- PRICES LIST
- HOTELS (BEST RATED)
- HOTELS (BEST VALUE)
- COFFEE & DRINK
- SIGHTS & LANDMARKS
- MUSEUMS & GALLERIES
- THINGS TO DO
- FESTIVALS & EVENTS
- STAY SAFE
Bonn is a city on the banks of the Rhine in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, with a population of 311,287. Bonn is in the southernmost part of the Rhine-Ruhr region, Germany's largest metropolitan area, with over 11 million inhabitants.
Founded in the first century BC as a Roman settlement, Bonn is one of Germany's oldest cities. From 1597 to 1794, Bonn was the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and residence of the Archbishops and Prince-electors of Cologne. In 1949, the Parliamentary Council drafted and adopted the German constitution, the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany in Bonn. Though Berlin was symbolically named the de jurecapital, from 1949 to 1990 Bonn was the seat of government and de facto capital of West Germany. In recognition of its former status as German capital, it holds the name of Federal City (Bundesstadt). Bonn currently shares the status of seat of government with Berlin, with thePresident, the Chancellor and many government ministries maintaining sizable presences in Bonn.
The two DAX-listed corporationsDeutsche Post DHL andDeutsche Telekom have headquarters in Bonn. The city is also the location of 19 United Nations institutions and theUniversity of Bonn. Bonn is the birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven (born 1770).
|FOUNDED :||1st century BC|
|TIME ZONE :||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
|AREA :||141.06 km2 (54.46 sq mi)|
|COORDINATES :||50°44′02.37″N 7°5′59.33″E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 49.1%|
• Female: 50.9%
|AREA CODE :||228|
|POSTAL CODE :||53111–53229|
|DIALING CODE :||+49 228|
Bonn is one of the largest cities in the Cologne Lowland, second only to Cologne itself in terms of population count. Despite the size, it maintains a cozy, relaxed atmosphere of a small town, featuring mostly low-rise buildings, a charming old town and a lot of greenery. Located only 28 km south of Cologne up the Rhine river, it has a wealth of museums and points of interest.
Bonn was the de facto capital of the pre-reunification Federal Republic of Germany ("West Germany") from 1949 through 1990. The city still holds the seats of many federal institutions, and remains a popular choice for large-scale exhibitions and conferences. Bonn is also the birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven, who is celebrated throughout the city with several memorials and events.
You should consider a trip to Bonn if you like atmospheric smaller cities with many students and a rich culture. Admirers call it Italy's most northern city because of its street culture with many cafes and beer gardens in the summer. It is also a good base for day trips to Cologne, Düsseldorf, the romantic Rhine and the Eifel region.
Beethoven's birthplace is located in Bonngasse near the market place. Next to the market place is the Old City Hall, built in 1737 in Rococo style, under the rule of Clemens August of Bavaria. It is used for receptions of guests of the city, and as an office for the mayor. Nearby is the Kurfürstliches Schloss, built as a residence for the prince-elector and now the main building of the University of Bonn.
The Poppelsdorfer Allee is an avenue flanked by chestnut trees which had the first horsecar of the city. It connects theKurfürstliches Schloss with the Poppelsdorfer Schloss, a palace that was built as a resort for the prince-electors in the first half of the 18th century, and whose grounds are now a botanical garden (the Botanischer Garten Bonn). This axis is interrupted by a railway line and Bonn Hauptbahnhof, a building erected in 1883/84.
The Beethoven Monument stands on the Münsterplatz, which is flanked by the Bonn Minster, one of Germany's oldest churches.
The three highest buildings in the city are the radio mast of WDR in Bonn-Venusberg (180 m), the headquarters of the Deutsche Post called Post Tower (162.5 m) and the former building for the German members of parliament Langer Eugen (114.7 m) now the new location of the UN Campus
- Bonn Information, Windeckstraße 1, 53111 Bonn (street between the post office and Karstadt), . M-F 10AM-6:30PM, Sa 9AM-4PM, Su 10AM-2PM. The tourist information offers almost all the help a tourist could need. They also have brochures about walking tours in English. You can also buy tickets for the theater and the opera there.
History before 1945
The history of the city dates back to Roman times. In about 12 BC, the Roman army appears to have stationed a small unit in what is presently the historical centre of the city. Even earlier, the army had resettled members of a Germanic tribal group allied with Rome, the Ubii, in Bonn. The Latin name for that settlement, "Bonna", may stem from the original population of this and many other settlements in the area, the Eburoni. The Eburoni were members of a large tribal coalition effectively wiped out during the final phase of Caesar's War in Gaul. After several decades, the army gave up the small camp linked to the Ubii-settlement. During the 1st century AD, the army then chose a site to the north of the emerging town in what is now the section of Bonn-Castell to build a large military installation dubbed Castra Bonnensis, i.e., literally, "Fort Bonn". Initially built from wood, the fort was eventually rebuilt in stone. With additions, changes and new construction, the fort remained in use by the army into the waning days of the Western Roman Empire, possibly the mid-5th century. The structures themselves remained standing well into the Middle Ages, when they were called the Bonnburg. They were used byFrankish kings until they fell into disuse. Eventually, much of the building materials seem to have been re-used in the construction of Bonn's 13th-century city wall. The Sterntor (star gate) in the city center is a reconstruction using the last remnants of the medieval city wall.
To date, Bonn's Roman fort remains the largest fort of its type known from the ancient world, i.e. a fort built to accommodate a full-strength Imperial Legion and its auxiliaries. The fort covered an area of approximately 250,000 square metres (62 acres). Between its walls it contained a dense grid of streets and a multitude of buildings, ranging from spacious headquarters and large officers' quarters to barracks, stables and amilitary jail. Among the legions stationed in Bonn, the "1st", i.e. the Prima Legio Minervia, seems to have served here the longest. Units of the Bonn legion were deployed to theatres of war ranging from modern-day Algeria to what is now the Russian republic of Chechnya.
