Day 1 (Friday 18 October) continued:
15.04 London St Pancras to Brussels Midi
18.25 Brussels Midi to Cologne Hauptbahnhof
As we approached St Pancras, Paul was excited at the prospect of seeing the Spice Girls’ Entrance.
That’s not some weird euphemism – the video for their debut single Wannabe was filmed in and around the station’s Grand Hotel. Even if you don’t recognise it, the caption “St Pancras Grand Hotel” appearing 6 seconds in gives the game away.
Incidentally, while writing this blog post, I looked up when this song came out, and it turns out it was in NINETEEN NINETY SIX, which is impossible because I remember it from when I was young, and I’m STILL YOUNG NOW, DAMN IT.
Continue reading “Cologne again, naturally (#TågFärjetur part 2)”
As mentioned in my previous post, I stopped off in Cologne for a couple of days en route to Berlin. So was my visit a success, or was it a North-Rhine-WestFailure? If that appalling pun hasn’t put you off, read on to find out…
THE ENGLISH SHOP – after eating at the Hard Rock Café (shut up, I was tired and it was open and convenient), I headed back to the hotel. En route, I passed The English Shop, whose TfL lawyer-baiting logo had a poignant improvised addition: “Britain might have left the EU,” it said, “but we’re still here. So a little part of Britain survives in the EU!”
For someone who was (and still is) grieving the tragedy that is Brexit, this was a bit too much, and I returned to my hotel feeling gloomy.
Continue reading “I think I’m Cologne now”
It’s another travel catch-up, from September 2016!
Back in 2014, I used the (now sadly withdrawn) DB night train from Berlin to Paris, an experience so exquisite that I managed to get a blog post and a YouTube video out of it.
Two years on, September 2016, and I felt Berlin calling to me again. It was time to repeat the experience in the other direction. The sleeper is no more, but there are still plenty of high speed trains zooming across the Continent. It was time to sample some of that action.
European train travel offers a myriad of high speed train options, each with their own fare structure. Sorting out your ICEs from your Thalyses can be a tricky business. Fortunately I was armed with knowledge from the Man in Seat 61, a one-man treasure trove of information about such things. His website should be the first stop for anyone planning a similar voyage.
For travel to Germany, however, booking is quite simple. Just go to DB’s website, Bahn.com, and enter your journey details. The 10.58 Eurostar gives a convenient connection at Brussels, and is also a good departure time for people like me, who need to travel from the provinces.
Continue reading “ICE ICE Baby”