Bonn It was the capital of the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) until 1990, the year in which Berlin It was once again the capital of Germany after the reunification process, and hosted the seat of government until 1999. Today, this city, located in the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia and very close to Cologne, has something more 300.000 inhabitants

Bonn is the birthplace of the composer Ludwig van Beethoven, and is a city with a marked university character. In fact, the University of Bonn is one of the most prestigious in Germany and has among its famous figures such as Karl Marx and seven Nobel Prize winners. But the former capital of the FRG is also a city where you can enjoy nature thanks to the presence of the river Rhine and from which you can take beautiful day trips.

Find out what to do in and around Bonn thanks to HAPPY CAR, one of the best car rental comparators in Europe.

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History of Bonn: a two-thousand-year-old city

Bonn celebrated its 2000 anniversary in 1989, a fact that accounts for its long history. They say that the Celtic peoples already inhabited this area on the banks of the Rhine and that, later, the Romans built the first infrastructures in an area called Bonn around 12 BC

The city as such was born around the year 9 BC when a Roman legionary camp was established in the north of Bonn. Later, with the rise of the Carolingian Empire, Bonn became an important religious center and was razed twice in AD 882 in several skirmishes by the Vikings in the Rhineland area.

During the thirteenth and eighteenth centuries it was established in Bonn the residence of the prince-electors archbishops of Cologne. It was during those years, when the city experienced great architectural splendor when emblematic buildings such as the Bonner Münster (St. Martin's Cathedral), the Popelsdorf castle or the main headquarters of the university were built.

After Napoleon's defeat in 1815, new balances were established in Europe. As a consequence, Bonn passed into Prussian hands. It was then, in 1818, when King Frederick William III of Prussia founded the University of Bonn, which became one of the most important academic centers in the kingdom. In fact, it was the preferred place for royalty to study.

After the IGM, Canadian, British and French soldiers settled in Bonn. In the Nazi era, many citizens of the city, political opponents and Jews for the most part, suffered from the policies of extermination or had to go into exile.

The division of Germany into the FRG and the GDR (German Democratic Republic) after WWII, brought with it the capital of the country to this city. In 1949, at the initiative of Konrad Adenauer and against expectations, Bonn became the capital against the candidacy of Frankfurt. As a consequence, a great diplomatic activity developed in the city, since it attracted the embassies of a large number of countries, and economically, when large state companies such as Deutsche Post (Correos) and Deutsche Telekom were established in the city.

To this day, Bonn continues to maintain great prestige at the diplomatic level. The city is the headquarters of the UN in Germany and the center of international environmental policy developed by this body worldwide.

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What is the best time to go to Bonn

Bonn is one of the cities with the most temperate climate in all of Germany. In winter, the temperatures remain stable and it hardly snows a couple of times a year. On the other hand, in July and August there is an average of 18 ° C. One of the reasons for the mild climate in Bonn is due to the presence of the Rhine, which helps to cushion the cold in winter and the heat in summer.

Our best times to travel to Bonn they are spring-summer and autumn. With few exceptions, the temperature during spring and summer is quite pleasant and it does not rain too much, a fact that allows you to enjoy the banks of the Rhine and the green areas of the city. For its part, in autumn the city acquires a majesty that is difficult to describe and that is palpable in the different forests around the Rhine.

Bonn - City Center at night in winter
Bonn - City Center at night in winter
(c) Can Stock Photo

How to get to Bonn

Get to Bonn By plane: it is one of the best options. Just over 15 minutes by car is the Cologne-Bonn airport, to which a significant number of companies fly from the main Spanish cities. Another option is to fly to Dusseldorf International Airport, from which Bonn can be reached in under an hour and a half with a rental car.

Get to Bonn by rail: Bonn can also be reached by train, thanks to its good location in central Europe. Bonn is well connected to cities such as Berlin, Hamburg, Amsterdam and Paris

Get to Bonn drive: is a good option thanks to the extensive Autobahn network. If you have a rental car, Bonn can become the nerve center from which to visit a large number of nearby cities such as Cologne, Dusseldorf, Dortmund, Königswinter or Koblenz.

How to get around Bonn

Getting around in Bonn is easy as it is a very manageable city that does not have long distances.

  • Getting around in Bonn in public transport system: the Stadtwerke Bonn (SVB) or public transport system is made up of metro (u-Bahn), tram (S-Bahn), trains and buses. The prices for the single ticket are between 1,70 and 2,10 euros, depending on the area in which you travel.
  • Getting around in Bonn drive: It is the best option when you want to go on excursions along the Rhine Valley and visit towns such as Königswinter or Koblenz. It is very easy to rent a car in Bonn, thanks to the presence of a large number of local and international companies. If you want, you can compare all the offers of the companies present through HAPPY CAR.
  • Getting around in Bonn cycling: Bonn is a flat city that invites the inhabitants to use the bicycle when the good weather arrives. You can reach almost any point in the city in just 20 minutes. In addition, there are private bicycle rental services.
Bonn - Poppelsdorf Palace
Bonn - Poppelsdorf Palace
(c) Can Stock Photo

What to visit in Bonn

If you decide to travel to Bonn, these are the places you cannot miss:

  • The Museum of Contemporary History of Germany: it has one of the best exhibitions of contemporary history in the country and, every semester, you can enjoy exhibitions on the culture and current society of the German country.
  • Rheinaue Park: on the banks of the Rhine, it is a perfect place to enjoy nature, walk, run or have a barbecue near its lakes.
  • La beethoven house: place where the composer was born and which is dedicated to his life.
  • The Bonner Münster: Romanesque in style, it is the main Catholic temple in Bonn.
  • Altes Rathaus: the old town hall in whose square a flea market is held every day.
  • The Botanical Garden: has Amorphophallus titanum as its emblem.
  • The Zoologisches Museum Konig: a zoological museum for the little ones to enjoy.
  • The castle of Popelsdorf: ordered to be built by Clement Augustus of Bavaria and currently under the ownership of the university.
  • The Bundeskunsthalle or art exhibition hall.
  • The Sterntor: rest of the medieval wall.
  • The Arithmeum: museum of the history of mathematics.

Strolling and nature in Bonn

One of the best things about Bonn is strolling through the center of the city. The open character of its people will invite you to enjoy a fairly well-preserved center that has a large number of shops, restaurants and bars. If the weather is good, do not hesitate to have an ice cream or a bönnsch or kölsch, the local beers. Also, did you know that Bonn is one of the cities in Germany with the highest number of international food restaurants per person?

Culture is undoubtedly a great attraction in Bonn and the existence of a large number of museums confirms this. In fact, there is an area of ​​the city called Museumsmeile, or museum mile.

Another of the sights of Bonn, is without a doubt the Rhine and all the nature that surrounds it. The Rheinaue park is an example of this, but the Drachenfels (Dragon Rock) mountain in Königswinter is also worth a visit. There you can enjoy vineyards that climb the hillside and the remains of the castle, from which you can glimpse a good part of the Rhine Valley as it passes through Bonn and Cologne.

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