Cologne Cathedral

Dominating the skyline of Cologne, Germany is their world famous cathedral: Kölner Dom. By far their most famous landmark for hundreds of years, the Cologne cathedral is part of the Roman Catholic Church and hosts the Archbishop of Cologne. One of the most interesting things about cathedral Koln is just how long it took to complete it. The construction initially started in 1248, but due to multiple halts in building, it took more than 600 years before the cathedral was complete.

Originally built on the site of a Roman temple, Cologne Cathedral is an amazing feat of both beauty and architecture. Its twin towers stretch an incredible 515 feet in the air. For a few years after completion, until the finish of the Washington Monument, the structure of Cologne cathedral was the tallest in the world. It still remains the tallest gothic building in the world. Meanwhile, the interior of this German cathedral is absolutely massive. The space inside is the equivalent to over six hundred houses. The cathedral Koln has twelve bells, including the bell of St. Peter; weighing in at 24 tons, it's the largest free-swinging bell in the world. Needless to say, the support structure of Cologne cathedral is quite strong.

Given the size and age of the structure of Cologne Cathedral, construction is perpetually underway somewhere on the church. It suffered 14 hits throughout World War II by Allied bombers but it did not collapse and by 1956 the restoration was complete.

Perhaps the most famous relic enshrined within cathedral Koln is the Sarcophagus of the Magi. This great sarcophagus is from the 13th century and is considered to be the largest reliquary in the western world. The sarcophagus is thought to hold the remains of the three wise men. Also of note in the church is an altar painting of the city's patron saints as well as Gero Cross, the oldest crucifix in Northern Europe.

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