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Neuschwanstein Castle

I travelled to Cologne from Copenhagen, Denmark. I liked this city because have a lot of life. There are a lot of people walking around the street, a lot of bars. Also the river walk is so beautiful and of course the Cathedral. I can remember that all the cabs are Mercedes thing that surprise me.

Cologne is Germany's fourth-largest city after Berlin, Hamburg and Munich, and is the largest city both in the German Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and within the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Area, one of the major European metropolitan areas with more than ten million inhabitants. It is one of the oldest cities in Germany, having been founded by the Romans in the year 38 BC. Cologne was granted the status of a Roman "city" in the year 50 AD.

Cologne lies on the River Rhine. The city's famous Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom) is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Cologne. The University of Cologne (Universität zu Köln) is one of Europe's oldest universities.

Cologne is a major cultural centre of the Rhineland and has a vibrant arts scene. Cologne is home to more than 30 museums and hundreds of galleries. Exhibitions range from local ancient Roman archaeological sites to contemporary graphics and sculpture. The city's Trade Fair Grounds are host to a number of trade shows such as the Art Cologne Fair, the International Furniture Fair (IMM) and the Photokina. Cologne is also well known for its celebration of Cologne Carnival and the LGBT festival Christopher Street Day (CSD).

Within Germany, Cologne is known as an important media centre. Several radio and television stations, including Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR), RTL and VOX (TV channel), are based in the city. The city also hosts the Cologne Comedy Festival, which is considered to be the largest comedy festival in mainland Europe.

In 2005 Cologne hosted the 20th Roman Catholic World Youth Day with Pope Benedict XVI. It was one of the largest-ever meetings, with over a million participants.

Places to visit:

• Cologne Cathedral (German: Kölner Dom) is the city's famous landmark and unofficial symbol. It is a Gothic church, started in 1248, and completed in 1880. In 1996, it was designated a World Heritage site; it claims to house the relics of the Three Magi. It is interesting to note that the residents of Cologne call the cathedral "the eternal construction site". They predict that, by the time the renovation of the building has finished, the end of the world will be upon us!
• Twelve Romanesque Churches: These buildings are outstanding examples of medieval sacral architecture. The roots of some of the churches date back as far as Roman times, like St. Gereon, which originally was a chapel on a Roman graveyard. With the exception of St. Maria Lyskirchen all of these churches were very badly damaged during World War II. Reconstruction was only finished in the 1990s.
• Cologne University, with approx. 44,000 students as of 2005, is the largest university in Germany.
• Fragrance Museum Farina House, the birthplace of Eau de Cologne.
• Römisch-Germanisches Museum (English: Roman-Germanic Museum) for ancient Roman and Germanic culture.
• Wallraf-Richartz Museum for mediaeval art.
• Museum Ludwig for modern art.
• EL-DE Haus, the former local headquarters of the Gestapo houses a museum documenting the Nazi rule in Cologne with a special focus on the persecution of political dissenters and minorities.
• Kölner Philharmonie - the Cologne Philharmonic Orchestra Building housing both the Gürzenich Orchestra and the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne.
• RheinEnergieStadion, the major Cologne stadium, primarily used for football games, seating 50,997 visitors in national games and 46,134 in international games, home to the local 2. Bundesliga team, 1.FC Köln.
• Kölnarena, a multifunctional event hall, home to the local ice hockey team, the Kölner Haie (English: Cologne Sharks).
• Kölnturm (English: Cologne Tower), Cologne's second tallest building at 165.48 metres (542.91 ft) in height, second only to the Colonius (266 m/873 ft).
• Colonius - a telecommunication tower with an observation deck (closed since 1992).
• Colonia-Hochhaus - Germany's tallest residential building.
• Köln Triangle Tower - opposite the cathedral with a 103 m (338 ft) high viewing platform - in contrast to the cathedral with an elevator and a view with the cathedral over the Rhine.
• Hansa-Hochhaus - designed by architect Jakob Koerfer and completed in 1925, it was at one time Europe's tallest office building.
• Rheinseilbahn - an aerial tramway crossing the Rhine.
• Messe Köln (English: Cologne Fair). Exhibition area of 100,000 m² (1,076,000 sq ft).
• Messeturm Köln (English: Exhibition Tower Cologne).
• Hohe Strasse (English: High Street) is one of the main shopping areas and extends past the cathedral in an approximately southerly direction. This street is particularly popular with tourists and contains many gift shops, clothing stores, fast food restaurants and electronic goods dealers.
• Ford Motor Company plants, assembling the Ford Fiesta and Ford Fusion as well as manufacturing engines and parts; headquarters for Ford of Europe.
• The Panasonic Toyota Racing Formula One team has its factory in the city.
• Schildergasse - extends the shopping area of Hohe Strasse to the west ending at Neumarkt.
• Ehrenstrasse - the shopping area around Apostelnstrasse, Ehrenstrasse, and Rudolfplatz is a little more on the eccentric and stylish side.
• Historic Ringe boulevards (such as Hohenzollernring, Kaiser-Wilhelm-Ring, Hansaring) with their medieval city gates (such as Hahnentorburg on Rudolfplatz) are also known for their night life.
• German Sports & Olympic Museum, with exhibitions about sports from antiquity until the present.
• Schokoladenmuseum (Chocolatemuseum) officially called Imhoff-Schokoladen-Museum.
• JavaMuseum - Forum for Internet Technology in Contemporary Art - collections of Internet based art, corporate part of (NewMediaArtProjectNetwork):cologne - the experimental platform for art and New Media.

July 2003

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