Cologne is not only apopular tourist destination but also a centre for media and businesses. Thecity is famous for, Eau de Cologne, a type of fragrance now used the worldover, which was first produced here in 1709. The city is also well known to beone of the most liberal cities in Germany.
Probably the most popular tourist attraction in Cologneis the picturesque Old Town, which although being almost completely reduced torubble during World War II, was painstakingly rebuilt to retain its originalcharacter. The historical centre, where you’ll find the famed AlterMarkt (Old Market), has been painstakingly rebuilt according to itspre-war style, with its famous most famous building, CologneCathedral, receiving a particularly careful restoration. A moremodern attraction, but still one of the oldest examples in Germany, is theCologne Zoo.
Cologne has become amajor cultural centre known for its carnival, celebrated in February.Throughout the year there is plenty to do in the city thanks to the lively artscene, countless galleries and over 30 museums and galleries. The SchnütgenMuseum has an extensive collection of medieval art, housed in a Romanesquechurch from the 11th century. The Museum für Angewandte Kunst (Museum ofApplied Arts) is home to thousands of design objects, from a chair by Mies vander Rohe to a simple retro vacuum cleaner.
If you want to practice German, then Cologne is theideal place. The local population is known for its hospitality. Many peoplespeak English, especially young people, and there are plenty of guided tours inEnglish.
It’s easy to get around in Colognethanks to the efficient and affordable public transport network, consisting oftrams, buses and trains and the ticket machines have an option for English.Another great way to explore the city is by bike, which can be rented on thenorth side of the main train station.