Things to Do in Rhine River - page 2
An indoor playground for families with younger LEGO®-obsessed kids, LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre Oberhausen lets you unleash your creativity with more than 4 million LEGO bricks. Smaller in scale than a full LEGOLAND, this center has several play areas, a 4D cinema, and a couple of rides for the youngest visitors.
Step into the sensory world of Giovanni Maria Farina, the legendary Italian perfumer who created the original eau de cologne in 1709. The Farina Fragrance Museum chronicles the rise of the family’s perfume dynasty in Cologne and offers a fascinating insight into perfume-making throughout the centuries.
As the only German castle to have survived the turbulence of the last 800 years without being destroyed, Marksburg sits on the banks of the Rhine near its confluence with the River Moselle.
Built in medieval style with a vast central tower, it is less ornate and less flamboyant than many of its fanciful near neighbors such as Reichsburg Cochem, as it was built for protective purposes rather than as a private residence.
The castle was already 300 years old when it was further fortified and converted into a defense tower in the 15th century to protect the town of Braubach from attack. The castle has survived troubled times and has lived many different lives; for a while in Napoleonic times it was a prison, but today its future is safely conserved as the headquarters of the German Castle Association.
Tours of Marksburg take in the fortifications, drawbridges and battery as well as the vast, vaulted ceremonial chambers, armory and stables, which in a former incarnation doubled as a torture chamber.
The winemaking town of Rüdesheim am Rhein sits on the eastern banks of the Rhine and is the region’s second-largest visitor attraction after Cologne Cathedral. It owes its popularity to the little cobbled alleyway of Drosselgasse, which is a mecca of stores, bars and restaurants dedicated to all things German.
Although it’s only 490 feet (150 m) long, this mini-street runs between Oberstrasse and the banks of the Rhine, attracting tourists in their millions to enjoy its half-timbered wooden architecture, with balconies and galleries intricately carved and wreathed in garlands. Sadly, it isn't all original; although some buildings date back to the 15th century, most of the street was rebuilt after World War II. This does not ruin the spectacle and fun of it all, however.
Asbach Brandy and the strong Rudesheimer coffee that accompanies it are just two of the local treats to sample, and nearly all the cafés sell typical Rhineland gourmet specialties such as apple strudel and the cheesy pasta dish Kasespatzle. Wine bars serve up the region’s trademark young pinots and sharp rieslings; the wait staff at the bierkellers flourish long steins full of frothy ice-cold beers; and in summer traditional brass bands play oompah tunes until well after midnight.
For centuries, Rheinfels Castle was the region's largest, most important fortress. Now the imposing castle—one of many along the UNESCO-listed Upper Middle Rhine Valley—is in ruins. The castle, located on a hill along the river’s left bank, dates back to the 13th century. Roam the grounds and learn its history at the on-site museum.
First constructed in the 13th century and later rebuilt in 1823, Stolzenfels stands tall on a hill along the UNESCO-listed Upper Middle Rhine Valley—showcasing its crenellated towers, drawbridge, and defensive walls. See Stolzenfels, one of many castles along the river, on a boat Rhine tour or explore its renovated interior and gardens.
One of many highlights along the UNESCO-listed Middle Rhine Valley, the small town of St. Goar (Sankt Goar) sits on the banks of the Rhine river. Along with its picturesque medieval buildings, St. Goar is most famous for its 13th-century Rheinfels Castle (Burg Rheinfels) and the landmark Loreley Rock, which stands opposite.
Located along the Upper Rhine—35 miles (56 kilometers) southwest of Frankfurt—Worms (pronounced “Vohrms”) is one of Germany’s most history-saturated cities with origins dating to ancient times. Visit to see its religious landmarks, including the Romanesque Worms Cathedral, Jewish Cemetery, and Luther Monument.
The town of Bingen am Rhein serves as the southern gateway to the Upper Middle Rhine Valley—a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The riverside town boasts heritage architecture and a history that dates back to Roman times. Bingen is also celebrated as a wine hub, and its surrounding slopes are populated by vineyards.
Since the 1980s young travelers have been collecting iconic Hard Rock Café t-shirts from far reaches of the globe. In April of 2003, another opportunity to secure serious Hard Rock swag opened in historic Cologne. Tucked into the landscape of one of the oldest cities in Germany—near the Gothic spires of St Peter and Mary’s cathedral—this American staple serves up traditional comfort food and some pretty incredible live music, too.
Travelers can pop in for one of the Hard Rock Café’s famous live performances, or tuck into a juicy burger with an ice cold beer while taking in a truly spectacular collection of music memorabilia. From Eric Clapton’s hallow body electric guitar to Sting’s autographed Fender and Bob Dylan’s black leather Harley vest, Hard Rock Café Cologne showcases some of the best of American food and international music, too.
