We relaxed alot in Cologne, and also climbed to the top of the Dom Cathedral (I am not afraid of heights, but I actually did start to get a little nervous as we got to the top--- it is so big!). We did a Rhine River tour on Tuesday and stopped in St Goar, Germany and toured some castle remains. The river ride was really nice-- until we started the train journey back to Cologne
. We seem to have bad luck with the trains here. Long story short for the train situation- our plan was to take the train from Bacharach, to Koblenz, to Cologne after our Rhine journey. We got on the train in Bacharach as planned, but it stopped in the next small town, and everyone had to get off the train, and pile onto a bus that would take us to the next town to catch the train again, because they were doing some maintenance on the train tracks and could not run the train in that area. So we pile onto this bus and have about a 10 min. ride to the next tiny town. Everyone gets off, goes to the train station, only to wait 5 min. and then find out that we must all get back on the bus for it to take everyone to Koblenz since this train was not working either (and of course this whole time, we are having to find someone to translate what is going on since unfortunately we don't know German). So now, our whole group, plus all the other folks that had already been waiting at this train station pile onto this bus again, this time being even more crowded. I think about half the people on the bus were not wearing deodorant because it smelled pretty BAD. Unfortunately the ride to Koblenz was probably like a half hour. And we were stuck standing on the bus around a bunch of smelly people. So, finally we get to Koblenz, and everything goes smoothly catching our train back to Colonge. A stressful end to a nice relaxing day on the Rhine!
We enjoyed Cologne, although it is alot more modern than I expected. It was not as many old buildings as I had pictured, but more modern apartment complexes and buildings. It's a very lively city, especially the area of restaurants and such on the Rhine River.
So we had some train problems getting to Cologne, it's a long story that I don't feel like typing, but the main point is, that we did make it to Cologne on the night we planned! I really do not like trains or the train stations so far! And, thanks to Mike's brother (thanks Dave!!!!) we had a suite in a fancy-pants 5-star hotel where the amazing Dom Cathedral was literally right outside our windows/balcony. It was definitely a nice change after coming from the dump-hostel in Brugge and our stressful train adventure. :-)