You can hear and see culture in Cologne, but you can also taste it, feel it, touch it. Alongside the collections with world-famous works of art and historical artefacts, the city boasts a number of museums where visitors can take an active role. There are no limits to the joy of discovery – and there are no age limits either. Let yourself be seduced by culinary delights, test your reactions, solve tricky problems. Museums offer many opportunities for visitors to play an active role and turn their visit into a true experience.
Unforgettable highlights, outstanding athletes, triumphal victories and bitter defeats – original objects and various interactive points illustrate the colourful history and the entire range of emotions in sport from ancient times to the modern age and invite visitors to become active themselves. A timeline visualises the athletic highlights of the last decade with visual installations and original exhibits. In addition, social aspects are addressed, such as the role of Paralympic sport, which has been growing in importance, the fight against doping, depression, and dealing with the pressure to achieve.
For all information on interactive guided tours and team-forming programmes visit: www.sportmuseum.de
Almost everybody loves celebrating it, but why carnival is celebrated at all? Why is there a “Dreigestirn” – a triumvirate – in Cologne? What is carnival all about? The answers can be found in Cologne’s Karnevalmuseum, the biggest of its kind. Many exhibits tell their own story and numerous multimedia points provide a mine of background information for the carnival enthusiast, show curios and answer all questions surrounding the “fifth season”, as carnival is referred to in Cologne. “Kölle Alaaf!” – that’s the carnival battle cry in this city.
We offer a wide range of tours to meet your group requirements – e.g. for staff outings, city breaks or other occasions; contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Discover, explore and be amazed! The Odysseum is a place where you embark on a journey of discovery to experience science at close range. What does it feel like to be weightless? What is behind the secret of beauty? A visit to Cologne’s Odysseum answers these and other questions and provides many light-bulb moments for the entire family. After renovation and conversion works in October 2013, the Odysseum now houses two attractions under one roof – “The Game”, where visitors become players in an interactive game, and “Das Museum mit der Maus” (based on a popular children’s TV programme with a cartoon mouse as its mascot) which was created in cooperation with the WDR broadcasting organisation.
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Situated on the peninsula of the Rheinauhafen next to the Old own and close to the Cathedral, this museum reminiscent of a futuristic ship of glass and aluminium welcomes visitors who can reach it from the Rhine promenade via an old swivel bridge. A tour of the museum’s permanent exhibition on three floors is a time journey illustrating the 3,000 years of the cultural history of chocolate – from the Aztec “food of the gods” to the modern industrial product. The rich palette of themes connected with the past and present of chocolate and cocoa is illustrated in a fascinating way and you are of course welcome to sample our delicious treats.
Cologne and its local brew – Kölsch – go together like a horse and carriage. The Old Town boasts a large number of traditional breweries. Visit some of the most attractive “Kölsche Weetschafften” (brewery cum pub) and experience “Zappes und Köbes” (staff in charge of tapping and serving beer). Peruse a typical Cologne “Foderkaat” (menu) and learn everything worth knowing plus interesting curios about Cologne’s favourite beer. After that, local specialities such as “Halve Hahn”, “Himmel und Äd”, “Kölsch Konvention” or “Kranz und Stange” won’t sound like double Dutch (or rather, double Kölsch) for you any longer.
This relaxed walk explores the sights of Cologne’s Old Town and gives you a wealth of information on the history of eating traditions. Traces of the 2000-year history of this oldest Cologne district are still visible everywhere. Amusing anecdotes make Cologne’s everyday life in past periods come alive – from the Romans and the Franks to the French, the Prussians and the present day. Cologne has always been a melting pot of cultures, which is above all expressed in the way of life of its citizens. There is hardly a better subject to give us an insight into the real life of our ancestors.
Selection of themes: From cocoa beans to chocolate confectionary | The secrets of chocolate | chocolate as an elixir of life | The cult of chocolate All information on deliciously sweet guided tours and events for groups on: www.schokoladenmuseum.de
An Italian living in Cologne created one the most famous perfumes of the world – the Eau de Cologne. The scent reminded him of a spring morning in Italy after the rain, wrote the perfumer Johann Maria Farina in 1709. It is a creation composed of the aromatic oils of orange, lemon, grapefruit, bergamot, citron – the flowers and herbs of his native country. Today, the creation is above all associated with one city – Cologne. It was this very Eau de Cologne, newly created by the perfumer from Italy, which gave Cologne world-fame as the city of perfume as early as the 18th century. Farina’s perfume was soon copied, and as there was no such thing as copyright in the 18th century, an entire category of perfumes is today referred to as Eau de Cologne. The original has been produced by the Farina family for eight generations, and their manufactory, still located opposite Cologne Town Hall, is now a museum of perfume.
AntoniterCity Tours offer spiritual and meditative tours of Cologne. From Cologne’s churches and quiet courtyards to havens of tranquillity and tours under the motto of “water”, the AntoniterCityKirche (church of the Hospital Brothers of St. Anthony) in the city centre offers a wide range of tours off the beaten tourist track for new and unusual views of the city.
Schildergasse 57, 50667 Köln
Today, you have a museum experience of a different kind. At the Deutsches Sport- und Olympiamuseum there are original exhibits from the world of sport and interactive media points. If you feel that you have done enough activities, why not treat yourself to a delicious piece of cake at the café of the neighbouring Schokoladenmuseum where you will enjoy stunning views of the river. The permanent exhibition of this unique museum tells you everything about chocolate and cocoa. Then you proceed to the new Rheinauhafen, a dockland area which has seen the development of the most exciting modern architecture in Cologne. A guided tour gives you interesting information on the buildings including some quaint anecdotes. After such a massive dose of culture you may want to relax, for which Cologne’s numerous baths and wellness temples are the perfect venue.
The Baroque section at the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum has a much to offer the senses – sumptuous still lifes and palatial history paintings provide the visual relish. Titillating stories from the pantheon of Greek and Roman Antiquity add some extra zest. A detour to the Farinahaus with its perfume museum or a visit to 4711 give you additional sensual stimulation. After this excursion into the gallant period you may want something more down to earth. A tour of the world of Cologne’s breweries and their beers is the perfect antidote. Alternatively, you may want to take a closer look at carnival – referred to as the “fifth season” in Cologne. The Cologne Karnevalsmuseum offers a host of stories surrounding the Cologne triumvirate and the 11th of November and other carnival traditions.