The chief Roman road linking the provincial capitals of Cologne and Mainz cut right through the fort where it joined the fort's main road (now, Römerstraße). Once past the South Gate, the Cologne–Mainz road continued along what are now streets named Belderberg, Adenauerallee et al. On both sides of the road, the local settlement, Bonna, grew into a sizeable Roman town.
In late antiquity, much of the town seems to have been destroyed by marauding invaders. The remaining civilian population then took refuge inside the fort along with the remnants of the troops stationed here. During the final decades of Imperial rule, the troops were supplied by Franci chieftains employed by the Roman administration. When the end came, these troops simply shifted their allegiances to the new barbarian rulers, the Kingdom of the Franks. From the fort, the Bonnburg, as well as from a new medieval settlement to the South centered around what later became the minster, grew the medieval city of Bonn. Local legends arose from this period that the name of the village came from Saint Boniface via Vulgar Latin *Bonnifatia, but this proved to be a myth.
Between the 11th and 13th centuries, the Romanesque style Bonn Minster was built, and in 1597 Bonn became the seat of the Archdiocese of Cologne. The city gained more influence and grew considerably. The city was subject to a major bombardment during the Siege of Bonn in 1689. The elector Clemens August(ruled 1723–1761) ordered the construction of a series of Baroque buildings which still give the city its character. Another memorable ruler was Max Franz(ruled 1784–1794), who founded the university and the spa quarter of Bad Godesberg. In addition he was a patron of the young Ludwig van Beethoven, who was born in Bonn in 1770; the elector financed the composer's first journey toVienna.
In 1794, the city was seized by French troops, becoming a part of the First French Empire. In 1815 following the Napoleonic Wars, Bonn became part of theKingdom of Prussia. Administered within the Prussian Rhine Province, the city became part of the German Empire in 1871 during the Prussian-led unification of Germany. Bonn was of little relevance in these years.
History since 1945
During World War II, Bonn acquired military significance because of its strategic location on the Rhine River, which formed a natural barrier to easy penetration into the German heartland from the west. The Allied ground advance into Germany reached Bonn on 7 March 1945, and the US 1st Infantry Division captured the city during the battle of 8–9 March 1945.
Following World War II, Bonn was in the British zone of occupation, and in 1949 became the de facto capital of the newly formed Federal Republic of Germany (the de jure capital of the Federal Republic throughout the years of the Cold War division of Germany was always Berlin). Such "provisional" capital cities have been common in history; for example, the "official" capital of the Republic of China is still Nanjing on mainland China, with Taipei considered the provisional capital. The choice of Bonn was made mainly due to the advocacy of West Germany's first chancellor, Konrad Adenauer, a former Cologne Mayor and a native of that area. This was despite the fact that Frankfurt already had most of the required facilities and using Bonn was estimated to be 95 million DM more expensive than using Frankfurt. However, Adenauer and other prominent politicians intended to make Berlin the capital of the reunified Germany, and felt that locating the capital in a major city like Frankfurt or Hamburg would imply a permanent capital and weaken support in West Germany for reunification.
Because of its relatively small size for a capital city, Bonn was sometimes referred to, jokingly, as the Bundeshauptstadt ohne nennenswertes Nachtleben (Federal capital without noteworthy nightlife) or the Bundesdorf (Federal Village). At one point in the post-WWII/Cold War era, the U.S. Embassy in Bonn was America's largest, "comparable, with its thousands of staff, to the [U.S.] Baghdad embassy today".
German reunification in 1990 made Berlin the nominal capital of Germany again. This decision did not mandate that the republic's political institutions would also move. While some argued for the seat of government to move to Berlin, others advocated leaving it in Bonn—a situation roughly analogous to that of the Netherlands, where Amsterdam is the capital but The Hague is the seat of government. Berlin's previous history as united Germany's capital was strongly connected with Imperial Germany, the Weimar Republic and more ominously with Nazi Germany. It was felt that a new peacefully united Germany should not be governed from a city connected to such overtones of war. Additionally, Bonn was closer to Brussels, headquarters of the EU.
The heated debate that resulted was settled by the Bundestag (Germany's parliament) only on 20 June 1991. By a vote of 338–320, the Bundestag voted to move the seat of government to Berlin. The vote broke largely along regional lines, with legislators from the south and west favouring Bonn and legislators from the north and east voting for Berlin. It also broke along generational lines as well; older legislators with memories of Berlin's past glory favoured Berlin, while younger legislators favoured Bonn. Ultimately, the votes of the Ossi legislators tipped the balance in favour of Berlin.
While the government and parliament moved to Berlin, as a compromise, some of the ministries (such as Defence and Agriculture) largely remained in Bonn, with only the top officials based in Berlin. There was no plan to move these departments, and so Bonn remained a second, unofficial capital with the new title "Federal City" (Bundesstadt). Because of the necessary construction work, the move took until 1999 to complete. Over 8,000 of the 18,000 federal officials remain in Bonn.
At present, the private sector plays a major role in Bonn's economy. With five stock listed companies, Bonn has the fourth highest market capitalisation among German cities. With headquarters of DHL, T-Mobile and other renowned companies, managers have replaced the public sector.
Bonn has an oceanic climate (Cfb). In the south of the Cologne lowland in the Rhine valley, Bonn is in one of Germany's warmest regions.
