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Cologne
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Cologne

cologne_cathedrall210.jpg Cologne, located in on the west side of Germany, borders both sides of the romantic and much navigated Rhine River. It is the oldest and fourth largest city in the country, built of cathedrals, museums, art galleries and the sound of church bells.

The birth of Cologne dates back to the days of Julius Caesar, back to 53 BC, when the Roman Empire allied with the Germanic tribe of the Ubi. Some remnants remain, like the Monument of the Ubi, the oldest square stone masonry discovered north of the Alps. Massive concrete traces of the past also connect us to the 13th century, in the shape of medieval walls and gates and monastery churches.

Only 10 percent of the city survived the 263 air raids that showered Cologne with deadly bombs during WW11, but an important 10%. Reconstruction began in 1947, and now it's impossible to tell what is old and what is made to look old, the work is so accurate and fine-tuned. The maintenance of the ancient (750 years old in 1998) and very famous Cologne Cathedral, is an ongoing never-ending project.

Several bridges connect east and west Cologne, but none are as clogged with pedestrians as the train bridge where more than 1000 trains cross daily, making it the busiest train bridge on the continent.

Like the river that cuts it in half, Cologne seems in constant motion, particularly on the east side. The east side is the "Old Town" side, the train station side, the side the twin-spired, gothic cathedral stands straight and proud. The east side is nearly always packed with visitors from all over the world, coming and going, staring, shopping and socializing.

Population in Cologne is over one million, yet it seems much less, the city's heart beats so intimately in the neighborhood pubs, the cobblestone streets, the opera houses, and the public dining rooms.

Nine television stations, including Europe's largest public broadcast company, West German Television, three radio stations and numerous film companies are based in the city, establishing modern Cologne as a leader in communication and the media, employing over 45,000 people.


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