10 little-known facts about Cologne

Cologne is a great place to take a German course, with plenty to keep you occupied outside of lessons. Below are ten little known-facts about the city, which we hope will inspire you to visit!

1. Located on the Rhine, Cologne is Germany’s fourth-largest city and one of the oldest cities in the country too.

2. Cologne’s impressive Cathedral is Germany’s second largest religious building. Every year thousands of tourists climb the 509 steps to the top and their efforts are suitably rewarded with a magnificent view of the city and its surroundings. For a while, after its construction in 1880, the cathedral was actually the highest structure in the world.

3. Cologne is known as the city of churches, with 12 large Roman churches located within the medieval city walls.

4. It is home to a museum dedicated entirely to chocolate!

5. Cologne has a top-quality array of cultural attractions. It is home to over 40 museums and more than 110 galleries.

6. Every year in July, Cologne hosts Germany’s largest high-altitude musical firework display – the “Cologne Lights” (“Koelner Lichter”). The impressive display and accompanying party atmosphere attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

7. Cologne has its own beer, which is known as Kölsch. The name Kölsch is protected by law so that only beers brewed in and around Köln can bear the name. It’s a pale, straw-coloured beer that is said to be refreshing and sweeter than other German beers.

8. Cologne is home to one of Europe’s largest Pride events. During the first weekend in July every year, more than half a million participants and visitors come together in Cologne’s city centre to party. Besides having fun, the event does focus on current political issues, which are always expressed through the parade’s theme.

9. According to new rankings, Cologne’s Schildergasse is Germany’s most visited shopping boulevard. Bustling with over 13,280 visitors per hour, it just beat Munich’s “Kaufingerstraße” to the top spot. The whole city is known for its abundance of shops, and is simply a haven for anyone who likes to shop…

10. Cologne was the hometown of Italian expatriate Johann Maria Farina, who created a fragrance and named it after the city. Eau de Cologne or “water from Cologne” is still famous the world over, and is still produced in Cologne today.

Find out more about German courses in Cologne, the rest of Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

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