Climate data for Bonn
|Daily mean °C (°F)||2.4|
|Average rainfall mm (inches)||61.0|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||51.0||76.0||110.0||163.0||190.0||195.0||209.0||194.0||141.0||104.0||55.0||41.0|
|Source: Deutscher Wetterdienst|
The head offices of Deutsche Telekom, its subsidiary T-Mobile, Deutsche Post,Haribo, German Academic Exchange Service, and SolarWorld are in Bonn.
In 1969, the independent towns of Bad Godesberg and Beuel as well as several villages were incorporated into Bonn, resulting in a city more than twice as large as before. Bad Godesberg and Beuel became districts (Stadtbezirke) of Bonn with some independence and populations of about 70,000 each.
Each district has its own quarters:
- Bad Godesberg: Alt-Godesberg, Friesdorf, Godesberg-Nord, Godesberg-Villenviertel, Heiderhof, Hochkreuz, Lannesdorf, Mehlem, Muffendorf, Pennenfeld, Plittersdorf, Rüngsdorf, Schweinheim
- Beuel: Beuel-Mitte, Beuel-Ost, Geislar, Hoholz, Holtorf, Holzlar, Küdinghoven, Limperich, Oberkassel, Pützchen/Bechlinghoven, Ramersdorf,Schwarzrheindorf/Vilich-Rheindorf, Vilich, Vilich-Müldorf
- Bonn: Auerberg, Bonn-Castell (until 2003: Bonn-Nord), Bonn-Zentrum, Buschdorf, Dottendorf, Dransdorf, Endenich, Graurheindorf, Gronau, Ippendorf, Kessenich, Nordstadt, Poppelsdorf, Röttgen, Südstadt,Tannenbusch, Ückesdorf, Venusberg, Weststadt
- Hardtberg: Brüser Berg, Duisdorf, Hardthöhe, Lengsdorf, Lessenich/Meßdorf
Prices in Bonn
MARKET / SUPERMARKET
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€0.70|
|Bottle of Wine||1 bottle||€7.00|
|Dinner (Low-range)||for 2||€28.00|
|Dinner (Mid-range)||for 2||€42.00|
|Dinner (High-range)||for 2||€|
|Mac Meal or similar||1 meal||€7.00|
|Beer (Imported)||0.33 l||€3.50|
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€3.00|
|Coctail drink||1 drink||€8.00|
|Men’s Haircut||1 haircut||€17.00|
|Mobile (prepaid)||1 min.||€0.09|
|Pack of Marlboro||1 pack||€5.70|
|Toilet paper||4 rolls||€|
CLOTHES / SHOES
|Jeans (Levis 501 or similar)||1||€61.00|
|Dress summer (Zara, H&M)||1||€45.00|
|Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas)||1||€82.00|
|Local Transport||1 ticket||€2.70|
57 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- meals in cheap restaurant
- public transport
- cheap hotel
191 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- mid-range meals and drinks
Transportation - Get In
Bonn is nominally served by the Cologne-Bonn Konrad Adenauer Airport(German:Köln-Bonn) (IATA:CGN) in Cologne. The airport handles far more air cargo traffic than passengers, but since the airport has become the hub for a Lufthansa's low-fare subsidiary Germanwings, it is well connected to many major European airports. The airport is also well-served by other low-fare airlines like Ryanair and holiday flight specialists like and TUIfly.
That said, the airport sees very little intercontinental passenger traffic, save for a few flights to countries like Turkey, Morocco or Iran operated by the respective countries airlines and serving mainly local ethnic minorities. In November/December 2015, those will be joined by Germanwings's long-distance sister airline, Eurowings, flying to holiday destinations like Dubai or Bangkok. For other long-distance flights, you have to take one of the many connections to one of Europe's major intercontinental hubs.
From the airport, take the SB60 airport bus (€7.20) to Bonn's central bus station near the Hauptbahnhof. It leaves every 30 minutes from outside Terminal 1 arrivals, and takes a little over half an hour to reach the Bonn city centre. You can also take a train from the airport to Bonn-Beuel, which is on the other side of the river from Bonn city (Zentrum). A taxi to central Bonn will cost around €45.
If you are flying transatlantically, chances are Frankfurt is a better option time-wise - as you are likely to get a direct flight - though not necessarily in terms of budget. If you are cost conscious comparing airfares to CGN, FRA and several other airports in the general area is certainly a good idea, as due to the quirky nature of airline pricing differences in price of one or two hundred Euro are not at all uncommon.
Timewise, however, CGN is just as far from Bonn as the Frankfurt Airport IATA:FRA, one of Europe's busiest intercontinental hubs. The airport has a long-distance train station directly connected to Bonn's Siegburg railway station, which high-speed trains (departing every hour) reach in less than 40 minutes. When flying Lufthansa, you can even book the train connection as a part of your long-distance flight ticket - the station's IATA code is ZPY and the Lufthansa tickets to this destination are often priced the same or slightly lower as those terminating at FRA. For more details see rail air alliances.
The train route from Bonn Hauptbahnhof to Frankfurt via Koblenz is especially beautiful as it runs along the Rhine and you will see many old towns and castles on the way. It takes about 2 hours.
Travelling with the regional train SE10 "RheingauLinie" from Frankfurt try to sit on the right hand side of the train for the better view and the Regional-Express RE 5 "Rhein-Express" or Mittelrheinbahn MRB26 from Koblenz to sit in the left hand side.
If you are in a hurry, however, better take the fast train (ICE) to Siegburg from Amsterdam, Basel, Brussels Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hannover, Munich or Stuttgart, among others.
- Bonn Central Station (Bonn Hbf), Am Hauptbahnhof 1, , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Despite the name, meaning Bonn central station, it is only served local and regional trains, and also acts as the hub for Bonn's light rail system (Stadtbahn). You can arrive there from Cologne on the S-Bahn, as well as Frankfurt and Koblenz via the longer, scenic route.