More Things to Do in Rhine River
With its fanciful pink façade and landscaped gardens stretching all the way to the banks of the Rhine, Benrath Palace (Schloss Benrath) is one of the region’s most attractive baroque palaces and makes a popular side-trip from nearby Dusseldorf. Built in 1755 for Elector Palatine Carl Theodor, the grand palace looks out over a glittering lake and backs up onto more than 14 acres of parks and gardens, dotted with pretty water features, herb and flower gardens and an orangery.
Today, the palace is open to the public and home to a collection of three museums—the Palace Museum, the Museum of Natural History and the Museum for European Garden Art—and also hosts concerts, weddings and theater performances in its halls.
Maulbronn Abbey, located in Germany's Black Forest, is one of Europe's most complete and best preserved medieval monastery complexes. It combines many architectural styles, including Romanesque and Gothic, making it an interesting place to explore. Visitors can see the different styles between the church, the cloister, and the fountain house. Since the buildings have been maintained so well, visitors can still see what life was like here for the monks from the 12th to the 16th centuries. Explore the grounds where the monks farmed and the sophisticated water management system is still intact.
The courtyard is surrounded by towers, a half-mile long defensive wall, outbuildings, and imposing living quarters. After the Reformation, the complex was converted into a Protestant boarding school. Today it still serves as a school and theological seminary. The monastery complex is also used as a concert venue due to its exceptional acoustics. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1993.
Phantasialand is a theme park near Cologne, Germany with attractions for all ages. The park has six different themed areas, including Fantasy, Deep in Africa, Berlin, Mexico, Mystery, and China Town, where you can enjoy rides and attractions based on the theme. There is a steam carousel, a log flume ride, water rides, playgrounds and activities for children. The park has a good mix of calm entertainment and thrilling adventures, and visitors can experience relaxing boat trips and cable car rides as well as looping roller coasters. Other attractions include the Maus au Chocolat, the Talocan roller coaster, and the Wakobato water ride.
In the winter, Phantasialand has winter-themed illuminations and special events like the Berlin Advent, the Wild West Christmas, and the Christmas market food and drink tour. The park hosts special shows throughout the year. There are two hotels connected with the park for those who want an extended visit. Several restaurants, cafes, and bars conveniently located throughout the park.
The Koblenz Cable Car (Seilbahn Koblenz) is the largest aerial tramway in Germany, gliding over the Rhine River between Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer and Greiffenklaustr on either side. From one of the 18 cabins, visitors can see incredible views of Koblenz, look out to the spot where the Moselle and Rhine rivers meet, and hop off for a visit to the excellently preserved Ehrenbreitstein Fortress.
In 1934, a jeweler by the name of Leonard Dahlen rented his shop to the National Socialist Party, better known as the Nazis. Officially, the building was repurposed as the Nazi Documentation Center, but the Nazis soon set up the shop as the headquarters of the Gestapo, the party’s secret police. Its basement made room for cells and torture stations, where a parade of the regime’s victims - Jews, Roma, homosexuals and other political enemies - were imprisoned and treated savagely for the better part of a decade. Miraculously, when most of Cologne was destroyed during the Allies’ bombardment, the EL-DE Haus remained completely intact.
Today, the building is a memorial to the victims of the Nazi’s fascist regime.
In 1981, the government opened the basement to the public and in 1987, the Nazi Documentation Center was also opened, permanently featuring an exhibit detailing life in Cologne under the National Socialist government. Part of the exhibit features the testimony of a Communist sympathizer and resistance fighter named Martha Mense, who was held for five months and interrogated there for the crime of printing anti-Hitler literature.
While the subject matter is certainly grim, the museum is one of two German museums to have won the European Heritage Association’s prestigious Best in Heritage award, a prize given only to select museums.
Part science museum, part adventure park, Cologne’s Odysseum is the perfect place to get kids excited about science. The hands-on exhibits, interactive displays, and puzzle-solving activities are designed to engage all ages, while adventure playgrounds and a high ropes course inject a hefty dose of fun.
Inspired by the Paul Cézanne quote, “art is a harmony parallel to nature,” the Hombroich Museum Island (Museum Insel Hombroich) is a space where art and nature are indeed harmonious. This conceptual art museum is comprised of 52 acres (21 hectares) of idyllic parklands dotted with galleries, sculptures, and architectural monuments.
Alpenpark Neuss is a large activity center featuring a variety of attractions that range from an 18-hole miniature golf course to a massive outdoor ropes course. There's also a funfussball course, which mixes soccer with golf, and a very popular indoor ski hall where visitors can ski throughout the year.
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