Cologne Christmas Markets Trip Report
Thursday 30th November dawned bright and cold, and 35 girls along with 4 staff piled on to a coach at 6:30am to embark on an eight-hour journey into the heart of western Germany.
After the eager and enthusiastic journey, we eventually arrived at the hotel at 3:30pm and after a quick dinner, walked down to the stunning Markt der Engel, Cologne’s oldest Christmas market. We were greeted by a sea of glowing stars illuminating the stalls, which were beautifully decorated and offered handmade decorations as well as an array of traditional German food, such as stollen and Bratwurst. Needless to say, a lot of food was eaten that evening, and we walked out with full stomachs and bags filled with precious souvenirs.
Friday came with the promise of Cologne Cathedral, so we walked through the city’s bustling shopping district and gasped at the huge structure looming before us. After ascertaining that it wasn’t, in fact, photoshopped into the sky, we stepped inside and proceeded to climb the 533 spiral steps. Any complaints at the sheer amount of steps were quelled by the breathtaking view at the top of cathedral, as we marvelled at the picturesque Rhine.
Then, we entered the adjacent Christmas market and practised some more of our German. This was followed by a trip to the local bowling alley, where all of the girls and staff participated in a fun round of bowling. After that, we travelled to the next Christmas market – the Harbour Market – ready to splurge some more money on the numerous other exquisite gifts.
We headed back to the hotel and ate our dinner. Not long after, when the clock struck 9pm, we departed the hotel and eagerly made our way back to the Markt der Engel, once again struck by its magnificence. As it was our last chance to purchase any last-minute mementos, we scurried through the large crowds building in the market, searching for the things we desired. Unfortunately, the day did, finally, come to an end and we somnolently returned to our rooms, preparing ourselves for the departure the following day.
Saturday morning appeared too soon, but we packed our bags, gathered downstairs and boarded the coach, heart-broken to be leaving this remarkable place. Nevertheless, every single one of us had relished the visit and will be recalling the memories in many years to come.
Since we gained an earlier start, we arrived back at school, in the chilly English weather, at around 4:30pm, which we were all very pleased about. Keen to display our gifts at home, we left the school in silence once again, with blissful memories engraved into our minds of this marvellous trip.
A special thank you to Mrs Pollard for arranging this amazing trip and also to Mrs Dean, Mr Mason and Mr Spray for helping make this trip enjoyable for all of us. We are all very grateful to have gotten this opportunity. It has helped improve our German significantly, and we hope that the girls in the following years also get this chance.
Co-written by Reem Alhassan and Sam Johi, 9C
Photo gallery can be found HERE