With an appearance that resembles something straight out of a fairy tale, the German town of Cochem is arguably one of the prettiest towns in the entire country. With a population of roughly 5,000, this small town is also one of the most pedestrian-friendly. Indeed, the vast majority of the town can be covered completely on foot.
Situated along the banks of the Moselle, Cochem has been settled since the time of the early Romans. The town’s rich history includes a bout with the feared plague in 1423, constant siege during the Thirty Years War, and a shift to French rule in 1794.
Sadly, like many German towns, Cochem was heavily damaged during the Second World War. Fortunately, enough of the historic Old Town survives to make Cochem a worthy tourist destination in its own right; a shining example of some incredible Medieval German architecture.
Your River Cruise Ship Docks …
There’s no worrying about how to get around in Cochem; river cruise ships dock right in the center of town.
When in Cochem …
Like many small towns, some of the joy of being in Cochem can be simply getting lost in the winding, cobblestone streets. It’s as close as you can get to stepping back in time! A few great ways to spend your day here:
- Wine Tasting – Cochem and its surrounding hills and valleys are home to a number of excellent vineyards, most of which offer extensive tours and tastings. In mid-June, a Wine Tasting Week is even offered right in Cochem, with over three hundred different wines available to sample.
- Cochem Imperial Castle – The Reichsburg Cochem has existed now for almost a thousand years. It was first mentioned in 1130, and was occupied twenty one years later by King Konrad III, who declared it an imperial castle. Louis XIV’s troop overran the castle in 1688 as part of the Nine Years’ War. Today, the castle is the perfect example of an imposing Medieval fortress, and a must-see.
- Rent a Bike – Cochem is beautifully situated to cycling, with its cobblestone streets and picturesque countryside. Many bicycle rental outlets are available throughout the town. Try it; it can be a fantastic – and scenic – experience.
River Cruisers Should Know!
- The currency in Germany is the Euro (€).
- Crime of any sort is generally not an issue in Cochem; still, it pays to exercise the same degree of caution you would in any city or town.
- Knowledge of basic German can go a long way. While most people should speak at least some English, this may not always be the case in smaller towns like Cochem.