Through the Upper Middle Rhine Valley to Brühl, Cologne, Aachen and Essen

Length: approx. 370 km – We recommend three or four overnight stays.

The Upper Middle Rhine Valley World Heritage is already a fine route in itself, thanks to its magnificent river scenery and extraordinary wealth of cultural attractions. Beginning in the historical wine-making towns of Bingen and Rüdesheim, your route takes you along the Rhine to Koblenz and then to Brühl. Here you’ll find Augustusburg Palace and Falkenlust hunting lodge with their wonderful gardens.

These two rococo gems bear witness to the architecture and opulence of the 18th century as fully preserved ensembles that are remarkable in their completeness.

After around 15 kilometres, you reach Cologne, the focal point of the region, which has many fine museums of international standing and a vibrant cultural scene to go along with its world-famous cathedral. Another cathedral – and one that’s over 1,200 years old – awaits in your next stop of Aachen, near theborder with Holland and Belgium.

Through the heart of the Ruhr region, Germany’s former coalmining heartland, the route brings you to the your final stop, Essen, where a visit to the monumental Zollverein coal mine provides a fascinating insight into a chapter of industrial heritage.