Attractions Nearby Cologne, Day Trips and Excursions

(Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany)

Aerial photo of Bonn and the River RhineA huge selection of attractions lie just outside of Cologne and therefore the city is the perfect base for visiting the surrounding area. Nearby, both the cities of Bonn and Dusseldorf and just a short distance away from Cologne and full of world-class attractions, including many outstanding museums, restaurants and historical districts.

Also close to Cologne are the attractions and walking trails around the Siebengebirge hills, where you will also find the historic Drachenfels Castle. Those who fancy a cruise down the river will find plenty of pleasure boats operating along the Rhine River, which can be a delightful way to spend an afternoon and venture outside of the city perimeter. The top attractions nearby Cologne are below.

Photo of central square in Bonn


Lying just 30 km / 19 miles to the south-east of Cologne, Bonn is a relaxed and particularly friendly city and is sited alongside the Rhine River, with a population of more than 300,000. Within Bonn are many truly exceptional attractions, including a number of top-rate museums, galleries and restaurants worth searching out. Bonn has become an extremely popular day trip from nearby Cologne and many of its main attractions and concentrated within the Old Town (Altstadt) area, and in particular around Münsterplatz, which is dominated by the breathtaking architecture of the Münster Basilika.

View of the Media Harbour in Dusseldorf


The state capital of Dusseldorf is a mere 37 km / 23 miles north of Cologne and simply not to be missed. A modern city with many modern attractions, visitors to Dusseldorf will find a seemingly endless array of entertainment, which comes in the form of restaurants, bars and many cultural highlights. The historical Altstadt quarter boarders the Rhine River and is where many of the best sights reside, being centred around its core of Marktplatz.


A charming city with more than 160,000 residents, Leverkusen lies around 19 km / 12 miles north of Cologne, on the eastern side of the Rhine River. In the last 100 years Leverkusen has grown considerably and has swallowed up a number of surrounding villages. Attractions here include the historic castle of Schloss Morsbroich, the spacious green expanse that is Neuland Park, the famous illuminated Bayer Cross Leverkusen sign, and the BayArena football stadium - where many soccer matches and seasonal events take place.

Picture showing Bruhl Castle


Around 18 km / 11 miles south-west of Cologne, the city of Bruhl offers the perfect day out for all the family, chiefly since it is home to endless attractions and thrills at the Phantasialand amusement park. With roller coasters and thrill rides distributed across six separate themed areas, Phantasialand also boasts many undercover attractions and a number of restaurants, meaning that whatever the weather, a visit here is sure to be a success with children of all ages. For the adults and close to Phantasialand, Bruhl's Max-Ernst-Museum may also be of interest.