- Siegburg ICE-Bahnhof. The station on the right hand side of the Rhine is where the German high-speed trains (ICE) stop, instead of Bonn Hauptbahnhof. You can get there from Bonn's city centre in around 20 minutes by using tram S66.
- Bonn-Beuel to the right side of the Rhine: only Regional trains RB27 and RE8.
Traveling by long distance bus, you would typically take the bus lines to Cologne and then continue your travel to Bonn by regional train. There's only one long-distance bus station of Postbus located at the Posttower
- Postbus station. There's a Postbus connection from Bonn to Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, Stuttgart, Munich, and Dortmund
Transportation - Get Around
The city centre itself is not very big and you are able to reach the different attractions there by foot.
Bonn has an excellent bus, night bus, tram and subway system operated by the local Stadtwerke Bonn . There are ticket offices and vending machines at major stations, offering single tickets (€2.70), multiple tickets and both 24-hour and weekly passes. The tickets are valid in local trains, Stadtbahn (subway), tram, buses and night buses.
It is also a good city to explore by bike. Rental bikes are available at the train station from Deutsche Bahn at platform 1 or from the Radstation behind the train station.
- BEST RATED -
- BEST VALUE -
Bonn's city centre hosts the usual chain stores like Kaufhof, Karstadt, C&A, H&M, Esprit, Zero, NewYorker, Promod, Butler's, Tchibo and Runner's Point.
- Haribo Factory Store (Haribo Factory Shop), Friesdorfer Str. 121, 53175 Bonn. Haribo, the world-famous candy maker, has its headquarters in Bonn (Haribo is an acronym for HAns RIegel BOnn). The factory store is located nearby the old factory in Bad Godesberg, 500 m from U-Bahn 16 and 63 Wurzerstraße stop. It features a brief exposition of Haribo memorabilia as well as a huge variety of gummy sweets and gadgets. Entering is a bit of a Charlie-and-the-chocolate-factory moment.
- Supermarkets. There is a supermarket at Kaufhof's basement where you can get normal food and many specialties, but it is quite expensive. You can find the ecological supermarket Basic at Maximilianstraße near to the Hauptbahnhof, they also have a snack bar. There is also a REWE supermarket at Friedensplatz. Best place to buy cosmetics is dm (Sternstraße or Friedensplatz) or Rossmann (Sternstraße). Cheap supermarkets like Aldi, Lidl and Plus are outside the city centre.
- Comic Shop, Oxfordstraße 17. M-F 10AM-10PM, Sa 10AM-6PM. English comics and books, role playing games, card games.
- Rheinauenflohmarkt, Rheinauen. from April to September, the Rheinauen host a big flea market every third Saturday a month where you can find everything from second hand clothes to DVDs, bikes, furniture, books, board games and jewellery from India and Africa. Bargaining is allowed. It starts at 8 in the morning, best time to visit is 10. Take Straßenbahn Line 66 to Rheinauen.
- Bakeries. Mon-Sat 7-20. Germany is famous for its bread. There are bakeries all over the city where you can buy different kinds of bread rolls (Brötchen) starting from 30 Cent (the wholesome ones with grains are 50 Cent or more), sandwiches (belegte Brötchen) for €1,50 and pastries and cakes. A very delicious one is Schell on the corner of Stockenstraße/Am Hof or at Bertha von Suttner Platz. It is still family-run and has only 5 shops in Bonn (try the chocolate buns, Schokobrötchen). Kamps and Lubig, however, are also quite good.
- Student cafeterias. M-F 9–16. You can get cheap and nutritious sandwiches and coffee at the student cafeterias at the Main University Building in the city centre (Am Hof/Regina Pacis Weg), Juridicum (Adenauerallee/Lennestraße) and on the first floor of the Mensa Nassestraße.
- Mensa, Nassestraße. M-Fr 11.30-14.00 & 17.30-19.00, Sat 11.30-14.00. The official student canteen offers several dishes, Essen 1 on the second floor is vegetarian. The food is not gourmet but okay for a canteen. The salad bar on the 3rd floor is quite good. Mensa is also open for non-students who pay a higher price (about €5 for Essen 1), but they do not always ask for your student identification if you look young. €3-6.
- Soup in the City, Franziskanerstraße. M-F 11-19, Sat 12-16. A small bistro, where you get soups and salads, hand-made and really good. Also fruit juices and baguettes €4-8.
- Mandu, Franziskanerstraße 5. M-Sat 11-20. Small Korean snack bar, they offer Mandus, rolls, kimchi, glass noodles, cheap, friendly and very good. €2-8.
- Dehly&deSander Broterei, Am Hof 26a (opposite to the university main building). Mon-Sat 10-20. Delicious and Sandwiches, Wraps, Salads, Soups. €3-6.
- Bonn(e) Baguette, Kaiserplatz 10. freshly made and oven baked baguette sandwiches, very delicious. The shop is tiny and hot, so better chose take away. Often very crowded during lunchtime. €3-6.
- Bagel Brothers, Maximilianstraße 14 (next to the train station), . M-Fr 7.30-23, at 8.30-22, Sun 9-20.30. Healthy snacks: Bagels (of course), plain or with toppings, salads, juices, muffins, brownies, good coffee. They have a nice quiet terrace you would not expect in the city centre. €3-6.
- Orient-Express, Bertha-von-Suttner-Platz 8. until late. A visit to Germany would not be complete without a taste of the new national dish Döner. Orient Express makes good ones, although you might get them cheaper elsewhere (but not much). Their Falafel Sandwich (vegetarian) is also great. from €2.
