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  • Cologne’s Schildergasse is the most-visited shopping street in Germany.

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Monday, 26-07-2021,

Unusual shopping

You’re looking for unusual shopping tips and want to step off the beaten shopping track? We have a few tips for you!

Souvenirs and prezzies

Postcard shop
Inside the Walther König bookshop on Breite Straße you’ll find the postcard shop with around 50,000 postcards - the widest choice of postcards in the country. The artistic designs even go as far back as cave paintings! (city map - web - photos)

“4711 is one of the oldest and best-known brands in the world”, affirms Monika Hadrys. The manager of the long-standing House of Fragrances on Glockengasse welcomes around 60,000 visitors per year to her establishment, in which Eau de Cologne bubbles in a gold-plated fountain. Visitors come from all over the world – Japan, China, Russia, India. Fragrance workshops, where participants can mix their own Eau de Cologne, are offered in several different languages. more (city map - web - photos)

Printen Schmitz
Traditional gingerbread cookies, or ‘Printe’, with herbs, icing, choco-nut, choco-almond, chocolate, milk chocolate or with filling. A 4ft high cookie in the shape of the cathedral can be made to order in this traditional pastry shop. The city’s famous landmark can, however, also be enjoyed as a small gingerbread cookie. (city map - photos)

Historical mustard mill
Original Cologne mustard made with Kölsch beer is just one of the many types of mustard that miller Wolfgang Steffens produces with one of the world’s oldest mustard mills. As well as the Kölsch beer mustard, you can find jams, spreads, chocolates, sausage and herb liqueur – all made with mustard, of course! (city map - web - photos)

The speciality shop located in the Chocolate Museum is a real treasure trove of unusual sweet gifts. And it’s not just the 80 different types of chocolate that will capture your attention. Visitors will also be enticed by the organic chocolate bar with trout, chocolate slabs made with sheep’s milk for allergy sufferers, and an interesting twist on the typical chocolate Santa – chocolate Kölsch bottles. (city map - web - photos)

Cathedral Spekuloos
The pastry manufacturer "Kölner Dom-Spekulatius" – Cologne Cathedral Spekuloos – has opened its first shop on Wallraf-Platz. Here fans of the delicious speciality can stock up on the traditional Christmas treat all year round. From small packs of Spekuloos to large boxes, whether as a present or to enjoy yourself – here you’ll find Spekuloos for everyone. Different tins make the spicy delicacy with the cathedral imprint a truly authentic present and souvenir from the Cathedral City. (city map - web)


Quite possibly the world’s largest selection of boots from the 80s can be found at Subcouture on Hahnenstraße. Around 900 different models are permanently on display in the shop. In addition, you’ll find "Glitter-Glamour-Clothes for Party-People". (city map - photos)

A shop specialising only in skirts (German: Rock): Founded in 2006 by passionate skirt-wearer Sabine Berndt in Cologne-Ehrenfeld. Since then, the local lady has been designing a couple of new skirts every week. (city map - web - photos)

"The washing machines stay." On this condition as stated by the previous tenant, “RockOn” developed a very special type of shop in 2006: the Cleanicum. ‘Fresh clothes’ is given a double meaning here – both fresh from the drum as well as fresh from the shelves full of new street and boardwear. (city map - web - photos)

No longer the well-kept secret it used to be! Fashion bloggers have rated it the second best second-hand shop in Cologne. Entlarvt on Zülpicher Straße – literally teeming with exceptional items from decades past. (city map - web - photos)

Whether you’re looking for a red and white checked astronaut parka complete with embroidery, a handbag with a birdcage design and extra shoe pocket, underwear decorated with roses or striped hoodies for babies – you’ll find it all here. 1600 ft² of fashion, above and beyond the mainstream, just waiting to be discovered in the Belgian Quarter. With recognition value and celebrity factor! (city map - web - photos)

Eating and drinking

Balkhausen Bakery
As Cologne’s deputy mayor back at the time of the First World War, a certain Konrad Adenauer came up with the “Rhein black rye bread resembling wholemeal bread” made from cornmeal. Slightly modified, the Balkhausen bakery still sells Adenauer Bread today. (city map - photos)

Törtchen Törtchen
The cakes at Törtchen Törtchen in Cologne are about 8cm in diameter. One of the secrets of the confectioners is to always use only the very best ingredients – the almond flour for the sponge comes from Belgium and the fruit puree from France. (city map - web - photos)

Zimmermann Bakery
Rye, wholemeal, leaven, water, and salt – the Zimmermann bakery makes the best-known black bread in Cologne. Locals have appreciated the hearty-tangy bread delicacies since the bakery was founded back in 1885. (city map - web - photos)

Madame Miammiam
50 cm tall, four levels, decorated with green and white sugar snowdrops – that’s a cake from Madam Miammiam. The shop in the Belgian Quarter has been luring in lovers of all things sweet since 2007. There are also smaller irresistible cakes. (city map - web - photos)

Bärendreck Chemist
The owner has over 600 liquorice items from 20 countries on offer. To give you a few examples – spaghetti with a 3% content of the “black gold”, toothpaste with liquorice or even Australian condoms with liquorice. (city map - web - photos)

Wine sale with up to 900 items on offer, restaurant and cookery school with well-known starred chefs, as well as a renowned catering service. In addition to all this, a culinary range of local gift ideas. That’s Vintage – run by one of Germany’s best Sommelières. (city map - web - photos)

English Shop
Started as a small cornershop in 1993, the English shop next to Galerie Kaufhof department store in the city centre offers – in their own words – Germany’s largest range of products from the English-speaking world. (city map - web - photos)

Bits and Bobs

Erlenmeyer flask for drinking wine, street bins as a washing basket, tool bag as a bread bin? In Anna Lederer’s shop you’ll find industrial items for daily use – difficult to find in normal shops but very aesthetically pleasing and extremely practical. (city map - web - photos)

Australia Shop
Grab some crocodile meat, emu liver sausage and macadamia cream at Colin Truslove’s Australia Shop – and take part in a didgeridoo course at the same time. Particularly good for snorers, says the owner! (city map - web - photos)

Toys, colourful (children’s) clothing and accessories – everything Johanna Gruber sells comes from her native Scandinavian lands. If you want to make a real splash under the Christmas tree this year, try the hand-worked monkeys or the Pippi Longstocking dolls’ house. (city map - web - photos)

You need a quirky present? Then you’re in the right place at Lukas Plum’s shop. You’ll find coal irons from Senegal, hand-forged scissors made from bullet casings from Yemen, and Christmas candles from Peru. (city map - web - photos)

Be transported back to less hectic times while enjoying a delicious coffee, tea and home-made cakes in the Trödelcafé. And where’s the quirk? It’s not just the cake that’s on sale – but also the 1930’s café interior, from the dessert plates to the green sofa! (city map - photos)

Pattevugel (local dialect for paper kites) is synonymous with unusual toys and recreational sports goods far off the beaten track of classical toys and sports items. There are also numerous unusual gift ideas for all ages and of course stunt kites. (city map - web)

More exciting shopping tips in the book "111 Kölner Geschäfte, die man gesehen haben muss" (111 not-to-be-missed shops in Cologne).

Find out more: Shopping