1. Rugen Island
Located in the Baltic Sea, Rugen Island is the largest island in Germany, connected to the mainland by the Rugen Bridge and Rugen Causeway. Charming villas, romantic seaside resorts and beautiful beaches all draw tourists to Rugen Island, but the star attraction is the Jasmund National Park, famous for its unique chalk cliffs rising 528 feet (161 meters) over the sea. Another notable feature of Rugen Island is Cape Arkona, East Germany’s northernmost tip, where tourists can visit an old lighthouse, remnants of a Slavic castle and a picturesque fishing village.
Situated on the Rhine River in the German federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia, Cologne is one of the most popular places to visit in Germany. The city offers a vibrant array of attractions, buzzing nightlife and a stellar arts and culture scene. Cologne also packs impressive landmarks such as the city’s informal symbol, the Cologne Cathedral, a stunning Gothic church. Moreover, the Twelve Romanesque Churches are magnificent examples of medieval architecture.
Pack your finest pair of lederhosen and get down to one of Germany's most famous festivals. Munich's annual Oktoberfest beer festival - which actually begins in September - is a celebration of one of Germany's most successful exports. From weiss wheat beers to alt dark ales, you'll be able to sample any type of tipple that takes your fancy. You're best to book early though, as tourists flock here from all over the world to raise a glass and get merry; check Skyscanner for the best deals on hotels in Munich.
4. Düsseldorf Altstadt
The Altstadt (Old Town) region in Düsseldorf is full of great bars, restaurants and nightclubs. It's the place to try the region's famous alt beer, a type of dark ale, brewed in many local, traditional German breweries around the city. One of the most famous is Uerige which employs Düsseldorf's only beer sommelier. Clear your head after all those brews with a stroll along the Rhein River, before grabbing a plate of Rheinischer Sauerbraten (marinated beef with raisins) in one of the waterfront restaurants.
5. Dresden's art galleries
Not widely known for it's art galleries, Dresden is a great place to check out German art, without the queues and crowds. The Staatliche Kunstsammlungen, or Dresden art collections, began life as the private artworks owned by Germany's 16th century aristocrats and today holds priceless pieces from all over Europe. The collections are spread across a number of galleries in Dresden, including the New Masters Gallery, the Royal Place and the Museum of Decorative Arts. Make a day of it and pack a picnic to enjoy in the gallery grounds.
Berlin is an edgy city, from its fashion to its architecture to its charged political history. The Berlin Wall is a sobering reminder of the hyper-charged postwar atmosphere, and yet the graffiti art that now covers its remnants has become symbolic of social progress. Check out the Weltzeituhr (world time) Clock, topped by a model of the solar system, then turn back time by dining at the historic Zur Letzten Instanz, a 16th century restaurant that was frequented by Napoleo