Cologne Zoo was founded in 1860 and is one of the oldest - yet also one of the most modern - zoological gardens. In no other zoo the development of the zoological gardens over the years can be seen so clearly: the buildings starting from the menagerie of the 19th century to the wildlife reserve of the 21st century, from the Moorish-style elephant house and the former birdhouse in the style of a Russian basilica dating back to the 19th century, to the ape island created in a Hagenbeck style and modern natural worlds such as the rain forest.
Since the big cat enclosure opened, designed as a biotope habitat, visitors to Cologne Zoo have been able to view the animals in glass-fronted enclosures without bars. The conversion of the old birdhouse into the South America house for primates shows that tradition and progress must by no means be mutually exclusive. The modern elephant park provides the zoo's elephants with the most space north of the Alps.
Cologne Zoo is also famous for its primate collection. The zoo has around 500 different species of animal from all the world's continents and oceans, including predators as well as the magnificent aquarium with a terrarium and insectarium.
Roy Lichtenstein's M-Maybe, Andy Warhol's Brillo Boxes and George Segal's Restaurant Window, all icons of American Pop Art, had all just been completed when in 1969 they arrived as a loan at Wallraf-Richartz-Museum.
The Cathedral is still the second highest building in Cologne after the telecommunications tower. Its footprint is no less impressive, with the full length of the Cathedral measuring 145 m and the cross nave 86 m.
Arnsberg's historic heartbeats at the Old Market Square with its belfry, Old Town Hall (1710), "The Crimea" and Maximilianbrunnen (1779).
The Madonna in the niche at the town hall has survived many city fires and bears witness to an eventful history. On the side of the town hall is the symbol of Cologne rule in Arnsberg. The wonderfully renovated patrician building "Zur Krim" is reminiscent of a dark chapter in legal history, because the witch judge of Arnsberg once lived in it.
The bell tower - the symbol of the city - forms the "parlor" Arnsberg with the old town hall (1710) and the Maximilianbrunnen, framed by patrician and half-timbered houses. The bell tower was part of the former city fortifications in Arnsberg and is one of the oldest buildings in Arnsberg. He found a first written mention in a document by Count Gottfried III. from the year 1236, in which it was about the expansion of the city area towards the monastery Wedinghausen. With the execution of this plan, the tower lost its function as a defensive tower and served only as an inner-city gate. For centuries, the top of the tower consisted of a tent-like roof with four small corner towers. It was only around 1723 that the tower received its baroque onion dome after a city fire, which was preserved until 1945.
At that time, the opinions of contemporaries about the new theater building differed widely. The Schauspielhaus, created by the Düsseldorf architect Bernhard Pfau, was one of the last major theatrical buildings of the postwar period.
The history of the North Rhine-Westphalia Art Collection began in 1960 when the state government acquired a collection of 88 works by the painter Paul Klee. The Klee collection is the foundation of the "Foundation Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen" founded by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia in 1961.
If you like it tranquil, treat yourself and your family to a boat trip over one or more lakes in the Eifel Lake District and enjoy the beautiful landscape from the water.
Four passenger ships with their crews provide the framework for a few pleasant hours in the Eifel. With the RURSEE-BAHN you can take a one-hour tour to the nearby spa town of Heimbach. During this romantic drive over Hasenfeld, through the town of Heimbach, along the castle, the small reservoir, the art nouveau power plant and adjacent national park, you will learn about these sights.
Woods, water, wilderness - the only National Park in North Rhine-Westfalia is worth exploring with a ranger.
The Eifel National Park extends over an area of approx. 110 square kilometres in the middle of the Hohes Venn Eifel nature park. The large protected area offers almost entirely undisturbed living space for wild cats and black storks, among other animals. In the early summer, the yellow broom flowers turn the Eifel National Park golden.
Kornelimünster is located in the Inde valley, and is Aachen’s most picturesque district. The historic centre, which surrounds the Medieval priory church, St. Kornelius, has remained almost entirely intact today, and invites visitors to walk around and spend a few hours there.
