While Berlin was cut off from the rest of West Germany during the Cold War, Bonn was the German capital. As a result of its standing, and rich history, Bonn is a city brimming with culture.
The historically and culturally rich city of Bonn
At first glance, Bonn looks too picturesque a city to have carried the burden of being Germany's Cold War capital. But until the majority of government departments and international embassies upped sticks and moved to the new capital of Berlin after the fall of the Wall in 1989, the university town was the seat of power at that unpredictable time.
If you venture out of the city center, you will see the architecture Bonn offered its international guests in the form of many grand buildings that now house businesses and private residents alike.
Museum Mile the main attraction
Out in the area which served the diplomatic community during the Cold War years, visitors will find the city's main attraction for art and culture amateurs from all over the world: the Museum Mile. Along a stretch easily reached by public transport, culture vultures can take in a series of museums and galleries within walking distance of each other as well as the Rhine promenade and the green belt of the Rheinaue leisure park.
The Beethovenhaus in Bonn
As well as the museums on the Mile, many of the homes of Bonn citizens are also open to tourists: the home of painter August Macke, the composer Schumann's house, the home of intellectual and poet Ernst Moritz Arndt and, of course, the birthplace of Bonn's most famous citizen, Ludwig van Beethoven.
Beethoven's birthplace honors its favorite son
Bonn's most famous son is the focus of most music related trips to the city. As the city in which Beethoven was born in 1770, Bonn honors the composer with the Beethoven Orchestra, and the annual International Beethoven Festival season.
For those looking for something more contemporary, Bonn offers a package of summer rock concerts and festivals with the Museumplatz playing host to many big name acts every year.
A center of theater
The musical and artistic heritage of Bonn is complimented by its theatrical pedigree. The Bonn Theater has developed a fine reputation and the Bonn Biennial theater season attracts enthusiasts from all over the world. Bonn also boasts its own open-air summer festival which has been running annually since 1971.
The city is a great base for trips down the Rhine, the wine region of the Mosel and the nearby natural splendor of the Siebengeberge and Eiffel regions.