Bus Rides and AirBnB Check-in
We took the bus from Utrecht to Cologne in the morning. We had to wait a little while in the rain, about 30 minutes. When our bus came, the driver was weirdly strict. He wouldn’t let me have both my handbag (satchel size) and backpack, we also had to put our small bag full of food in the luggage section. We just watched TV shows the whole time. When we got to the station we realized that our connecting train had gone just minutes before, so we had to wait for a little while again. A group of ladies (I assumed hens party) came up to us asking us for money; apparently it was for a concert ticket, in return for your money, the hen and her friends would sing Spice Girls in-front of you. It was too embarrassing for me so I said no.
Our host said to meet them after 4, so when we got to the neighbourhood we just went and got a coffee and shared a berry crumble cake. I got a text message as soon as we had sat down and it was the hosts saying they were home early. We caught the short tram ride to the apartment and on the way Ricky made friends with a toothless local with a buttermilk addiction.
When we arrived our hosts were super friendly! We dropped our bags, had a chat then went for a short walk; it started to rain so we went to the supermarket to get food. That night we just did bookings and looked up where we should go next.
Koeln Triangle, Hohenzollern Bridge, and More Churches
We woke up around 10, made some breakfast and then headed out to explore. We didn’t know how to buy tram tickets (didn’t realise that the machine is actually in the tram), so as soon as we spotted tram guards get onto the tram we got off. We then had to walk about 2kms.
Our first stop was Koeln Triangle which is the viewpoint of the city. It was about 3EU to get in (cheaper if you have a student card) and the view you get are awesome! They even have small pictures of each iconic building on the glass as you walk around so you know what you are looking at.
We walked across the Hohenzollern bridge ( you can see it behind us in the photograph). You can’t tell, but when you actually walk across the bridge you can see how many love locks are there. Some are big and some designs are nuts. We saw books, fish, hooks, you name it.
We stopped in the park to each our homemade sandwiches and we had a quick look at the front of St Martin’s Church. That day Croatia was playing Turkey in the Football, so when we walked through the historic centre every café was full. We went and saw the famous Café Reichard ; it was fancy, and of course expensive.
Our favourite site of the day was Cathedral Dom; even the name sounds epic. Words cannot describe how small the outside made you feel, it was the biggest church I’ve ever seen. It was just as nice inside, but the outside was something else.
We walked the 2kms to St Gereon’s Church but it turned out that it was closed. Conveniently it also started pouring down. We waited about 30 minutes before giving up and running for the train station. At night we did some work, then went to the local park with our Hosts to watch the Football. It was Poland Vs. Northern Ireland (1-0). They are Polish and I’m Irish so it was nice to watch. After the game we came home quickly too cook dinner then went straight back out to watch Germany Vs. Ukraine (2-0) Ricky was supporting Ukraine deep in enemy territory.
On Mondays, Everything is closed
We did some food shopping in the morning and attempted to see what we could do to make our last day count, turns out everything is closed on Mondays. This includes, Pantaleon Church, Augustburg Palace and FalkenLust Hunting Lodge. We were thinking about Altenberger Dom but it was too far away. The weather was still a bit shitty but we ventured out into the city and got a nougatbretzel (average) and Berliner (really good). We just looked at shops, found a Legoland and then ran back home when it started to pour down.
That night was pretty chill just planning and writing.
Sparkasse Bank – no Charge for Citibank Cards
Trams – You can buy your ticket on the Tram; also tram guards wear red hats.