Recently I had a chance to travel to Cologne – the city full of heritage and one of the oldest in the country. Although I didn’t have much free time for sightseeing, but still managed to check some interesting sites.
Have no clue why, but I’m intrigued by the etymology of the city name. The history has once again proved that women always get what they want. The town was founded as an outpost of the Roman troops on German soil. Agrippina – the future wife of Claudius, the Roman emperor, was born here and later asked for her home village to be elevated to the status of “colonia” — a city under Roman law. Later it was renamed Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensis, which means “colony of Claudius and the altar of Agrippina”. However, it was later shortened to Colonia Agrippina, then Colony, while locals called the city in their own way – Cologne. There are some miraculously preserved buildings from Roman times that create a memorable architectural flavour of this city.
Today the city confidently supports the reputation of important historical site. Cologne continues to be the largest centre of industry, trade, science and culture, not only in North Rhine-Westphalia, but the whole of Germany. With almost a million residents, the population doubles in size as tourists come to visit this beautiful land.
When you move away from the city centre, you immediately spot the beautiful buildings surrounded by some large parks. I didn’t have a time for a Zoo, but for those of you who are travelling with kids, I strongly recommend visiting it. Everything is easily accessible by public transport, so prepare to spend the whole day here. To me, local cafes are not as attractive as in the centre, so if you plan to spend a day in the park, just prepare your meals in advance.
I have been here a few years ago, visiting museums and some cultural spots. But this time I have decided to please myself with places that attract men from around the world.
Like every German city, Cologne is famous for beer with Kolsch being the most popular. Though it belongs to the group of lager, it still differs. All Kolsch breweries are private, and I’ve been told there are about 70 of them in Cologne alone! This does come as surprise, but each brewery has its own recipe and their manufacturing secrets.
Traditionally the barmen working in breweries are big masculine guys, a little rough, but very proud of their jobs. Yes, working for elite breweries is considered to be a very honourable duty. I have tasted of four or five beers that day, so you can imagine the joy I had visiting Cologne.
And, of course, the trip would not be complete without a visit to Glockengasse No 4711. Everybody who had an opportunity to go to school is familiar with the water of Cologne – the famous perfume known from the early 18th century (you can read the full story here, if interested). To be honest, the scent is rather weird, but I bought a couple of souvenirs for my perfume-addicted friends.
By the late evening I felt hungry. Thanks God, Germany started pay greater attention to nutrition. So these days in Cologne you will be able to find cafes and restaurants that suit all tastes and budgets. I ended up in a small bar that serves traditional pork sausage and cabbage. Amazing!
Basically all I need to do to enjoy the city is to satisfy my appetite!