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I'm not sure which fairy tale this is, but it looks gruesome: chimney, laundry, chicken

Kolner Weihnachtsmarkt, or Cologne’s Christmas Markets

If you visit only one Christmas market in this part of Europe, make it Cologne’s. When I saw how crowded Cologne’s Christmas markets were, I wasn’t surprised that its four main markets attract over two million visitors a year. Cologne has the best Christmas markets I’ve seen thus far in Europe. The wares were diverse […]

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No, it's still winter here. This image is from my 2008 visit.

St. Maria im Kapitol

This is the largest of the Romanesque churches in Cologne, and an easy one to miss since it’s right across from the Chocolate Museum! St. Maria im Kapitol was constructed in the 11th century and is the second church to stand on this site, over the foundations of a 50 A.D. Roman temple. The first […]

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Cologne St Martin-2

Groß St. Martin

This Romanesque church’s history can be summed as follows: fire, fire, fire, storm, war. It all began back in 960 A.D. when the foundation was laid over remnants of a Roman chapel. Scottish and Irish Benedictines were the main occupants until the 11th century, when local monks began moving in. In 1150, a fire swept […]

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Gaffel Dom 1-1

Gaffel am Dom

This might be even more tourist-ridden than every other Brauhäuser since it’s right across from the Dom, but I don’t care. The Kölsch is satisfying, the food is tasty and the waiters are friendly. What else could you really want?

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Funeral Monument

Römisch-Germanisches Museum der Stadt Köln

Usually archeological finds bore me after about ten minutes, but this museum has just the right amount of items to ooh and ahh at to keep things interesting. The 200 A.D. Dionysos Mosaic is the main draw. A million pieces of limestone, ceramics and glass covering 70 square meters originally adorned the banqueting hall of […]

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Cologne Choco 1-1

Schokoladenmuseum Köln

The Imhoff-Stollwerck-Museum is the place to go if you love chocolate. Not only can you see how chocolate is made, you can’t take a step without a kind, kind employee sticking a sample in your face. The ground-floor exhibition, including a tiny rain forest-like garden, teaches viewers the history of chocolate through the past 3,000 […]

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Brauhaus Sünner im Walfisch

Did I say Kölsch only comes in 0.2 liter glasses? I forgot to tell you about Brauhaus Sünner im Walfisch, where patrons can order 3 or 5 liters at a time. Just make room on your table for the tall glass tube with the tap at the bottom. Since there were only two of us, […]

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Cologne Dom-2

Cologne Dom

This massive Gothic cathedral can be seen from all points in Cologne. The first time I saw it was out a plane’s window, from which it looks truly unbelievable. For about five minutes, the 157-meter spires made this the tallest structure in the world. Then, the Eiffel Tower surpassed it. The Dom has an interesting […]

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Päffgen (est. 1883) is the smallest brewery in Cologne and produces an exceptionally good Kölsch. Its product is slightly hoppier than the other traditional Hausbrauereis, and the bottomless service is just as efficient. We accumulated ten hash marks in under an hour, before peeling ourselves away to visit the next beer hall on our list. […]

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Museum Ludwig

Museum Ludwig satisfactorily provides all the modern art –isms under one roof: realism, surrealism, nouveau réalisme, abstract expressionism. The Ludwig has the third largest Picasso collection in the world, after Paris and Barcelona, and an impressive collection of American artists. You’ll see some of the more famous Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Jasper Johns pieces […]

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