- La Piccola, Bonngasse 4. 11-23. Traditional and rustic Italian restaurant with very small tables and pictures of opera singers on the walls. Pizza, pasta and salads. from €5.
- Bönnsch, Sterntorbrücke 4 (near Friedensplatz in the central pedestrian zone), . M-Th 11AM-1AM, F-Sat 11AM-3AM, Sun 12AM-12PM. Local Bierhaus that brews its own beer. Food includes staples such as schnitzel with fries, steaks and other hearty fare. €15-20 including drinks.
- Bierhaus Machold, Heerstrasse (near the corner of Wolfstrasse, Altstadt).M-Sat 5PM-11PM. Excellent German food and good beer in a nice pub. Beer garden in summer. Try the Jägerschnitzel! €7-15 for mains.
- Roses, Martinsplatz 2a (near Bonner Münster and Kaiserplatz), . 9-1, Sun 10-1. fancy restaurant for people mainly in their 30s and 40s. A good choice if you are not on a tight budget and if you like European food with a touch Italian. Dishes start from €12 (without drinks). Brunch on Sundays.
- Makiman, Sterntorbrücke 11, . M-Th 12-15 & 17.30-22,Fr-Sat 12-20,Sun 16-21.30. Very good Japanese restaurant, besides very fresh sushi they also offer soups, curries, and salads. €8.
- Cassius-Garten (vegetarian food), Maximilianstraße 28d (opposite the Hauptbahnhof). M-Sat 11-20. Completely vegetarian, buffet-style, vegan meals are marked with a green dot. Quite expensive but really good, try the soups for €2! €1.60/100g.
- Rüen Thai, Berliner Freiheit 14 (next to Hilton and Kennedy Bridge), . 11.30-15&18-24. Thai dishes, some of them very spicy, in a beautifully decorated setting. They also offer a very good cocktail selection (although rather expensive), but be careful - some of them can really knock you out. from €8.
- Ristorante Caminetto, Römerstrasse 83 (Bonn-Castell, bus stop Nordstraße). M-Sat 12-14.30 & 18-23. A very nice, family-run Italian restaurant in the heart of Bonn, where you get a selection of the finest wines and meals of the region of Piedmont. Just that you are not disappointed: although Italian, they don't have pizza. €12.
- Mogul, Heerstraße 64 (Nordstadt), . Best Indian restaurant in Bonn, although the restaurant makes the impression of a carefully redecorated garage the food is really good and the owners are friendly. It is also cheaper than other Indian restaurants. from €9.
- Karawane, Adrianstraße 104 (Straßenbahn 66 to Königswinter/Bad Honnef, get out at Oberkassel Nord, when getting out of the station turn two times to the left and follow the road.), . 18-23. Oberkassel is a bit outside of the city centre, but Karawane is worth the effort. It is basically an "All you can eat" (but not a buffet) consisting of 10 dishes from the Mediterranean and Middle East region. The dishes change every week (see their website), you can order a vegetarian selection (without surcharge) or additional dishes like lamb. The atmosphere is nice and the service friendly. It is often crowded, so better call for a reservation. €15,60.
Coffe & Drink
- Café Göttlich, Fürstenstraße(opposite to Bouvier). 9-2. One of the traditional student cafés, cozy, often crowded, with some of the best cafe latte in town. In summer, the seats outside are the places to see and to be seen
- Café Blau, Franziskanerstraße. 10-24.Mainly visited by students, this café is in the entrance hall of a public swimming pool. It is kind of "cult" to go there, famous caffe latte, good breakfast offers. from €2.
- Cafetiero, Fürstenstraße. Very good coffee specialties, the interior is rather modern, closes already at 8.
- Goldbraun, Fürstenstraße. The Goldbraun Cafe boasts excellent espresso, comparable to Starbucks.
- Café Miebach, Marktplatz, at Stern Hotel. One of the most traditional cafes in Bonn. Not cheap, but good service and excellent cakes. Customers are mostly elderly. In the summer, they offer 300 seats outside directly at the Marktplatz.
- Café Fassbender, Corner Sternstrasse and Dreieck. Café Fassbender is known for its cake. It is a pastry shop and a café. Often very crowded. It is a great location for middle-aged or older people to visit.
- Arco, Sterntorbrücke 2 (near Friedensplatz). : Very good breakfast offers, large breakfast for 2 incl. coffee for €8,90, friendly service.
- Schokoladen, Münsterstrasse 7 (road between H&M and Karstadt). is located close to the central station. This small café offers excellent chocolate-based drinks. Freshly made with melted chocolate and milk you can enjoy it hot, cold or mixed with coffee or other drinks. You can also have an amazing chocolate fondue with fresh fruits and cookies.
- Teestube Gschwendner, Dreieck 2. 10:00-19:00. Not a cafe, but a tea room in a beautiful frame house that hosts the Tea shop Tee Gschwendner. They brew high quality tea on the second floor and also have a small choice of cakes and scones. The shop on the first floor often offers free tea tasting of one or two teas in a Samowar.
Sights & Landmarks
- Old Town Hall (Altes Rathaus), Markt (at the market place).Built in 1737 in Rococo style.
- Bonner Münster, Gerhard-von-Are Straße 5, , e-mail:[email protected].Church 7AM-7PM, cloister 9AM-5PM. A beautiful basilica, in Bonn's city center. Only Bonn Information or the Bonner Münster Foundation are permitted to arrange guided tours to the basilica. The "Bonn Information" organization can arrange for non-German tours.
- The Beethoven Monument stands on the Münsterplatz.
