Cologne, Germany: 10 Places to Visit and 5 Places to Avoid
Cologne, Germany is a city with a rich cultural history and plenty of attractions for visitors to explore. From the iconic Cologne Cathedral to the lively nightlife, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city. In this article, we’ll take a look at 10 places to visit in Cologne and 5 places to avoid.
1. Cologne Cathedral
The iconic Cologne Cathedral is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Germany. It’s an impressive Gothic structure that has been standing for hundreds of years and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can explore the cathedral’s interior, admire its stained glass windows, or climb the south tower for breathtaking views of the city.
2. Chocolate Museum
If you have a sweet tooth, then you won’t want to miss the Chocolate Museum in Cologne. This museum is dedicated to the history of chocolate-making in the city, with interactive exhibits and plenty of samples for visitors to try. There’s also a cafe where you can indulge in some of the city’s finest chocolates.
3. Cologne Zoo
Cologne Zoo is one of the largest and most popular zoos in Europe. It’s home to more than 700 species of animals, including elephants, giraffes, and polar bears. Visitors can explore the zoo’s various exhibits, watch educational shows, and even take part in animal encounters.
4. Hohenzollern Bridge
The Hohenzollern Bridge is one of the most beautiful bridges in Germany and a popular spot for both locals and tourists. Spanning the Rhine river, the bridge is adorned with numerous love locks, and offers stunning views of the city skyline. It’s also a great place for a romantic stroll.
5. Museum Ludwig
Museum Ludwig is one of the most important art museums in Germany. Its collection includes works from modern masters such as Picasso, Dali, and Warhol, as well as a large selection of contemporary art. The museum also hosts regular special exhibitions and events.
6. Kölner Philharmonie
The Kölner Philharmonie is one of the most renowned concert halls in Europe. It’s home to the Cologne Philharmonic Orchestra, and hosts a variety of concerts, operas, and other events throughout the year. Visitors can also take guided tours of the building and learn about its history.
7. Alter Markt
Alter Markt is a bustling square in the heart of Cologne. It’s surrounded by historic buildings, cafes, and restaurants, and is a popular meeting place for locals. On weekends, the square is transformed into a lively market, where visitors can browse stalls selling local produce, crafts, and more.
8. Cologne Cable Car
For an unforgettable view of the city, take a ride on the Cologne Cable Car. This cable car takes visitors up to the top of the TV Tower, where they can enjoy panoramic views of the city skyline and the Rhine river. It’s also a great way to get around and explore the city from above.
9. Cologne City Hall
Cologne City Hall is a beautiful Gothic building located in the center of the city. It’s home to the city’s government, and visitors can take guided tours of the building to learn about its history and architecture. The building also houses a number of interesting artifacts and documents.
10. Cologne Nightlife
No visit to Cologne is complete without experiencing its lively nightlife. The city has numerous bars, clubs, and pubs, offering everything from traditional German beer to international cocktails. There’s also a variety of live music venues, where visitors can enjoy jazz, blues, and more.
Places to Avoid in Cologne
While Cologne is a vibrant and welcoming city, there are still some places visitors should avoid. Here are 5 places to avoid in Cologne:
Rudolfplatz is a public square in Cologne that has become a hangout spot for drug dealers and other criminals. It’s best avoided, especially at night.
2. Train Stations
Train stations in Cologne, like any major city, can be dangerous places. Pickpockets and other criminals often loiter in these areas, so it’s best to remain vigilant and keep your belongings close.
3. Cologne East
Cologne East is a neighborhood in the east of the city that has become known for its crime rate. It’s best to avoid this area unless you know it well and feel safe.
4. Red Light District
Cologne’s red light district is another area that should be avoided. While it can be a lively place during the day, it’s best to stay away at night due to the presence of drug dealers and other criminals.
5. Unfamiliar Areas
In general, it’s best to avoid wandering into unfamiliar areas, especially at night. Stick to well-lit streets and areas that are familiar to you.
Cologne is a vibrant and exciting city with plenty of attractions for visitors to explore. From the iconic Cologne Cathedral to the lively nightlife, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city. However, there are also some places to avoid in Cologne, such as Rudolfplatz, train stations, Cologne East, the red light district, and unfamiliar areas. By following these tips, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable visit to Cologne.