A Brief Guide To Cologne – Germany

Cologne
The city of Cologne (German: Köln) is one of the oldest and one of the largest cities in Germany. It is a real reflection of Germany’s history and the Cologne Dom (cathedral) is one of the grandest in Europe. Its population is estimated to be 1,000,000 and it is a hub for business, tourism, media and politics. Eurail pass travelers will enjoy the diversity of the city as information is readily available in various languages such as French, English, Spanish and Japanese. Although German is the official language used, the city is inhabited by numerous immigrants from other countries.History Of Cologne
A German tribe known as Ubii founded Cologne as a settlement site. By 50 AD, the Romans recognized the city and named it as Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium. In the Middle Ages, Cologne’s strategic location paved the way for economic growth. It became a major passageway for trading. Aside from this, the city basked in being the center for transport and harbor site. It became a free city under the sovereignty of the Holy Roman Empire. It was stripped off, however, of its stature as a free city due to its connection as a territory of the Holy Roman Empire during the French period. During World War II, the city suffered about 262 air raids which resulted to the death of 20,000 individuals. Post war, Cologne rebuilt the city through the growth of numerous media companies that support the economy of the city.

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Things To Do In Cologne
There are a lot of things to do in Cologne. One of its largest festivities is the Cologne Gay Pride. In its most recent event, almost 1 million people attended. The event is a party of music, fun and pride. Another most attended festivity is the Karneval/Fastelovend or the Winter Carnival, with a street parade popularized by the triad of a prince, a virgin and farmer. Must-see sites include Cologne Dom, a cathedral with amazing architecture and which offers a magnificent view of the Rhine River; Romisch-Germanische Museum and Kolnisches Stadtmuseum if you want to learn about Cologne’s history;  Museum Ludwig houses Picasso’s work; Imhoff-Stollwerck Museum is heaven for chocolate lovers.

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Getting To And Around Cologne
Tourists and other Eurail pass holders will not have a hard time getting in and out of Cologne. There are four major ways to visit the city: by bus, by plane, by train and by car. Getting around can be easier through its subway and tram system. One unique way to enjoy the city is to rent a bike. Cologne has a CALL-A-BIKE system made available for everyone.

How Does Drinking Alcohol Affect Your Eyes

Drinking alcohol can of cause effects to your entire body including your eyes. A low intake of alcohol shouldn’t cause you any health problems but drinking alcohol heavily can potentially cause health problems including harmful effects to your eyes.

Here are a few of the effects heavy drinking can have on your eye health.

Pupils

Alcohol can cause slow pupil reactions. It slows down the iris’ ability to dilate and constrict. This might not seem to be too much of a problem at first but if you have been drinking alcohol, even a small amount, and then drive your pupils won’t react as quickly to oncoming car headlights, therefore dazzling your vision which could cause an accident. So even if you have drunk alcohol and it is under the legal limit for driving and you feel fine to drive, think again about the other effects the alcohol is having on your vision.

Vision

Drinking alcohol can not only affect your pupils but also your general visual performance, especially if you have been drinking heavily. The alcohol can weaken the eye muscles which can cause blurred or double vision and also can cause delayed reactions.

Peripheral Vision

Not only can your general vision be affected after heavy alcohol consumption but your peripheral vision can change. Alcohol can sometimes lower your peripheral vision sensitivity and this can give the sensation of tunnel vision.

Contrast Sensitivity

Another way alcohol can affect your eyes is by making them less contrast sensitive. This means it can be harder to tell the difference between shade of grey.

Eye Lid Twitching

Eye lid twitching can be caused by many factors and one of these is a high intake of alcohol. If you suffer with eye lid twitching and drink heavily, try to lower your alcohol intake and see if your eye lid twitching improves.

Eye Dryness

A study carried out by the Hallym University College of Medicine indicated that drinking alcohol, even a small amount, reduced tear breakup time and induced tear hyperosmolarity which in turn can result in eye dryness.