Cologne Travel Tips – Germany’s Fourth Largest City
Cologne Travel Tips – Germany’s Fourth Largest City
Cologne Travel Tips. An article sharing travel tips about visiting Cologne. How to get there and more…
Mark Ford, Founder of Plus1 Travel
Welcome! It’s a pleasure having your here searching for Cologne travel tips. Cologne is the fourth most populated city in Germany, located in the North Rhine-Westphalia region with just over 1 million people living in the city. Cologne suffered greatly during WWII when it was bombed and over 70% of all historical buildings were destroyed. Since then every building has been restored and Cologne today is a thriving city.
Cologne is packed with universities, and whether there’s a correlation between that and having the most amount of pubs per capita God only knows. Cologne offers plenty of interesting museums and the German food culture is a safe bet for a good meal in Cologne. Held once a year, the Cologne carnival is one of the largest street festivals in Europe. Every 11 November at 11 minutes past 11am and hundreds of thousands of people come to visit Cologne during this time to dance, sing, drink, eat and enjoy Cologne!
Cologne Travel Tips – How To Get From The Airport To Cologne
Cologne is served by Köln-Bonn Airport located 14.8 kilometers from Cologne. When searching for Cologne travel tips and looking for how to get from the airport to Cologne in the fastest, best and cheapest way, there are a number of options. The public transport system in Cologne is excellent and getting from the airport into the city is a breeze. Let’s look closer at the various alternatives at your disposal.
Flights To Cologne
There are not one, but three train options that will get you from the airport to Cologne. The cheapest and best one is by hopping on the S-Bahn line S13, which costs $3 and gets you into Cologne central in just 14 minutes. Tickets can be bought at the vending machines at the station.
Taxis are readily available outside the arrivals hall and will get you into Cologne in around 15 minutes. The price for a standard taxi is around €27. Uber is also operating in Cologne.
Cologne Travel Tips – How To Get Around Cologne
When searching for Cologne travel tips and how to best get around Cologne, this is a very walkable city. With many of the major tourist attractions located in the center of the city. Enjoying a nice walk along the riverbank and though the Old Town is a perfect way to enjoy Cologne by foot. Cologne has a great public transport system that is easy to navigate and will get you around the city effortlessly.
Cologne Public Transport
Since most Cologne’s tourist attractions are within walking distance, you will most likely ever need to jump on the U-bahn if traveling between Neumarkt and the main shopping square in Rudolfplatz or when going out for the nightlife in the Univirtel, Cologne’s University quarter. A single ticket cost €2.60 and a day pass cost €8.60 and can be purchased at the vending machines at the stations.Taxi
Taxis are plentiful in Cologne and available to hail on the street or book via taxi app such as Die Taxi-App, mytaxi or Uber.
Best Places To Stay In Cologne
Cologne has grown to become one of the coolest cities in Germany. After suffering horrendously during World War II with nearly the whole city and its population destroyed, Cologne has risen from the ashes and today there’s little that reminds us about the troubled past. When searching for Cologne travel tips there are plenty of nice areas to stay. It’s not always easy to know where to stay, so we’ve made it easy for you and listed the top three neighborhoods to stay in Cologne.
Old Town is located in the heart of Cologne and many houses date as far back as to the 13th and 14th century. The cobbled streets are filled with hundreds for small restaurants, cafés and bars. During the summer months it’s especially nice to enjoy a beer in the outside biergarten around here. Cologne cathedral stands tall in the middle of it all, it’s a magnificent structure with it’s 157 meters over sea level and detail that is awe-provoking. Old Town is your best bet if you want to live central and near the main attractions in Cologne.
Belgisches Viertel or the Belgium Quarter is located in the west on the outside of the city center and offers a laid back atmosphere with plenty of hip cafés, restaurants and unique shops with independent brands. The streets are mostly named after Belgium and Dutch cities and this is one of the coolest areas to stay in if you want a local Cologne experience and don’t mind living outside the city center.
Deutz is the best place for families to stay, with a laid back atmosphere the area is located just across the Rhine river from Old Town. Have a nice walk in the Rhinepark and during the summer months this area comes alive and you can take a family picnic at the local beach club. It’s easy to access Old Town from here and it’s the perfect area to stay if you want to live centrally, but in a laid back area that is not in the midst of it all.
Cologne has plenty of interesting local food options to offer and when searching for Cologne travel tips and what to eat in Cologne you won’t be disappointed or left hungry when visiting the city. Beer is in abundance in the city, as expected when talking about Germany, and Cologne has the most pubs per capita in the country. Here are some of the local foods worth trying in Cologne.
Halve Hahn means half rooster in german, but this sandwich actually has no rooster or chicken in it. It’s a traditional cheese and onion sandwich served on every menu in Cologne’s brewhouses and is a great afternoon snack to try out in Cologne.
Halve Hahn. Photo: German Foods
Himmel un Ääd is a play on heaven and earth (himmel und erde) and is a local dish with mashed potatoes, bacon, blackpudding, refined onions and apple sauce. Not your typical meal, right? Get out of the comfort zone and try it!
Reibekuchen are german pancakes that are usually served on christmas markets. Served with applesauce or just plain. Brewhouses, pubs and local restaurants often pair it with rye bread and salmon. Usually only served once a week, so check the restaurant menus if you want to try it.
Mettbrütche is a meat explosion that is a local favourite enjoyed all day long, for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Essentially a bread roll spread with butter and then added raw minced pork, onion and sprinkled with salt and pepper. Enjoy it with a cold glass of Kölsch beer and you’re good to go.
Top 7 Experiences You MUST Have In Cologne
Cologne Cathedral dates back to 1164 and has withstood the test of time. It’s 157 meters tall and is the single most visited landmark in Germany. Inside the cathedral there is incredible art work to be seen, such as stained glass windows from the 16th century, a 10th century crucifix and a black altar in marble from the 14th century.
Ludwig Museum exhibits art from the beginning of the 1900s. Set up in 1980 it offers Picasso paintings, Russian Avant-Garde pieces, Warhol, and Roy Lichtenstein. Along with other famous art institutions. The place to visit in Cologne if you love art.
Wallraf-Richartz Museum was created in 1824 when Franz Ferdinand Wallraf brought a tremendous amount of Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Impressionist art to the city. Some of the finest pieces you can have a look at are from the 15th century by the Cologne based artist Stefan Lochner.
Groß St. Martin is a church that has been part of Cologne’s skyline since the 12th century. During WWII it was bombed and the restoration lasted til 1980 to get this majestic piece of Roman architecture back to its original construction. An iconic building in Cologne.
Botanical Garden is next to Cologne Zoo and is an incredible park with over 11 hectares of gardens, lawns and greenhouses sprawling around the glass palace built in the 1860s. A lovely place to wind down and get a nice walk in, in between the touristing.
Hohenzollern Bridge was built in the beginning of 1900s and after the war it was rebuilt to a train and pedestrian bridge. A great way to have a walk over the river and enjoy the amazing view from the bridge.
Christmas Market is something you just can’t miss if you’re visiting in December. Have a piece of chocolate, sip on the glüwein, enjoy a bratwurst and go ice skating in the middle of the city. Doesn’t get more christmas in Germany than that, does it?