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Flights to Cologne

While Berlin may get all the points for being the hip destination of choice when planning a holiday to Germany, those in the know choose the classical elegance of Cologne, whose dreamy church spires, lively beers halls and obsession with chocolate makes it a city not to be missed.

As romantic as Paris or Rome, Cologne’s skyline is dominated by the breathtaking beauty of its famous cathedral. With spires that disappear into the clouds, the French Gothic Kolner Dom is the Everest of cathedrals housing treasures and art of equal magnificence.

The heart and soul of the city is the Aldstadt or Old Town, where classical European architecture comes in a rainbow palette of pastel shades. This liberal city enjoys a drink. With the most breweries in Europe there are many welcoming and bustling beer halls in which to quench the thirst.  Often works of art themselves, some of these exquisite and lively venues date back to the 13th century.

Not just for hedonists, Cologne is a great choice for the whole family. Children and adults alike will love Cologne Zoo – one of the best in the world, with its strange pink pelicans and yellow monkeys. If that weren’t enough there is also Phantasialand, a spectacular theme park dedicated to the younger visitor.

This eclectic city is a daring mix of postmodernism and avant-garde, where post-war buildings sit alongside medieval sculptures and roman walls. Like the city, Cologne’s art scene is astonishing and both traditional and cutting edge, boasting works from Andy Warhol to Picasso. Cologne is a city of carnivals and parades and hearty food from the delectable flammkuchen to the famed bratwurst.  Its museums are just as quirky. Delight the senses with a trip to the House of Fragrances or the sublime Chocolate Museum, which takes pride of place on the majestic river Rhine.

The following information is correct as of January 2015 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.

Fly In

Cologne Bonn Airport is located just 9 miles from the centre of Cologne. The journey time by car is approximately 25 minutes. The S-Bahn and Express ICE Trains provide regular services to and from the city centre direct to the airport. The Express Bus SB60 runs between Central Station and the airport, providing a cheaper mode of transport, taking just 30 minutes. A range of taxi services are also available to hire from outside the airport terminal.

What you need to know

Currency: The Euro (€)

Visas: UK and EU nationals do not require a visa to visit Germany. A passport valid for travel is required by all visitors. Nationals of other countries may require a visa to enter Germany. More information can be obtained from a local embassy or from the Foreign Office website.

Laws: The legal age for consuming and purchasing alcohol in Germany is 18. There is a smoking ban in force across Germany which includes bars, restaurants cafes, public transport and hotels. Some cities, like Berlin, have largely ignored the ban but cities like Cologne are stricter on law breakers.

Best Time to Visit

Much like the rest of Northern Europe, Cologne winters are cold and wet while summer temperatures can get up to 26 degrees or higher, on occasion. Summer is the busiest time to visit Cologne, being the hottetst however May and September still boast warm balmy weather and with fewer crowds.

While winters may be cold they also promise carnivals, like the famous February Karneval and the wonderfully festive Christmas markets that line the city streets. More food and drink events, Romanische Sommer where music and lights illuminate the city’s famous architecture and the musical Jamboree Festival all kick off the summer months. Unity Day, the Cologne Marathon, a comedy festival and women’s film festival ease locals from autumn into winter.

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