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Overview to Cologne: Travel Guide and Tourist Information

The Cityscape

Although it sits in the Rhineland at the heart of industrial Germany, work definitely doesn't take precedent over play in Cologne. Having been extensively rebuilt following its destruction in the Second World War, it's now one of the country’s more energetic cities.

The Dom Cathedral - one of the few things to survive the bombings - is by far and away the city's main attraction. It took six centuries to build and its gigantic Gothic façade hides a cavernous interior. The tower offers 509 steps up to one of the best views of any city in Europe.

Next to the Dom is a massive square and two very fine museums. The Museum Ludwig houses a big-name display of abstract, cubist and contempo-pop art. Across the road, the Roman Germanic Museum offers a more somber, archeologically educative experience.

Cologne is, in fact, inundated with museums and galleries - there are well over 100 in total. House 4711 and Schokoladen Museum are two of particular note which share fountains as a common theme; the first runs with scented eau de cologne, the second with pure, melted chocolate!

Luckily, Cologne also has the perfect antidote to its cultural excesses; hundreds of drinking places, and great tasting beer. The people of the city are famous for their hospitality and the cool aromatic bitter they serve (named 'Kolsch') is just as welcoming.

Daytime drinking in the Altstadt (Old Town) around the river typically runs into the latter hours of the evening. Next, travelers can head westwards towards the Hohenstaufenring and Hohenzollernring where students go, congregating mainly around the Zulpicher Plaza.

And they, like the majority of residents in Cologne, will show you a really good time. Try to experience this enthralling city from a local’s perspective… although in a place as friendly as Cologne, you may not have to try as hard as you think.

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