As well as its wonderful, historic town centre, Kornelimünster is also a good starting point for a large number of expeditions to the surrounding area. Whether you prefer leisurely cycling on the Vennbahn track, mountain bike tours or hiking on the Eifelsteig – here, there’s something for everyone.
Experience the natural power of the Bad Aachener mineral-thermal water.
The Carolus Thermen has continued this tradition in the best sense and offers a bathing world without compare in a beautifully designed thermal area. Let the natural power of the healing thermal water fill your senses and experience moments of complete wellbeing.
Eight indoor and outdoor pools of various temperatures with many different attractions, the unique brine steam bath “Strokkur”, a beautiful sun terrace and our wonderful Carolus Beach create the perfect ambience to switch off completely and gather new strength.
Located between the Puppenbrunnen, the city hall and the Bahkauv, the Hof square has something to offer everyone, and is a good place to spend a few hours with its restaurants, bars and cafés. Take a break here, lean back and take it easy, Aachen-style.
Starting from the Hof, walk down the Medieval-style Körbergasse, past the traditionalist Plum’s Kaffee coffee roasting house and the basket weaver’s “Korb Bayer”, which first opened its doors in 1865, until you reach a symbol of the city: the “Printenmädchen”, or “little gingerbread girl”. Now enter Aachen’s oldest coffee shop, the Alt Aachener Café-Stuben van den Daele, which was founded in 1890. The rooms, which are full of nooks and crannies, and the many stairs in this historic building, give the café its particular charm.
The historic façade is already an indication of the building’s glorious history: 50 rulers, 31 of whom were crowned in Aachen, surround the central figures of Charlemagne, the Holy Mary and Pope Leo III. In the elaborately decorated rooms, too, the story of the city hall, which was built on the historic site of the great palace hall of Emperor Charlemagne, is brought to life. In the coronation hall, where formerly the rulers took a meal after being crowned, copies of the imperial regalia remind us of this glorious era today.
Charlemagne intended his Church of St. Mary to become a complete image of the Heavenly Jerusalem, symbolizing the contact of the Earthly and the Heavenly. After app. 20 years of construction this vision was architecturally and liturgically realized around the year 803. The significance of the church arises from its 1200year old history: burial place of Charlemagne, coronation church for the Roman-German kings and Pilgrimage Church attracting the faithful from all over the world every seven years.
Charlemagne's palace, the era of coronations and the tradition of pilgrimages have produced an unique and magnificent church treasure whose most famous pieces are on show today in the Cathedral Treasury. The oldest piece is a Roman sarcophagus which portrays a scene from ancient mythology, and in which Charlemagne was initially buried. From Charlemagne's palatine school in Aachen comes a book cover carved from ivory and showing scenes from the story of Christ's resurrection. According to medieval legend, several other pieces of the Cathedral treasure belonged to Charlemagne himself, one of them a hunting horn fashioned from the tusk of an elephant.
Vibrant activities within ancient walls, a medieval townscape with idyllic half-timbered houses, narrow streets and cobblestones.
Monschau is the cultural centre of an entire region and one of the most popular holiday and excursion destinations in the Eifel.
More than 350 kilometres of signposted trails to the right and the left of the Eifelsteig will lead you through paths of adventure, e.g., along the imposing beech hedges, to the blooming narcissi meadows and up through the Hohe Venn (High Fens), a raised bog that is absolutely unique in its kind within Europe.
A little bit further from the city you can discover the largest and most exciting labyrinth in the Netherlands and much more. You try to reach the green heart. Wandering the way to the center. But watch out for the spontaneously spraying water walls!
In addition to the unique entrance building with a giant butterfly-shaped roof, a water playground with dozens of fountains has been laid out. This is beautiful to look at, fun to walk through and play with!
Chris de Burgh is not the only one who considers Westfalenhalle,the best place in the world to make music, The unparalleled atmosphere of this listed historical domed building with a U on the roof is legendary. Around 250 events take place on its stage each year.
