The Jugendpark was developed in 2012 and offers all kinds of activities for kids and teens. Basketball and streetball courts, a football field, a BMX and skate park and swings can be used free of charge. For a small fee, you can also play minigolf or rent a ninepins alley for an hour. The organisation behind it all also offer table tennis tournaments, circus shows, music lessons and more.
Jugendpark, Sachsenbergstraße, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 221 8111v98
While the hands-off policy in most museums often makes it a dull experience for children, the Odysseum actively encourages touching and experimenting. The science park and adventure museum is packed with interactive learning stations that teach kids about natural sciences and technology. Children can uncover skeletons at an excavation site, hop into a flight simulator for a flight over Cologne or be spun around in the astronaut trainer.
Odysseum, Corintostraße 1, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 221 6906 8111
In the middle of Cologne’s beautiful Stadtwald, the Lindenthal Animal Park has an array of wildlife such as birds, donkeys, sheep, goats and deer. If you want to get a bit closer, you can buy suitable fodder at the entrance to the park – the tame animals will eat from the palm of your hand. The first Saturday of each month, you can join a free one-hour-long tour around the park and learn about its animals.
Lindenthal Tierpark, Kitschburger Strasse, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 1525 4548 851
A visit to Cologne’s first indoor trampoline park will take it out of your kids and possibly yourself. Jump House is sectioned into different areas – you can play basketball and dodgeball on one side and practise backflips and somersaults on extra large trampolines on the other. Extra fun is the American Gladiator joust game and the Ninja Warrior-like obstacle course.
Jump House, Köhlstraße 10, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 221 6430 4440
The Aqualand water park has large indoor and outdoor pools, jacuzzis and paddling ponds for small kids who want to splash about. But thrill-seeking teens and adults who prefer to shoot down waterslides at a head-spinning speed get their money’s worth too.
Aqualand, Merianstraße 1, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 221 70280
The museum is dream come true for chocolate fans. Visitors follow the cocoa bean from harvest to being moulded into chocolate bars which end up for sale in the shop at the exit. On the way, you can peek through glass windows and see each step of the production cycle, read about the history of chocolate and taste a sample at the chocolate fountain. Tours on Sundays are specifically designed for families.
Schokoladenmuseum, Am Schokoladenmuseum 1A, Cologne, Germany +49 (0) 221 9318 880