Cologne is a great city break option for families. With so many attractions to choose from you'll have a hard time fitting it all in. The city has some stand out family-friendly attractions including a chocolate museum, cable car and the amazing Bimmelbahn mini trains.
Read on to find out just how much fun your family could have on a trip to Cologne.
A chocolate lovers paradise
Your kids will absolutely adore the Cologne Chocolate Museum. Learn how chocolate is made, the history of this delicious treat and dip into the golden chocolate fountain to finish. Kids can even go on special chocolate courses to learn how to make their own bars, hollow chocolate figures and ice cream. And after a few hours learning about chocolate you can all relax in the excellent café where hot chocolate and cake is such stuff as dreams are made on.
Meet the animals at Cologne Zoo
This fabulous small zoo is a must for the family. It's easy to reach by metro from the Hauptbahnhof and is packed with interesting things to see and do. In fact this zoo has more animals than any other zoo in Germany and has an aquarium, the largest elephant park in Northern Europe and a free-flight rainforest hall with birds and reptiles.
One of the nicest things about the Cologne Zoo is the spacious, well-kept animal enclosures. The elephant park is especially huge as you'd hope to see for these majestic beasts to roam in. So take your time, relax and enjoy this fabulous animal park with your family.
Cologne cable car
Once you've finished at the zoo you can move straight on to our next attraction – the Cologne cable car. This is a truly amazing way to see the sights of the city spread out below you. You can go from the zoo or the Rhinepark in just a few minutes on this smooth sky ride.
Hop on the Bimmelbahn mini train
Once you're back on solid ground you might want to consider hopping on the Bimmelbahn mini train. This is a really great option for families with young kids or limited mobility. From January to the end of November the Chocolate Express will whisk you to the Shokoladenmuseum. The Zoo Express similarly takes you from the Rhine Promenade down to the zoo and the cable car station.
During Advent the train becomes the Christmas Market Express protecting you from the weather and travelling between the city's four markets at the Cathedral, the Alter Markt, chocolate museum and Neumarkt. Tickets are available at the Cologne Tourist Boards Service Centre and if you have a KölnCard you get a discount.
A family meal in a brewery tavern
When tummies start rumbling there's only one place to go in Cologne for a family feast – the Beer Hall. Your family will love the hearty local dishes, bustling atmosphere and novelty of a meal in the tavern. Try the authentic yet accessible Gaffel am Dom just opposite the cathedral in the main square. Parents can try the signature Kölsch beers served in slim-line glasses and kids will love the potato pancakes and jumbo bratwurst. Menus are in German and English.
For great service, food and rooms, book in at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Cologne. Kids and parents alike will love the comfy bed, free Wi-Fi and good, hearty breakfast – you can even have an omelette made right before your eyes!