2022 Christmas Markets River Cruise

Amsterdam — December 25, 2022 — Jordaan District — It was rainy and a bit cold (high 40’s to low 50’s) but the short walking tour through the Jordaan district was still enjoyable. If you look closely at the first and second middle pictures on the first row, you will notice that some buildings appear to jut out or lean outward. That is by design to gain space whereas a building that leans to the right or left is sinking. Some of the buildings have what Americans would call large shutters. These are also by design as the buildings are converted warehouses. The doors/shutters rarely are ever closed and are huge and typically wooden (or metal). Another feature found often on Amsterdam multi-story buildings is a large steel hook that is used to raise and lower goods, furniture, etc from the ground or residence. It beats hauling heavy objects up and down stairs.

On arrival into Amsterdam from Cologne, Germany, aboard AMA Waterways Serena

Cologne, Germany – December 24, 2022 — Most of Cologne was closed. The streets were packed with travelers like myself, residents, and those attending services at the Cologne Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site begun in 1248 and completed in 1880. The Cathedral survived WWII in part because it served as an Allied navigational beacon. More information on this can be found here. The two pictures below are a fraction of what I took. More pictures to be posted later. The first is the Hohenzollern Bridge, a train and pedestrian bridge that crosses the Rhine River. River cruise ships dock in this area. The second is a shot taken near the bridge looking up at the Cathedral.