- Kreuzbergkirche, Stationsweg 21, e-mail: [email protected].In summer 9AM–6PM, winter 9AM-5PM. Visit of the Holy Staircase 9AM–5PM.The church is a beautiful example of baroque architecture. Today, the church serves as both a church and a German language and culture school, but is probably best known for the "Heiliger Steige." The church was erected in 1627/1628 on the orders of the archbishop to replace an older chapel. In 1746 Elector Clemens August von Bavarian donated the "Heiliger Steige", or holy staircase, which, according to legend has pieces of the cross the crucified Jesus set into the stone. Small brass crosses on the second, eleventh, and last steps mark the spots where the pieces of the cross are supposed to be set. Beautiful view over Bonn.
- Universität Bonn (University Main Building), Regina Pacis Weg 3. 8AM-10PM. It is in the former residential palace of the Archbishop and Kurfürst of Cologne, built by Enrico Zuccalli from 1697-1705. It stretches from Kaiserplatz to the Rhine (Alter Zoll) and crosses two streets (Stockenstraße and Adenauerallee), the gates are called Stockentor and Koblenzer Tor. The building looks impressive and beautiful from the outside, but could use a renovation inside. Feel free to walk in. Best view on the palace is from the Hofgarten side. The Hofgarten is a park directly in front of the palace and a place for students to meet and relax in the summer between and after lectures. During Bonn's times as capital, it saw all the major anti-government demonstrations.
- Poppelsdorfer Schloss and Botanical Gardens, Crossing of Poppelsdorfer and Meckenheimer Allee.Apr-Oct 10AM-6PM, Nov-Mar 10AM-4PM, Sa closed. Was built as a resort in rococo style for the Archbishop of Cologne Clemens August from 1715 to 1753 by Robert de Cotte and today houses the university's mineral collection, several science departments and the botanical gardens. The palace itself is not open to the public. The botanical gardens next to the palace are a peaceful and beautiful place to relax, have a look at the sunbathing turtles at the pool. The gardens cultivate about 10.000 plant species. The green houses were recently renovated. Coming from the city center, walk there from the University Main Building via Kaiserplatz and Poppelsdorfer Allee. Free, on Sunday and holidays €3 (reduced €1).
- Alter Friedhof, Berliner Platz (Stop Stadthaus). The old cemetery, created in 1715, is an atmospheric cemetery with many old graves, among them the graves of Robert and Clara Schumann, Ernst Moritz Arndt, Friedrich Schiller's wife Charlotte von Schiller and their son.
- Südstadt. The southern part of the city owns impressively beautiful buildings from the late 19th and early 20th century in ancient alleys. You can get an English walking tour brochure from the Tourist Information.
- Doppelkirche in Schwarzrheindorf, Dixstr. 41 (on the other side (some say the wrong side) of Bonn in the suburb of Schwarzrheindorf). Tu-Sa 9AM-6:30PM (9AM-5PM in winter), Su 11AM-6:30PM, M closed. The double church St. Maria (upper level) and St. Clemens (lower level) was built in 1151 and is due to its rich ceiling paintings of saints and apocalyptic scenes one of the most outstanding romanic churches in Germany. Take Bus no. 640 or 550 to Schwarzrheindorf. You can walk back to Bonn Beuel or Bonn's city centre by following the dam and crossing the Kennedy bridge, it is a popular promenade. Take a break at Bahnhöfchen or Rheinlust near the bridge.
- Jewish Cemetery. The old and small Jewish Cemetery is in Bonn Schwarzrheindorf between the Doppelkirche and the North Bridge, you can access it from the dam which is a popular promenade.
- Rheinauen (take line 66 to Bad Honnef/Königswinter stop Rheinauen). A big park in the south of Bonn directly behind the Post Tower. You can walk there from the city centre following the rhine promenade, it is about 3 km and very popular on the weekend.
- Deutsche Welle World Headquarters and Radio, Kurt-Schumacher-Straße 3, , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Tours leave M-Fr 10AM, 2PM. Deutsche Welle (Also known simply as DW) is Germany's international media outlet and is now housed in what was supposed to be the German parliament's home. After the German government decided to move the building was taken over by DW to become its world headquarters and home to its radio operations. Tours are conducted in German, however, tours can be arranged in English, French, Spanish, or Portuguese when requested in advance. DW asks that anyone wishing to take a tour reserve at least two months in advance and may require you to be with a group of 6-20 persons, however, they may arrange an exception if contacted. Tours last an average of two hours. Tours are free.
- Kottenforst. A big nature park between Bonn (quarters Venusberg, Bad Godesberg) up to the cities of Euskirchen and Wachtberg. It is appr. 4.000 ha and popular for walking tours. The nearest ones starts at Waldesruh on Venusberg (which has also a nice cafe). Another route starts at Bahnhof Kottenforst (a pretty frame house) which you can reach by taking a train to Euskirchen, but the train only stops there on weekends).
The former capital
- Palais Schaumburg, Adenauerallee 139/141. Until 2001 it was used to house the office of West Germany's chancellor and the chancellor's cabinet. Today, the building is used as a secondary headquarters for the chancellor.
- Villa Hammerschmidt, Adenauerallee 135.Between 1951-1994 the Villa Hammerschmidt served as the residence of the West German President, however, since the relocation of the German government to Berlin the building serves as a secondary residence for the president.
Museums & Galleries
The Bonn Regio WelcomeCards offers free admission to most public museums in Bonn (including all of those listed below), free rides on buses and trams on the local public transport system (VRS), and discounts to other tourist attractions. The validity for both individual or family WelcomeCards are in increments of 24 hours and can be purchased online, at the Tourismus offices or participating hotels. The 24-hour individual ticket cost €9.
- Ägyptisches Museum, Regina-Pacis-Weg 7 (University of Bonn. U-Bahn stop: Universität / Markt), , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Hours: Tues. - Sun.: Noon - 18. Closed Mondays and holidays. The University of Bonn-administered Egyptian Museum.Admission: Adults: €3.50, Students and Children (7 years+): €2.50, Family ticket (2 adults and 3 children): €9.
