31. 03. 2022

Cologne – metropolis on the Rhine with a great vibe

When the trade fair DACH+HOLZ International opens its doors from 5 to 8 July 2022 in Cologne, lots of trade visitors will flock to the metropolis on the Rhine. Alongside the comprehensive programme of the trade fair, this city with a great vibe has a wide range of attractive leisure activities on offer for visitors.

With more than a million residents, Cologne is not only the fourth largest but also the oldest major city in Germany. Despite its variable history and diverse new buildings, it cannot shake off its Roman past. If you head underground between the City Hall and the Cathedral, between the Rhine and Rudolfplatz, you will find remains of Roman walls, coins and decorative mosaics. Cologne Cathedral is unquestionably the biggest attraction in Cologne and the whole of Germany. Six million people from around the world visit the Gothic cathedral each year. At 157.38 metres tall, the Cathedral Church of St Peter is the second tallest church building in Europe, the third tallest in the world and its street number is 4. Since 2007, there has been another attraction at the cathedral in the form of the window created by world-famous artist Gerhard Richter – an iridescent interplay of coloured squares. In October 2021, scaffolding on the cathedral was taken down and so now, after more than ten years, we once again have a clear view of the western façade.

Culture? Great!

Cologne has more than 40 museums, some of which are deemed world-class. We particularly recommend the Kolumba, Art Museum of the Archdiocese of Cologne (Downtown, Kolumbastraße 4, Wed-Mon 12 noon - 5 pm), designed by Swiss architect Peter Zumthor, as it is extremely impressive even if only seen from the outside. Once inside, visitors will find more than 130 galleries full of the most diverse works spanning all eras of Cologne’s reputation as a metropolis of art and culture. Cologne also has an extremely lively theatre scene. In addition to more than 200 music ensembles, the Kölner Philharmonie concert hall hosts regular musical highlights. Opera and theatre productions plus numerous literary and film events round off the city's broad range of cultural activities. An insider tip for July is the Summerjam Festival, which is held from 1 to 3 July 2022, just before the start of DACH+HOLZ International. This year’s motto “Feel the Beat” represents the festival’s impressive 35 year history. The various generations and nationalities that make up the audience in front of the stage and the musicians on the stage ensure the festival has that unique atmosphere that has made it so famous and popular around the world. Cologne’s Fühlinger See (lake) provides the perfect backdrop to a spectacular show for this special anniversary. Further information and registration available at https://summerjam.de/.

True Cologne beer: Kölsch

Visitors will find a piece of Cologne lifestyle and Kölsch culture in the city’s numerous breweries. The focus here is on Kölsch, a top-fermented beer that is only brewed in Cologne and a word that is also used to describe the local lifestyle and dialect. Kölsch is served by Köbes (waiters) in the typical “Kölsch-Stangen” (tall, narrow beer glasses). The breweries offer traditional dishes that are local, hearty and sometimes a little unconventional – such as Halver Hahn (half a rye bread roll with a thick slice of mature Dutch cheese and mustard) or Himmel un Äd (heaven and earth; mashed potato with apple sauce and fried black sausage). There is also the parody of the dish called Kölscher Kaviar (Cologne caviar), which is basically just a slice of blood sausage with mustard and a small rye bread roll.

The long-established breweries include Brauhaus Sion, founded in 1511, Cölner Hofbräu P. Josef Früh am Dom, Brauerei Päffgen, Malzmühle, dating from 1858, and Schreckenskammer, which is now more than 500 years old, situated right next to the Basilica of St. Ursula. A little further to the west of the city is Cologne's smallest brewery: Braustelle.

In the fresh air

The people of Cologne just love life outdoors. Not only does the metropolis on the Rhine have numerous parks, public gardens and other green spaces, it also has an outdoor restaurant or café on almost every corner. Fans of the great outdoors can walk directly from the exhibition centre to the Rheinpark and visit the Tanzbrunnen live music venue and the Rheinterrassen restaurant with their wonderful view of the skyline of the cathedral and surrounding buildings. Cologne’s most beautiful garden, the Flora, is situated right next to the zoo and offers various horticulturally-inspired facilities. Its festival building, which is also called Flora, is home to “Dank Augusta”, one of Cologne's most beautiful garden restaurants. The Volksgarten park in the south of the city provides an equally successful combination of green space and pleasure. In summer, the park bustles not only with residents of the city's Südstadt district but also with lots of visitors to its Biergarten. Another highlight in the park and party category can be found to the south of the city: the Stadtgarten. Regular outdoor concerts are held at the restaurant also named Stadtgarten, not far from Friesenplatz. Right on the bank of the Rhine and in the grounds of the former Riehler Freibad (open-air pool), mild summer evenings can be spent at the Rhein-Sommergarten swimming pool. Surrounded by a public park, it provides almost 600 seats in the sun and shade, so visitors never have to wait long for a space. It would be impossible to list all the restaurants, bars and cafés providing outdoor seating here. We recommend that you go and explore and try them out for yourself. Or ask a local.

Off into the bustling nightlife

Fans of the eclectic and colourful should head to the Kwartier Latäng, the boozy student mile on Zülpicher Straße. Here you will find a mix of hustle and bustle in the bars and pulsating dance floors in the clubs. With its proximity to the university, it is mainly students who are drawn to this area, though it also attracts fans of noisy city life. Lines of snack and cocktail bars can be found outside Cologne’s "long-standing" cult bars and cool clubs (Neustadt Süd, Zülpicher Str.). Cellar bar Heimathirsch offers local sounds from a German living room-style setting underground. In addition to its interior, this pub is characterised by its wide-ranging live music programme including artists from all around the world (Nippes, Mauenheimer Str. 4). King Georg, which is pronounced just as it is written in German, is of a completely different calibre. As the club for actual and aspiring artists, jazz lovers, night owls, the “Jazz-Bar” puts on live music at least twice a week (Neustadt-Nord, Sudermannstr. 2).

DACH+HOLZ International 2022 will be held from 5 to 8 July at the Cologne Exhibition Centre. Further information are available at https://www.dach-holz.com/en/.

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  • Cologne panorama: View from the KölnTriangle observation deck in the evening (Photo: DieterJacobi / KölnTourismusGmbH)

  • Rheinpark: The 40-hectare Rheinpark stretches between Mülheim and Deutz. In summer, this green oasis is ideal for relaxing on the huge lawns. The Rhine Park is also the location of Cologne's Rhine cable car, which offers every passenger an unforgettable panorama of the Rhine (Photo: City of Cologne)

  • Flora / Botanical Garden Cologne: Cologne's most beautiful living room, the Flora, is located right next to the zoo and presents diverse, horticulturally designed plants and the festival house, also called Flora (Photo: Sven-Erik Tornow, Cologne)

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