Welcome to Cologne


Cologne is like a living textbook on history and architecture: drifting about town you’ll stumble upon an ancient Roman wall, medieval churches galore, nondescript postwar buildings, avant-garde structures and a new postmodern quarter right on the Rhine.

Germany’s fourth-largest city was founded by the Romans in 38 BC and given the lofty name Colonia Claudia Ara Aggripinensium. It grew into a major trading centre, a tradition solidified in the Middle Ages and upheld today.


Top experiences in Cologne

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Cologne activities

$12.36 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Cologne Sightseeing Cruise

While cruising down the Rhine River -- Germany's second-largest -- pass some of Cologne’s top attractions, like Cologne Cathedral and the Hohenzollern Bridge (Hohenzollernbrücke), where couples traditionally leave padlocks as a token of their love to one another. See other favorite sights such as Cologne's historic old town and the Cologne Chocolate Museum.Your comfortable sightseeing boat features a spacious sun deck and bar with beverages available for purchase. Admire the city skyline of Cologne while enjoying a freshly tapped glass of Koelsch, the famous local beer (own expense). Learn about Cologne’s interesting 2,000-year history from the informative, onboard audio commentary, and hear interesting stories about Germany’s fourth-largest city.Choose from several departures throughout day, giving you the flexibility to easily fit this tour into your Cologne sightseeing schedule. You can even upgrade to the extended 2-hour nighttime sightseeing cruise, which allows you to admire the city landmarks lit up at night.

$51.10 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Rhine River Cruise: Cologne to Königswinter with Sightseeing

Head to the Cologne riverside in the morning to board your boat. Then, sit back and relax on your 4-hour cruise along the beautiful Rhine River, the longest river in Germany. Enjoy views of the historical towns, hilltop castles and prehistoric fortifications that dot the waterfront while learning about the sights from your onboard guide.Arrive in Königswinter, a resort city at the foot of the densely wooded Siebengebirge hills. Here you have between two and four hours of free time to enjoy lunch if you wish (own expense) and visit the attraction of your choice, as described below. At a prearranged time in the late afternoon or early evening, reboard your boat for a condensed 2.5-hour cruise back to Cologne.Sea Life Aquarium Admission:Get a look at the fascinating underwater world at Sea Life Königswinter, an aquarium home to more than 2,000 animals covering more than 120 species. See local and tropical sea dwellers such as stingrays and seahorses, watch animal feedings and walk through one of Germany’s rare 360-degree underwater glass tunnel to come face-to-face with sharks.Drachnfels Railway Ride:Ride one of Germany's oldest cogwheel railways up to the famous Drachenfels hill and stop at the middle station to admire the Drachenfels Castle ruins. This ancient fortress was built by Archbishop Arnold I of Cologne in the 1100s to protect the Cologne region, but was destroyed during the Thirty Years’ War in 1634 and was never rebuilt. Enjoy views over the Rhine Valley from the summit.

$28.10 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Cologne Hop-On Hop-Off Bus with Rhine River Cruise

With roots dating back to Roman times, Cologne is packed with buildings and monuments that testify to its ancient and medieval past. Add great museums, an impressive postmodern quarter and top-notch shopping and nightlife scenes, and Germany’s fourth-largest city has plenty for sightseers.Armed with your 24-hour ticket (valid from time of first use), board an open-top, double-decker bus to experience Cologne’s top attractions. Your ticket lets you create your own, personalized itinerary and explore at your own pace — simply hop on and off at any of the 16 stops as you wish. See the Itinerary for a full list of stops.Alternatively, stay aboard for the entire 1.5-hour loop and watch Cologne’s top landmarks roll by. Learn about the sights from your English- and German-speaking guide or wear your headphones to hear the audio commentary.Admire top Cologne attractions such as the world-famous Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom) with its towering twin spires, or perhaps leave the bus to stroll through the picturesque Old Town (Altstadt). Alternatively, hop off at the avant-garde Rheinauhafen quarter and visit the fascinating Chocolate Museum (Schokoladen Museum).Your hop-on, hop-off ticket includes a 1-hour round-trip cruise on the Rhine River. Board your comfortable sightseeing boat and see Cologne from the water as you drift along the legendary river. Admire the soaring cathedral, snap photos of the gabled riverfront houses, and pass the Rheinaufen waterfront, famed for its crane towers — three blocks shaped like hoisting cranes — as the informative onboard commentary brings the landmarks to life.The hop-on hop-off buses depart every hour daily from morning to evening, while the sightseeing cruises depart every 90 minutes daily, from morning to evening.

$219.84 Day Trips & Excursions

Cologne Day Trip from Frankfurt

Head north from Frankfurt on a relaxing 2-hour drive to Cologne in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. The old city at the River Rhine is famous for its diverse art scene, vibrant nightlife and the annual Cologne Carnival. On arrival in Cologne, join a double-decker bus sightseeing tour followed by a guided visit of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom). Learn about the history and impressive architecture of the Cologne Cathedral -- one of the largest Gothic churches in Europe -- and see the famous relic of the Shrine of the Magi, often referred to as the Shrine of the Holy Three Kings.Continue your day trip to Cologne's picturesque, historic old town, with its Roman buildings and medieval city walls. Your expert guide will tell you about Cologne's 2,000-year history and introduce you to top Cologne attractions, including the historic Town Hall (Rathaus), as well as the various museums and international art galleries.Enjoy time on your own to sightsee, shop and sample the famous local beer, Koelsch. On your way back to Frankfurt, make a brief stop in the picturesque city of Limburg, where you’ll see the medieval old town, unique timber-framed houses and the beautiful Romanesque Limburg Cathedral.If you choose to visit Cologne in the month before Christmas, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Cologne Christmas Markets! The famous markets feature over 160 festive pavilions selling sweets, local delicacies and art products. No matter what time of year you visit, you’ll enjoy a full day in Germany's fourth largest city and discover its cultural and historical treasures!

$81.89 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Cologne Rhine River Dinner Cruise

During your 3-hour dinner cruise aboard a comfortable boat, enjoy taking in Cologne’s beautiful sights along the Rhine River at night.See top attractions such as Cologne’s historic old town, the University of Cologne and the Chocolate Museum. Admire famous city landmarks lit up against the spectacular evening sky, such as the Hohenzollern Bridge (Hohenzollernbrücke) – where couples traditionally attach padlocks called ‘love locks’ as a declaration – and the Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom) with its silver and blue-lit spires.Choose from regional German dishes at the onboard buffet, and relax as you dine and listen to the DJ’s music selection that will be sure to put you at ease. Enjoy complimentary drinks from the bar, including fresh Koelsch, the famous local beer. After returning to shore, you’re free to stay on board the boat for an additional half hour to finish your drink or just relax!

$39.07 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

KD Rhine Pass from Cologne

Use the pass as a one way ticket to get from one city to another, or maybe you prefer to use it as a return trip to spend a day elsewhere along the river, the choice is yours! Starting from Cologne, you will be able to enjoy the stunning so-called "Siebengebirge".Without committing yourself to a certain route in advance, this pass would also allow you to enjoy the Rhine Valley with its numerous beautiful castles, endless vineyards, the Loreley and much, much more -- starting from Koblenz. This is a fantastic alternative to rail travel, while viewing the Rhine Valley from it's best vantage point - the Rhine itself!The Rhine Pass is valid on all scheduled KD day cruises between Cologne and Linz as well as Koblenz and Mainz, as well as the Moselle between Koblenz and Cochem except special theme cruises and cruises including gastronomic service.For a current timetable, please click 'View Additional Info'.