Travel | Adventures in Cologne

#TravelswithYasmin. Cologne, Germany.

This weekend I busted out the old travelling boots and headed to the beautiful city of Cologne. I took the train from Rotterdam, the Netherlands to Cologne, Germany to visit my lovely friend Ella, who has been interning there for the past 4 months. It also seemed like the perfect opportunity to head out of the old surroundings for a while and experience something new.

I believe in nourishing the mind and body, and what better way to do this than to explore and discover something completely new. Oh Europe, you really do do the nourishing justice with a 2 hour train ride bringing me from one country to another. Yes America, that quickly!

While I spent my train ride to Germany editing content and listening to some ravishing, motivational music (playlist coming soon), the feeling of heading to a different country was so refreshing. I felt like a little girl who experienced her first train ride. I have travelled to many places in my lifetime, but being at an age where I have the independence and awareness to experience this all so vivdly is amazing. Yes ladies and gentlemen, that’s what travelling does to you, it turns you back into your little, excited kid self, and it’s an incredible feeling.

Upon arriving in Germany I realised that the 4 years of German I had during my high school days were complete bulls***. I remembered as little as my name is Yasmin, thank you and bye. Although people think Dutch and German are quite similar, in my world they are not, and I’m pretty good when it comes to languages.

I (also) believe that a photo speaks a thousand words, and therefore I have put together this photo diary of my time in Cologne (with the occasional narration, because you know me, I always have a lot to say and share). To speak a thousand words more, I filmed my whole journey with the extensive piece of metal that is my iPhone 5S. ENJOY!

Welcome to Cologne

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

Ella picked me up from the station and welcomed me to city that has been her home for the past few months.

Stepping into the old trams, we headed to her place just outside of the city center. Ella lives on the 5th floor right across from this large, local church. As beautiful as it is, there is no sleeping in on the weekends with the large bell waking up the neighbourhood in the morning.

Cologne Cathedral

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

When stepping out of Cologne Station your eyes meet the outstanding architecture that is Cologne Cathedral. This cathedral, better known as the Dom, is the largest Gothic church in Northern Europe and has the second-tallest spiers (thank you Wikipedia). While nearly breaking my neck to get the complete view of this beauty, I couldn’t help but wonder “HOW?”.

This cathedral was built in 1280, a time where cranes, sturdy ladders and bob the builder were not existent, yet the detailing and height of the church is impeccable. Well done Dom, you really had me flabbergasted!

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

River Rhine

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

Similar to the river Thames in London, the Rhine streams from the Netherlands all the way though the city of Cologne to Switzerland. Rivers and cities, that can only mean one thing, a stroll along the canal! Students playing music, bikers weaving their way through the crowd and foreigners that want to sell you flowers, all that can be found along the bank of the river!

Also, sharing my go-to traveling shopper, this I travel the world bag from Nationality Unknown. *This is by no means sponsored, I just love being able to share the things I love and use often.

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

Panorama, KölnTriangle

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

In every city there’s that large building with the best view point of the city, this is it, the Panorama. Paying only €3 to reach the 28th floor, the view is stunning. A quick walk around and you’re done in 10 minutes. We, on the other hand, are real travellers and wanted to get the full on photography and mindful experience.

When turning to one side, you are overlooking the Cologne Cathedral, Hohenzollern bridge, musical dome and far in the distance Colonius, Cologne’s telecommunications tower. Turn 180º and you face the Bergisches land, a low mountain range region east of the Rhine River. Now that’s something you won’t see in the Netherlands (flattest country in the world)!

Hohenzollern Bridge

This huge bridge, known for its three arches, crosses over the Rhine river and connects the Köln Hauptbahnhof, Cologne train station and Köln Messe/Deutz, Cologne’s junction station. The place to be to watch the fireworks on New Years Eve, which I’ve heard are magnificent.

The Hohenzollern bridge used to be accessible by car and train, can now only hold trains and pedestrians. This led the bridge to becoming the new Pont Des Arts, the famous love lock bridge in Paris, bringing looveeeee to the city of Cologne. Along the bridge you can find thousands of love locks added by people from all around the world. The colour red certainly was a favourite, obviously, but I think I’d go for a bright yellow or even green, something that will stand out and be “easier” to find in the long run.

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

Ehrenfeld

Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis
Cologne, Germany, Yasmin Wilnis

Ehrenfeld is a city district located in the east of Cologne. It is very much known for it’s artsy neighbourhoods and can be recognised by its lanmark, the Helios-lighthouse. When walking through the district, you get a sense of the creative people living their and expressing their art on various buildings throughout Ehrenfeld, grafitti being a art form.

Cologne was targeted and bombed in the Second World War, and Ehrenfeld became a sanctuary for enemies of the Nazi regime. Although you don’t immediately recognise the damage of the war, old does meet new with modern houses being built across from old churches and homes. It does lie very close to home, as Rotterdam is in that same stage of rebuilding and opening their doors to modern architecture.

What do you love about travelling?
Let me know in the comments below as I love reading and reacting to what you have to say!

“You lose sight of things…and when you travel, everything balances out.”
– Daranna Gidel

Keep dreaming and believing!

Love, Y x

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