Day 1 – Monday 02nd February 2015
It was an earlier than normal start departing Derby on the 07:06 train bound for Birmingham International Airport. After a little snooze on the quiet train and a quick, easy monorail ride from the station to the airport, I arrived into Birmingham International in good time for a coffee and to watch the planes take off! After a short flight of 1 hour and 15 we had arrived in Germany!
After picking up our hire car we headed for the centre of Cologne, not forgetting that we were driving on the right! Upon arrival, we walked just a few minutes to the Cathedral, and as Germany’s most visited landmark there were many tourists inside, marvelling at the construction. I had to get far back to take a photo and even then, could not fit the largest Gothic structure in Europe into the frame!
After enjoying a bag of hot roasted chestnuts bought from a nearby market stall we headed back to the small village of Altenberger to see Altenberger Dom. Like Cologne Cathedral, Altenberger Dom is one of the finest examples of pure Gothic style in Germany! Today, it is where musical and cultural performances take place throughout the year.
We departed Altenberger for an hour’s drive to Koblenz, a city situated on the banks of both the River Rhine and River Mossel. Where the rivers meet is known as Deutsches Eck (German Corner), and is where the huge equestrian Statue of German Emperor Wilhelm I stands tall. It’s a great city to be based in as it is right in the heart of the Rhineland! We settled in for the night at Hotel Scholz after a hearty meal of Schnitzel, Bratkartoffein (fried potatoes) and sauerkraut (cabbage!).
Looking forward to what tomorrow brings!