This former high-rise plant built by the Union Brewery is now a centre for art and creativity. One of the city’s most popular landmarks, it will be transformed by 20th and 21st century art, research, education and media art into a unique innovation centre as of May 2010.
The Football Museum is embedded in Dortmund's art and culture mile, which includes the Dortmunder U, the Harenberg City Center, the RWE Tower, the Museum of Art and Cultural
History and the City and Regional Library.
The High Fens-Eifel Nature Park in eastern Belgium is doubtless one of the most beautiful regions in the country. At 72,000 hectares it is also one of the largest and most emblematic nature parks in Wallonia.
With its moorlands and peat bogs, forests and streams, man-made reservoirs, and picturesque villages, the High Fens-Eifel Nature Park offers an amazing palette of landscapes worthy of the most beautiful picture postcards less than an hour from Liège.
The establishment of the Teutonic Order at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle in 1216 gave this historic site its name, the “Deutsches Eck” (“German Corner”). Koblenz also owes its name to the meeting point of the Rhine and the Moselle - from “Castellum apud Confluentes”, Latin for “fort at the confluence”, which over time became the current name of Koblenz.
Located not far from the Electoral Palace, the Koblenz Theatre is one of the only surviving examples of classical theatre construction on the Middle Rhine, and is the earliest example of a gallery theatre in Germany (as opposed to the earlier box theatre).
The Electoral Palace in Koblenz is one of the most important palatial buildings in the French early Classicism style in south-western Germany, and is one of the last residential palaces that was built in Germany shortly before the French revolution.
The best-known market in Maastricht is the one held on the square of the same name, Markt. Surrounding by stately mansions and the imposing city hall, Maastricht’s main market is set up here every Wednesday and Friday.
In one of the highest spots in Holland, miles of tunnels make for a unique experience. A tour beneath Saint Peter’s Mount near Maastricht allows you to explore the caves that were excavated by men through the centuries.
Saint Peter’s Fortress was built on St. Peter’s Mount in the early 18th century. It’s initial purpose was military, allowing the people of Maastricht to defend the city from the French. While successful for a long time, the city had to surrender in the end.
The Museum of Laundry, in the old part of the city, offers you a journey through the history of soap, laundry and the living and working conditions of laundresses in Spa.
Some twenty rooms tell you how women - and sometimes men - did the laundry from antiquity to the present day. You can admire the first wooden washing machines, discover the products used before the invention of soap, see amazing machines working... and learn how soap was invented and which processes were found to whiten linen.
Nestled at the heart of the forests near Spa, by the Fagne de Malchamps, this estate opens its spaces to the public: a panoramic tower, a tree planted park with a pond and picnic area. It is also home to the Musée de la Forêt et des Eaux and to the CRIE.
Le Domaine de Bérinzenne, with its tree-shaded alleys and exceptional views of the region, is a pure invite to relax and dream. From the top of the tower, visitors can see the Fagne, sometimes all the way to the horizon, bathed in sunshine or quite mysterious partly wrapped in mist.
The pleasant Maison de la Nature et de la Forêt (open weekdays) provides information on the region, documentation on the local hikes and features: a nature shop, temporary exhibitions and cafeteria.
Since September 16, 2018, the Sauerland Museum has reopened after years of construction. In its historic building from 1803 it is completely renovated and barrier-free, because the individual levels can be reached by elevator.
Before the new building with the August Macke special exhibition opens in September 2019, the focus will first be on the permanent exhibition on the history of the Duchy of Westphalia. Prepared in a contemporary manner and shown in attractive themed rooms, museum visitors can comfortably move through the exhibition with an audio guide.
Discovering 7000 years of art and history!
What is the Grand Curtius Museum? This museum contains more than 7000 years of regional and international artefacts and more than 5200 items displayed in chronological or thematic order. You also can find prestigious collections from the archaeology, decorative arts, religious art and Mosan arts, as well as the weaponry and glass.
The Grand Curtius located in the historical heart of the Ardent City, the Grand Curtius offers a fresh perspective of the city, houses gardens and a cafeteria that are open all year round.