Rhine panoramic view


At a convenient location on the Rhine, the Romans founded the settlement which became today's metropolis Cologne most likely in the year 19 BC. The colony quickly established itself as an administrative and economic center and in the following centuries grew into the position of one of the most important cities in Germany. With numerous relics and since 1388 with a university, the city underlined its religious and cultural importance. As a Hanseatic city, Cologne played a leading role in trade with England. The city rule of the archbishops was shaken off step by step in the Middle Ages. In the end, the citizens of the Free Imperial City took their administration into their own hands. In 1815 Cologne came under the Prussian government without losing its status as a business location as well as a cultural and media city.

Facts & Figures

Icon Founded


Year -19

Icon Location


50.93836 latitude and 6.959974 longitude

Icon Population



UNESCO World Heritage

Yes: the Cologne Cathedral, 1996

What is the city known for?

Cologne Cathedral

The university and the Cologne Fair (Messe Köln)