HALLO, KÖLN!

5/14-15/2016

I tagged along with a friend and made it to Cologne this weekend! What a beautiful and amazing city—not to mention it’s the oldest city I’ve ever been in. Catherine, my fellow traveler, studies archaeology, so she was able to give me lots of important background about the city’s Roman roots and history in general. It’s crazy to think that it’s been here for so long!

Of course, being the kinds of travelers we are, we managed to get on the wrong train in the morning, but it ended up working out in our favor when we arrived in the city almost an hour earlier than planned. Thanks to the timing, we just so happened to be there when a big crowd of football fans was marching through the stadium!

Let’s plan on staying in tonight?

Let’s maybe plan on staying in tonight?

From there, of course, the next thing that caught our attention was…

The Dom!

The Dom!!!

Amazing, magnificent, weathered, and partially bombed during WWII, this was probably the biggest and most beautiful building I’ve ever been in. We wandered around inside, then climbed a total of 532 stairs to the top of the right tower!

We were in the one without the scaffolding.

We were in the one without the scaffolding.

Our legs were definitely feeling it, and those tiny spiral staircases are no joke, but there were railings, closed windows, and fencing at the top, so we were in no danger of falling off. 😉

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After posing in front of the cathedral…

Thanks to Catherine for the awesome snapshot!

Thanks to Catherine for the awesome snapshot!

It was time for some lunch!

…It was time for some lunch!

We went to Café Reichard, a restaurant that’s been across from the cathedral for over 150 years (first opening in November of 1855!). The trip was made extra-special, though, by the knowledge that an aunt of mine had worked here for a summer, 22 years ago!

This one’s for you, Danielle!

This one’s for you, Danielle!

The food was delicious, of course—what else would you expect from a business that’s been around for so long? 😉

And, yes, obviously we ate dessert…

And, yes, obviously we ate dessert…

After eating, we continued our walking tour of the city, finally making it to…

The Chocolate Museum!

The Chocolate Museum!

There was…

A LOT of chocolate. :D

A LOT of chocolate. 😀

I bought a bar from a Schokoladautomat (chocolate vending machine) for 1€, but at first the machine just ate my Euro, without dispensing chocolate!

Fortunately, we were able to get it all figured out in the end. Yum!

Fortunately, we were able to get it all figured out in the end. Yum!

Some more walking later, we decided it was time to shop

I’ve wanted to buy a dress since arriving in Europe. Scored at H & M, and for just 15, too!

I’ve wanted to buy a dress since arriving in Europe. Scored at H & M, and for just 15€, too!

This game. Now that it’s being released in the U.S., I don’t NEED to buy it in Europe, but I got to hold it. Euphoria.

This game. Now that it’s being released in the U.S., I don’t NEED to buy it in Europe, but I got to hold it. Euphoria!!

Has anyone out there tried a Butter Laugenstange? Because they are my absolute new favorite things!

Has anyone out there tried a Butter Laugenstange? Because they are my absolute new favorite things!

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My pal Catherine stayed the night with a friend, and I crashed at a cozy little hostel on the outskirts of town.

It was great, but so nondescript that it was hard to spot from the outside!

It was great, but so nondescript that it was hard to spot from the outside!

We’d planned to meet up the following afternoon, so I spent the morning in Museum Ludwig, which the hostel owner had highly recommended. It wasn’t quite what I was in the mood for, but I still got to see some cool things!

Like this—my new favorite out of anything, anywhere. (I stared at it for over ten minutes...)

Like this—my new favorite out of anything, anywhere. (I stared at it for over ten minutes…)

I got to see a Pollack, too!!

I got to see a Pollack, too!!

The rest of the morning was spent strolling the city…

...and staring at its beautiful buildings, like the old Rathaus (city hall)!

…and staring at its beautiful buildings, like the old Rathaus (city hall)!

Some snacks, a late lunch, and a salad-bar stop later, we were on our bus and headed home. Bye to my new favorite city! And thanks for the great times. ❤

Did you miss us, Mannheim?

Did you miss us, Mannheim?

xoxo,

Susan

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