One of my favorite parts of living overseas is how quickly the need to travel can be satiated. After sitting around in Amsterdam over the last few weekends, the travel-bug in us was making itself known. So Amir did a little digging & found us some cheap train tickets to Germany!
Since I like to have at least some kind of a plan when I travel, here’s what we ended up doing over our weekend!
Our train was set to depart at 4:35 pm from Amsterdam Centraal, which is about 30 minutes away from our apartment. Amir & his co-worker were going to be coming straight from work, so we decided it would be easiest for us all to meet at Centraal.
When we got on the train we noted there was a variety of seating choices. There were single seats and clustered seats for families to sit together. We got lucky and snagged the family seating & proceeded to spend the next 2.5 hours reading/playing with Sofia/enjoying the train ride.
With little worry about having to drive or deal with traffic, the train was a dream! We made it into the major Cologne station about 7:45 pm and walked across the street to check into our hotel. The convenience of the hotel + free wifi + the reasonable price, made the Wyndham the perfect choice. After dropping off our stuff, we grabbed a bite to eat and then called it a semi-early night.
We started our day with a stroll over to the Cologne Cathedral. It’s a gorgeous, gothic-styled building — and it is HUGE. I had to bust out the panorama lens for this picture, haha.
Since we had Sofia with us, the guys decided they would come back later in the day to climb up the spires. We enjoyed a leisurely stroll through the inside of the Cathedral and then made our way over to the Belgian Quarter.
The day was perfect for enjoying being outside, so we slowly crawled through the shopping areas of the Belgian Quarter. The sights, the yummy smells, and the people watching were perfect.
Later, we made our way to the Schokoladenmuseum. Who in their right mind would skip a chocolate museum, am I right?
We saw the machinery that is used for processing chocolate and even got to try some. The whole place reminded me of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory! And the smells? Omg, incredible. I’d like to have a re-do of this museum every weekend, haha.
After all the chocolate eating, Amir & our friend decided to check out the Cathedral spires while I went back to the hotel with Sofia. I spent the evening reading & being lazy, which was exactly what I needed!
Sunday was zoo day! The weather was cold & crisp, so it was the perfect time to bring Sofia for her first zoo experience. I would recommend this zoo to anyone. The place is built into a huge park which made the walk beautiful. They also have incredible facilities for the animals which made me very happy!
We spent quite a few hours exploring and letting Sofia enjoy seeing all the animals before heading back to the city center to catch our train!
Another quick 2.5 hour train ride later, we were back in Amsterdam and on the tram back home.
If we make it to Cologne again, I want to see the 4711 Flagship store where you can make your own perfumes and I’d love to do a Rhine river cruise! And, of course,
maybe definitely go back to the chocolate museum, haha!
Linking up with B today.