I've posted two new web albums of photos from our river voyage on the Rhine and Danube during the Xmas and New Year holidays.
On Christmas Eve our boat left Cologne and when the sun was rising, entered the Rhine gorge. I awakened to the sound of wildly chiming bells from the church in the nearby village, greeting the sunrise of Christmas Day. After a hearty breakfast, Ira and I bundled up in down coats, ear bands + hoods, gloves, went to the top deck with our cameras and enjoyed the next few hours looking at the many castles perched high on the hills and the toy like villages beneath them. I selected about 20 of these photos for the first album.
The second album, I suppose should have been the first, as this one contains photos of the Cologne cathedral, a huge edifice that dates from the 11th century and took 600 years to complete, therefore incorporating many different styles of craftsmanship, yet remaining distinctly German. There are many knightly and crusader depictions on mosaic floors and walls of frescoes. I don't remember the guide saying anything about any damage inflicted by WW2 bombing, but surely there must have been some though its not evident. That the cathedral is still a growing entity is evidenced by several contemporary ceiling murals in the lower ceiling vaulted spaces. Several of the night photos were taken as our boat during our first evening, moved upriver to a new mooring; one shot as we left Cologne.
The photos above are of the cathedral and of the famed Christmas market that closes on Christmas Eve.