Published on :   06/19/2015

4 German Cities & Towns to Visit on the Rhine

Ah Germany, the land of rolling green hills, mouthwatering currywurst and of course, ever-flowing beer. I must say, I have always had a soft spot for this country, whose fascinating history, natural landscapes and hearty cuisine all secured my adoration long ago. Luckily for me, the past two days on board the MS Lafayette have taken me through this amazing country, allowing me to hop from town to town taking notes on what they have to offer. So, whether you’re prepping for your Rhine cruise or just dreaming about it for now, here are some of the German stops that you can look forward to on the Rhine:


Known as the wine capital of Germany, Mainz is a former Roman fort city that today is home to over 200,000 inhabitants. With a turbulent history going back 2000 years, Mainz offers a variety of museums, markets, churches and monuments for you to explore. Of course, this city also has an incredible significance to our modern world... It was here that Johannes Gutenberg invented the movable type printing press, one of the most important and influential inventions of our time.

Don’t forget to…

Make a stop at the Gutenberg Museum, which is dedicated to the history of printing! Here, you can marvel at original Gutenberg Bibles from the 15th century, take part in a printing press demonstration and explore various relics related to printing history from around the world.


Known as being "Germany's most beautiful corner", Koblenz gets its name from its location at the merging point of the Rhine and Moselle rivers. As a town surrounded by low mountain ranges, visitors' eyes are immediately drawn to the forts and old walls that cap these mountain tops, the most striking of which is the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress, an epic structure towering 118m above the Rhine. No doubt, Koblenz offers a mix of the modern and historical - with shops and cafes sharing street space with countless historic monuments and churches

Don’t forget to…

Join the locals and indulge in a drink or ice cream while people watching at one of the city’s many outdoor cafes and bars.


Cologne is Germany's 4th largest city, and today, over 1 million people call it home. Stretching along both sides of the Rhine, it is known worldwide for its stunning cathedral and ample cultural sites, including hundreds of galleries and dozens of museums. Most visitors might notice that Cologne has a different look and feel than many other German destinations, and this is because most of the city was destroyed during bombings in World War II. Its fascinating history and cultural sites really make it a place worth visiting.

Don’t forget to…

Stop by Germany’s most visited landmark, the Cologne Cathedral and climb up the 533 winding steps to get to the top! From here, you can enjoy unbeatable views of the city and the Rhine River.


Located just along the borders to Belgium and the Netherlands is the charming city of Aachen. While not a port city along the Rhine, I really enjoyed my visit, so I felt it was still worth mentioning! Famous for once being the political centre of Charlemagne’s empire, today it offers plenty to see for any history lover. Main sights include the stunning Aachen Cathedral, which is the oldest cathedral in Northern Europe and the city’s Marktplatz (Marketplace) where you can find Aachen’s Old Town Hall and International Newspaper Museum.

Don’t forget to…

Visit a local bakery and sample some Aachener Printen, a delicious chewy gingerbread that is original to the city of Aachen. Bakery chain Nobis is a local favourite and offers a variety of options – from almond-coated to chocolate dipped!

So, no doubt, Germany and the entire Rhine offers plenty of great views and destinations to explore. I can't wait to continue this journey in the Netherlands, where I'll be tomorrow!

Talk to you all soon,


Germany and Northern Europe river cruises