Cologne Attractions Guide

Here is a list of the must-see places in Cologne: 1. Dom. Also known as Cologne Cathedral, Dom’s construction started in 1248 and was only completed 632 years later. The architecture is strictly Gothic wherein both the interiors and exterior façade are lavishly decorated with carved stone, marble and precious metals. The Dom is also said to contain relics from the Three Magi who visited Christ the child in the manger, and is the current seat of the Archbishop of Cologne. Because of its long history and near mint condition, UNESCO has deemed the cathedral as a World Heritage Site. The architecture sits smack in the midpoint of Domkloster (street,) and is usually the first huge landmark you will see once you enter the city proper. 2. Chocolate Factory and Chocolate Museum. The Stollwerck Chocolate Factory is a good place to head on down if you want to see first hand how the dark confections are mixed molded and packaged. This can become a great educational trip especially if you have young children with you. After that, you can simply walk a few feet away towards the Chocolate Museum on Am Schokoladenmuseum. Aside from the extensive and impressive chocolate art creations, visitors are also treated to several displays of chocolate wrappers and packaging. Fortunately enough, the eating establishments and snack bars in the area offer good quality chocolates, pralines and other sweetened confections to those who suddenly find themselves suffering from a bout of sweet tooth. 3. Borough Market and the Smithfield Market. Your shopping experience in Cologne will not be complete without having a long and leisurely stopover at these two aforementioned markets. Aside from all the gastronomical delights, local brews and traditional snacks lining most streets, you can also find the best bargains here in terms of souvenirs, clothing and what-have-you. However, when the winter season pushes in, the Borough Market literally becomes a Christmas market that offers nothing else but Christmas inspired food items and seasonally themed goods. 4. Rhine. The River Rhine is not only a pristine stretch of water. There are river cruises and cable car tours available here that allows people to see the length of the city either from the water’s edge or from an aerial point of view. Some tours include stopovers at great restaurants, while others take their guests to the shopping areas near the river. 5. The Invisible Bar. Unsichtbar or the Invisible Bar should be on your gastronomical itinerary. This is an eating establishment that serves their diners great tasting food… in the dark. Diners get to choose their meals at the entrance room and are then ushered in into a darkened room to eat. Proceeds of the meal are donated to the city’s blind and handicapped charities. 6. Local breweries. October is the best time to make the rounds of the local taverns as well as the beer breweries and wineries of the city. The best places to sample the best alcoholic beverages are the: Brauhaus Putz, Friesenstrasse, Früh Kölsch brewery, and Heller’s Brauhaus.