- Akademisches Kunstmuseum, Am Hofgarten 21, 53113 Bonn. Tu&Th 10-16, Sun 11-16, closed on public holidays and in August. the academic museum of antiquies is situated at the other end of the Hofgarten park, directly opposite to the main building. It is a beautiful building, constructed from 1823-1830 and designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel and Hermann Friedrich Waesemann, and hosts one of the largest collections of plaster casts of ancient Greek and Roman sculptures in the world. Entrance fee €1,50, free admission for students.
- Arithmeum, Lennéstrasse 2, 53113 Bonn (Subway Stop: Universität / Markt Busses and Trams: Hauptbahnhof), . Tuesday - Sunday 11AM-06PM. The Arithmeum features a collection of historical mechanical calculating machines, which today comprises more than 1200 pieces and is the largest in the world. It features the history of calculators, from ancient abacuses and ropes with knots, until the modern day PC. The design of the building itself and its colorful art collection are an added bonus. €3 / €2.
- Beethoven-Haus (Beethoven House), Bonngasse 18-26 (Take trams (62 or 66) or buses to Bertha-von-Suttner-Platz / Beethoven-Haus), , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. 1 Apr-31 Oct M-Sa 10AM-6PM, Su & holidays: 11AM-6PM; 1 Nov-31 Mar M-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su & holidays 11AM-5PM; closed New Year's Day, Carnival-Thursday, the Monday preceding Ash Wednesday, Carnival-Tuesday, Good Friday, Easter Sunday and 24-26 Dec, New Year's eve. The birthplace of the great composer is now a museum dedicated to his life and work. The museum even has a lock of Beethoven's hair on display. Somewhat ironically Bonn advertises their hometown son despite Beethoven's vehement hatred for his hometown. With a competent docent this museum is well worth the visit and is more interesting than Mozart's Geburtshaus in Salzburg.
- August Macke Haus, Bornheimer Straße 96 (U-Bahn stop: Bonn West), , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Hours: Tues - Fri. 2:30-6PM. Sa, Sun, & holidays 11AM-5PM.August Macke, a leading member of Der Blaue Reiter, a famous expressionist group, lived in this house with his wife, Elizabeth, for a few years and produced over 400 works in the top floor studio. Admission (regular/reduced): Adults: €3.50 / €2.50, Children: €2.50/ €1.50.
- Haus der Geschichte (House of the History of the Federal Republic of Germany), Willy-Brandt-Allee 14 (U-Bahn linien 16, 63, 66, „Heussallee / Museumsmeile“), , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. Tue - Fri 9AM-7PM, Sat, Sun and Christmas season 10AM-6PM, closed on December 24, and 31. An interesting explanation of German history after 1945 that is constantly updated. A must if you are interested in history or politics. Exhibitions are presented in German only, but guide booklets with English translations are available for a couple Euros, and guided tours for school groups conducted in English are available free of charge when prebooked. Free admission. Tour groups with a guide: Tel.: (02 28) 91 65-400 or [email protected].
- Kunstmuseum Bonn, Friedrich-Ebert-Allee 2 (Museumsmeile. U-Bahn stop: Heussallee. Bus 610 will also stop at Heussallee), .Tues. – Sun.: 11AM-6PM, Wed.: 11AM-9PM. Closed on Mondays; February 23 and 27; December 24, 25, and 31.. Admission: Adults: €3. Students, Children (over 6), and Bonn-Card holders: €1.50. Family ticket: €6.
- Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Friedrich-Ebert-Allee 4, . hosts permanently changing exhibitions which range from visual art and cultural history up to science and technology. Most of them are world class and definitely worth a visit.
- Deutsches Museum Bonn, Ahrstraße 45 (U-Bahn stop: Hochkreuz/Deutsches Museum Bonn), , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Tues. - Sun.: 10-18. Closed Mondays; Thursday before Fat Tuesday; Fat Tuesday (Shrove Tuesday); Good Friday; May 1; December 24, 25, and 31.. Admission: Regular: €4, Children (6 years+): €2.50, Family ticket: €7.
- Zoologisches Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig (Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig), Adenauerallee 160, , fax: , e-mail: [email protected]. Hours: Tue., Thurs. - Sun.: 10:00-18. Wed.: 10.00-21. Closed most Mondays (except on legal holidays); Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year's Eve. Zoological museum. Admission: Regular: €3, Discounter (Seniors, students): €1.50.
- Frauenmuseum, Im Krausfeld 10, 53113 Bonn. Tu. - Sat. 14-18, Sun. 11-18, closed on Mondays. The first museum in Europe dedicated to women and their work. Changing exhibitions. Adults €6, Students €3.
- Heimatmuseum Beuel, Wagnergasse 2-4, 53225 Bonn. Sat. & Sun. 15-18.Museum on local history. The museum was established in 1986 on the initiative of Beuel's Local Historical Society. Free.
- Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Colmantstr. 14-16, 53115 Bonn. Tu. - Fr. & Sun. 11 - 18, Sat. 13 - 18 , Mon. closed. Museum of art and archeology, run by the Rhineland Landscape Association.
Things to do
Music and Theatre
- Oper Bonn, Am Boeelagerhof 1 (next to Kennedy Bridge), . Hosts classical music concerts, opera and dance. Check their website for a recent playing schedule. You can get tickets at the Theaterkasse, Windeckstr. 1, next to Münsterplatz from M-Sa 9AM-6:30PM18.30, Sa 9AM-4PM. Box office opens 1 hour before the performance begins. Ticket prices are moderate, especially for students.
