In the west of Germany lies the city of Cologne. The famous cathedral is the first thing you will notice gracefully, hovering up above the horizon, whilst the River Rhine runs right through the city. Cologne is a cultural hub in the west of Germany, and the University of Cologne is one of the oldest universities across all of Europe. The charm of this city is led by its inhabitants who are well known for being relaxed and happy, though the culture and history of the city is enough of a draw in itself. With a population of over 1 million people, Cologne has a large Muslim community, who hail mainly from a Turkish background, and also the largest Jewish population throughout all of Germany. Having always been an important city for trade in Europe, the city has benefited from globalization, combining the rich past with an exciting future.
The city of Cologne benefits from one of the warmest climates across the country, experiencing cool winters and warm summers. Despite this, Cologne also experiences a great deal of cloud cover throughout the year, and has the fewest hours of sun each month of all German cities. The summers run from May through to August with high temperatures reaching up to 30°C, but the winter nights can get chilly, with temperatures getting as low as freezing between November and February. During the winter, the city benefits from the cloud cover stopping the temperatures dropping too low, but the gentle breeze of the Rhine River becomes an icy blast in the coldest months. Rainfall is consistent throughout the year.
As in any city, accommodation in Cologne is expensive, particularly in the city center. The process can be made particularly expensive by having to pay a letting agent an additional fee, often of one or two months’ rent in order to find a suitable apartment in the right price range. Many people who move to Cologne for work choose to live in the city of Bonn, commuting into Cologne - this is so they can enjoy the benefits of cheaper living, whilst still residing in a city. Transport routes between the two cities are very efficient. If you are set on living closer to the city of Cologne itself, it is advisable to find somewhere that is on the subway or tram network, as this is the best way of getting around the city. Some areas around the city which are ideal for families moving to Cologne would be Sülz, Klettenberg, Lindenthal, or Südstadt, as these have good public transport routes into the city, but are more reasonably priced.