We took a trip with a group of other people from the University to Dusseldorf, which is the capital of the German state of North Rhine Westphalia (also the state we live in). The trip was organized by the university's international office. We stayed in a youth hostel, which was much nicer than we expected!
While we were there, we went on several guided tours...one of the history of the city and it's architecture, and another in the state parliament. At the parliament, we got to sit in on a session and watch the politicians debate. It was kind of ridiculous actually...one would be giving a speech and everyone else would be reading a newspaper, laughing with their friends, talking on their cell phone...anything but listening to the person speaking. I'm sure some things are common all over the world.
Dusseldorf is right on the Rhine river, which is really nice. There was a line of houses facing the river that were amazing...no telling how much it would cost to live there.
Another can't miss part of Dusseldorf was königsallee (The king's alley). There you can find some of the most high-end shopping in Germany, complete with a man playing classical violin in the street. The jewelery stores had bodyguards at the entrance! We saw one necklace that was 91,000 euros. We got a kick out of just looking at the outrageous prices of things, especially the clothing. I have a theory that high-end clothing designers have a secret competition going on, to see who can make the worst looking clothing and charge the most for it. People sure will pay big money for a big name....
Dusseldorf was a really nice place. It had everything that a large city has, while still being unique and quaint like a town.