one, and I have to say that the one in Colonia is the one that I liked and surprised the most, since there was an ice rink there, it was like being inside a story.

Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany
Cologne North Rhine Westphalia Germany

Cologne boasts of celebrating the best carnival in Germany. It has two carnivals: one in November and one in February. The carnival kicks off at eleven o'clock and eleven minutes on the eleventh of eleven (November) at the Alter Markt, although the peak day is Carnival Monday, the "Rosenmontag" (Rose Monday), one one of the best parades of allegorical, mocking and provocative floats that parade through the streets of the city under the motto "Kölle Alaaf" which means: Cologne belongs to everyone. You cannot miss this crazy show.

There are other options to visit that I did not have the pleasure of doing which are the Botanical Garden and the Great Zoo, located on the western side of the city and not far from the Rhine. In addition, the city has its airport, Köln/ Bonn Airport, which has numerous airlines in different parts of Europe, with great offers. Just 30 km from Cologne you will find the city of Bonn (which I did not visit) but it is known for Beethoven's house, its cathedral and the famous Hariboo store.

Cologne Map