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Cologne Old Town (Altstadt) Tours

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Cologne Old Town (Altstadt)
Stretching along the west bank of the Rhine River and presided over by the UNESCO-listed Cologne Cathedral, the Old Town (Altstadt) is both the navigational and historical heart of Cologne. With its colorful old buildings, beautiful Romanesque churches, and scenic riverside promenades, it’s an obvious starting point for any exploration of the city.

The Basics
No Cologne sightseeing tour is complete without a visit to Old Town landmarks like the Cologne Cathedral, the Town Hall, and the Hohenzollern Bridge. Join a walking tour and learn more about the city’s history from your tour guide; admire the views on a cruise along the Rhine River; or explore independently on a hop-on hop-off bus tour. 

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Cologne’s main Visitor Information Center is located outside the cathedral in the Old Town.
  • There are free Wi-Fi spots located around the Old Town.
  • Most of the attractions in the Old Town are wheelchair accessible, but some of the narrow cobbled streets might be tricky to navigate. 

How to Get There
Most of Cologne’s main attractions, hotels, and restaurants are located in or around the Old Town, so it’s impossible to miss the neighborhood. The main Köln Hauptbahnhof train station sits just north of the cathedral. From the cathedral, trams run to nearby sights such as the Rheinauhafen and the Chocolate Museum.
 
When to Get There
Whether you visit during the day as part of a city tour or after dark to drink or dine along the riverfront,  Cologne’s historic center is lively at all hours. The busiest time to visit is during the peak summer months (July and August), when attractions like the cathedral can get busy; get an early start if you want to escape the crowds. Alternatively, Cologne is at its most atmospheric during the annual Carnival or over the winter holidays, when the Old Town hosts some of Germany’s best Christmas markets. 

A walking tour of Cologne Old Town
Start your walking tour outside the magnificent Cologne Cathedral, then head to the riverfront to see the Hohenzollern Bridge and stroll along the waterfront. Stop to see Museum Ludwig and Great St. Martin’s Church, then head west to the Alter Market, where you can visit a traditional brauhaus (brew-pub) to sample a Kolsch beer. Continue to the Neumarkt, one of the main shopping centers, stopping along the way to see the Heinzelmännchen fountain and the Tünnes and Schäl statues, then visit the Farina Museum to learn more about Cologne’s perfume-making history. 
Address: Germany
Admission: Free
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10 Tours and Activities to Experience Cologne Old Town (Altstadt)

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Cologne Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour and Rhine River Sightseeing Cruise

Cologne Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour and Rhine River Sightseeing Cruise

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Explore the best of Cologne on this narrated, hop-on hop-off, double-decker bus tour. Visit many of Cologne’s top attractions—like Cologne Cathedral and Cologne City Hall, plus visit the Old Town district, bustling Roncalliplatz, the historic Alter Markt square and much more. Select the 1-day pass, then board at any of the 16 stops and get to know this landmark of High Gothic architecture in customized fashion, with live onboard commentary in English and German. Audio guides in nine languages also available. A Rhine River sightseeing cruise is also included.
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  • 1 day
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$29.84
From
$29.84
Taking safety measures

Cologne City Tour Experience cathedral city on the Rhine

Cologne City Tour Experience cathedral city on the Rhine

star-5
DISCOVER UNKNOWN DETAILS OF COLOGNE Welcome to an interesting and exciting journey through 2000 years of city history - from the Roman city foundation (CCAA) Colonia to "Kölle" to today's Cologne. Discover on this special Cologne CITY TOUR not only the already obvious, but especially for visitors Cologne rather hidden and thus less known attractions of the internationally famous Rhine metropolis. "Unknown details": Experience has shown that many tour visitors - even if they live and / or work in and around Cologne - have come to know many new, previously unknown, fascinating backgrounds, places and details of Cologne on our tours ... Learn the The popular, cosmopolitan city of the cathedral can be known to us in a different way by discovering surprising and unexpected details that are only really known to a few people at the KÖLN-CITY TOUR.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$30.36
From
$30.36
Taking safety measures

Cologne night tour

Cologne night tour "Torch tour alternative night watchman"

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UNIQUE NIGHT GUIDED TOUR IN COLOGNE: THE IDEAL MIX OF ENTERTAINMENT & KNOWLEDGE Your special night experience on the weekend! You can expect an atmospheric and really extraordinary nightly torch tour with the legendary Till of Cologne: When the sun goes down and sinks in the Rhine, the nocturnal Cologne awakens to new life and shows its other side for the guests of the TILL NIGHT GUIDANCE. In the magic of the night, reinforced by the moonshine, sometimes forgotten history and people come to life. The legendary TILL takes you on nocturnal paths through winding streets and hidden corners of the city. You wander with him through past centuries from Colonia to Kölle back to today's Cologne. TILL will illuminate your path with his torch, so you can see hidden and undiscovered even in the dark.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$30.36
From
$30.36
Taking safety measures