Most cinemas only show dubbed German versions of international films. Watch out in the program [www] for OV=Original Version or OmU=Original mit Untertiteln, means with German subtitles. Amongst the few cinemas which show English films on a regular basis are
- Kinopolis, Moltkestraße 7-9, Bad Godesberg (Train station Godesberg or line 16 to Bad Godesberg Bahnhof), . A functional multiplex in Bad Godesberg that shows one or two Films in the Original Version a day. Special prices Mon-W and for students.
- Brotfabrik, Kreuzstraße 16 (bus stop Kreuzstraße), . A small art cinema in Bonn Beuel that regular shows European films (also older ones) in the original version (not necessarily English)
- Rex, Frongasse 9 (Bus line 608, 609, 610, 611, get off at "Auf dem Hügel", 606 to Brahmsstrasse), . Arthouse cinema in Bonn Endenich (Frongasse 9) which regularly shows movies in the original version.
- Neue Filmbühne. Arthouse cinema in Bonn Beuel (Friedrich-Breuer Straße 68) which regularly shows movies in the original version.
Festivals and events
- Karneval. Enthusiastically celebrated in Bonn, especially on 11 November, the begin of the 'fifth season', and between Weiberfastnacht and Rosenmontag in February (peak time, the exact dates differ every year). The best parties are in Bonn Beuel at Bahnhöfchen and Rheinlust, be there early (and costumed, of course!). Bonn's central carneval parade (Karnevalszug) is on Monday (Rosenmontag), but there are also parades in the different suburbs where it is not so crowded and you might catch more sweets (Kamelle).
- Rhein in Flammen (Rhine in Flames). A big firework over the Rhine, usually on the first Saturday in May. The most popular spot to watch it is the Rheinauen, where a big fair with music and food stalls is taking place, although it can become very crowded. Another opportunity is to book a ship tour in advance (often with dinner), you will get tickets at the Brassertufer (Rhine promenade, near Kennedy Bridge). The next date for Rhein in Flammen in Bonn is 2016 May 7th.
- Beethovenfest, , fax: , e-mail:[email protected]. 2013 from Sept 5 till Oct 5. A month long music festival in September with numerous concerts held in Bonn and aroung the Siebengebirge region. Many international musicians are showcased during the festival.
- Pützchens Markt. A big fun fair with approximately 500 businesses in Bonn's suburb Pützchen which takes place in September for five days. You can catch buses at the main bus station next to the Hauptbahnhof. 2015, Pützchens Markt is from 11–15 September.
- Christmas Market. Starts at the end of November at Münsterplatz and Friedensplatz and the streets in between. The booths for mulled wine are a popular meeting place in the evening, but they close at 21.
Bonner Altstadt ('old downtown') in general is a good place to go out. Find a lot of small pubs and student bars in this district
- James Joyce, Mauspfad (near to Dreieck), . Irish pub in the city centre, atmospheric, good food, large variety of beers and whiskies, live sports.
- Tacos, Bonngasse 7 (same street as Beethovenhaus), .Popular Mexican Bar, Corona beer and great Cocktails. Happy Hour from 17-19.30h and 23.30-00.30h. Their food is also very good.
- Che Guevara, Münsterstraße 9 (street between H&M and Karstadt), . Mon-Th 19-1, Fr&Sat 19-3, Sun 18-1. Delicious cocktails, good atmosphere. Happy Hour Mon-Th 18.30-20.30, Fr&Sat 17-19 and Sunday, Cocktail €5,30.
- Mojito, Königstraße 9, . 18-?. Small and popular Cocktail bar, prices are moderate, they also have Pizza and Tapas. Very hot in the summer. Happy Hour 18-20: Cocktails €3,90 and Pizza €4,50.
- Cafe Pawlow, Heerstraße 64. Situated in the multicultural Nordstadt, an atmospheric place to have a beer in summer.
- Nyx, Vorgebirgsstraße 19. Another good place in the Nordstadt, especially in summer when they have a beergarden outside.
- Fiddler's Irish Pub, Frongasse 9, Bonn-Endenich. Fiddler's is an Irish Pub that serves traditional Irish fare. Events such as weekly Karaoke and Pub Trivia are popular with the student crowd. As a bonus for travelers, a good percentage of the staff will be native English speakers as well.
- Limes Musik-Cafe-Bonn, Theaterstraße 2. The Limes is a punkrockers bar, which shows special football (soccer) events of the famous German left football team 1. FC. St. Pauli Hamburg. Events such as concerts or readings are sometimes announced on the website. As a bonus for young travelers and backpackers, the people in the bar are very helpful and open minded.
- Shamrock Irish pub, Römerstraße 22, . Irish pub close to the city center.
Clubs and Discos
- Blow Up, Rathausgasse 10. Dive bar. Speciality is funk and 60s. It can get smokey and very hot when crowded.
- Carpe Noctem, Wesselstrasse 5 (near Hauptbahnhof). 22-5.Underground rock club with young patrons. Has occasional student parties boasting free entry and half-price drinks. If the club is packed, it will get uncomfortably hot. Dress light.
- Drei Raum Wohnung, Boeselagerhof 15 (opposite the opera). Loosely translates to "Three Room Apartment". Very interesting joint with two completely different atmospheres depending on where you are. The ground floor is a stylish lounge with mixed drink specialties that caters to the slightly older theater crowd. The basement has an open dance floor, cheap beer specials and a live DJ. The basement also has a "bedroom" and "living room" with seating to get away from the dance floor for a rest. The real crowd shows up here late with the dance floor usually not filling up until after 23:00.
- N8schicht, Bornheimer Str. 20-22. Open five days a week. Theme parties. Can also get smoky and hot when crowded.