Saturday, April 20, 2019

Bremen, Cologne

Day 3/10 starts in Hamburg. 
 ICE and IC trains at Altona station
 Since I'm travelling with Interrail my train will be from Deutsche Bahn. On the other side of the platform the train from the competitor Flixtrain will depart to Köln.
From Wikipedia: "Flixtrain is a German open-access operator of long-distance railway services. It is a subsidiary of long-distance coach operator Flixbus and is supplementing its parents bus network with rail connections."
 Flixtrain is using older UIC-Z coaches, previously used by Hamburg-Köln-Express train company

 DB Intercity to the left and Flixtrain to the right
 The rumour says that Flixtrain will soon start operations in other countries besides Germany, among those are France and Sweden.

 DB IC train is using as very often DB Class 101 locomotive

 193 813 Vectron AC is coming from Railpool

 The cars are the older couchette type, here used only as seat cars
 Inside Flixtrain

 Coaches are leased from Bahn Touristik Express
 Many countries

 Nightjet at Altona station
 1st class coach of DB IC train

 Leaving Altona

 From Wikipedia and Google translated: "The building of the original station Sternschanze of the Hamburg-Altonaer connecting line from 1866 is still preserved. It is located about 400 meters east of today's reception building, just north of the S-Bahn tracks on the road Sternschanze 1. The station was equipped with usual waiting and luggage rooms and ticket office, a platform on the house and a central platform. After the completion of the new passenger station in 1903 that built in late Classicist style from 1864 to 1866 the station building was used for administrative and residential purposes and is under since 1989 listed."

 Dammtor station

 DB Class 490 - the newest type of Hamburg S-Bahn

 Hamburg Hbf
 This is where most passengers are boarding the train

 Leaving Hamburg

 About 1h later, I'm in Bremen

 The good thing at the bigger stations in Germany is that all of them has lockers to leave the luggage. Other countries like Italy or France do not have this possibility.
 Trams in Bremen

 Bremen is a beautiful and well preserved city in Germany (which is not very common due to WW2 bombings).
 St. Petri Dom Bremen

 Bremer Marktplatz

 Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten


 Back at the station

 For some reason it was not possible to book seats for the next Intercity train from Bremen to Köln. The lady in the ticket office said that the train was full. On the other hand it is not mandatory to have seat reservation in Germany, so I took a chance. It turned out that there were plenty of empty seats.
 Lunch at the train
 A longer stop at Gelsenkirchen


 Aproaching Köln

 The more south I go, the more green trees I see. It is late April, but it feels already like summer.
 From Wikipedia: "The Hohenzollern Bridge is a bridge crossing the river Rhine in the German city of Cologne. Originally, the bridge was both a railway and road bridge. However, after its destruction in 1945 and its subsequent reconstruction, it was only accessible to rail and pedestrian traffic.
It is the most heavily used railway bridge in Germany with more than 1,200 trains daily, connecting the Köln Hauptbahnhof and Köln Messe/Deutz stations."
 Equestrian Statue of Kaiser Wilhelm II.

 ICE3 train

 Famous Kölsch beer
 Cologne Cathedral

 The cathedral is the largest Gothic church in Northern Europe and has the second-tallest spires.

 Cologne City Hall
 Old Market

 Great St. Martin Church

 Equestrian statue of Friedrich Wilhelm III.

 Dufthaus 4711
 From Wikipedia: "4711 is a traditional German Eau de Cologne by Mäurer & Wirtz. Because it has been produced in Cologne since at least 1799, it is allowed to use the geographical indication Original Eau de Cologne. The brand has been expanded to various other perfumes and products besides the original Echt Kölnisch Wasser, which has used the same formula for more than 200 years."

 Photographers are taking advantage of the beautiful light over the Rhein river

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