Private walking tour of Cologne's old town

Private walking tour of Cologne's old town

During the tour you will learn something about the history of the second oldest city in Germany, e.g. why a Roman empress absolutely wanted to give the city its name, why it took so long until the cathedral was finished, why all the waiters in Cologne have the same name, what we found right in front of the town hall, why the Schmitz family has a monument here has and much more. Everything is presented in an entertaining manner, with a wink and typical Cologne humor.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$66.98
per group
From
$66.98
per group
Taking safety measures

Private Cologne Ghost Tour: Haunted City Center Exploration Game

Private Cologne Ghost Tour: Haunted City Center Exploration Game

star-4
Embark on a quest around Cologne by solving clues that will take you to the most haunted places in the city, all with the help of your smartphone. Unlock new stories as you discover on your own Cologne Cathedral, Domplatte, the historic Old Town, and more. + Discover the most haunted streets, villas, and squares in the city + Find out the horror stories of the people who used to live there + Solve clues on your phone while you visit the haunted Cologne You are invited to discover the captive souls, the spirits and the mysterious skeletons of Cologne with an interactive city exploration app. Each clue will lead you from one place to another, giving you exact directions, so you won’t need a map, a GPS or a guide. When you solve it and guess the answer, the secret story of that place is unlocked. Along the way, you’ll find horror stories that will give you the chills. Dare you go on this tour?
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$6.08
Price varies by group size
From
$6.08
Price varies by group size

Cologne City Tour

Cologne City Tour "Domstadt Experience" Exclusive tour for up to 12 people

THE absolutely unique, very special community experience with an exclusive tour guide. THE highlight for e.g. Company outings, family celebrations, birthday party, bachelor party, ... THE unusual, exclusive idea for a unique group experience in Cologne SPECIAL for you: THE individual group tour through the cathedral city THE LEGENDARY SCARF LEADS YOU AS A GROUP EXCLUSIVELY THROUGH KÖLLE (COLOGNE) ... Treat yourself as a closed group to a special, exclusive experience in the community: TILL will take you on a tour of the cathedral city, which is also designed to meet your individual needs. Do not miss it, in this way to create a unique community experience in the group. No matter whether you are a private group or e.g. book a TILL GROUP TOUR with SDS CITY TOURS as a special experience for companies: it will definitely be something very special, unique and therefore exclusive.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$238.90
per group
From
$238.90
per group
Taking safety measures

1 hour limousine sightseeing ride in Cologne

1 hour limousine sightseeing ride in Cologne

Star Limos Limousine Service Germany offers Limousines, Stretchlimousines, Partybuses and Classic Cars with driver in the region Cologne, Bonn, Duesseldorf, Aachen, Siegburg and Ruhr district. International Airport Codes: DUS, CGN Sedan and Limousine Service.
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  • 1 hour
From
$360.63
per group
From
$360.63
per group

Private Tour: Cologne City Highlights

Private Tour: Cologne City Highlights

Visit beautiful Cologne on this private, guided sightseeing tour, great for those with limited time in the city. Enjoy personalized attention while learning about the history of the city, a landmark of High Gothic architecture set amidst the reconstructed Old Town. See the Cologne Cathedral and the Romanesque Catholic Great St. Martin Church, plus visit bustling Roncalliplatz, the historic Alter Markt square and much more. Cologne hotel pickup and drop-off are included.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$304.48
Price varies by group size
From
$304.48
Price varies by group size

City tour and photo tour in Cologne on the Rhine

City tour and photo tour in Cologne on the Rhine

With this tour you will get an interesting, summarized and targeted performance of the cathedral city of Cologne. Our tour guide will get to know you with the most important sights in the city center and make your tour informative and interesting. But the most important thing is, you no longer need a camera with a selfie stick, we take care of a number of professional photos that will immortalize your Cologne trip.
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  • 3 to 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$48.72
Price varies by group size
From
$48.72
Price varies by group size

Old town walk in a small group through Cologne

Old town walk in a small group through Cologne

During the tour you will learn something about the history of the second oldest city in Germany, e.g. why a Roman empress absolutely wanted to give the city its name, why it took so long until the cathedral was finished, why all the waiters in Cologne have the same name, what we found right in front of the town hall, why the Schmitz family has a monument here has and much more. Everything is presented in an entertaining manner, with a wink and typical Cologne humor.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$12.18
From
$12.18
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Cologne Old Town (Altstadt)?