EU Day 83-84: Riding Cologne (DEU) to Düsseldorf (DEU) and rest day

It was time for the final ride of the tour, it was really short and flat the whole way, but it brings my total distance for the tour to 4145km. I spent the morning writing some emails to friends back home before hitting the road. The ride wasn’t very eventful, it was mostly city riding and bits of it went through industrial areas. There were plenty of traffic lights and I’ve made a habit of stopping at every single light (as a pedestrian too) to avoid getting a fine, I’m still paranoid from that incident in Croatia.

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Previously I learned that Cologne and Düsseldorf have an old rivalry, so it was time to see how the other side stacks up. The city is stunning, thanks to some clever planning in the 1800s, it has been kept very green, with plenty of gardens and parks for the public to enjoy. After checking in at my hostel, I went for a walk along the Rhine River, picked up a city map at the tourist centre and started wandering.

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There was some construction going on for some of the churches, and the other ones were difficult to photograph, nonetheless, I enjoyed the lovely streets. Dusseldorf is home to the longest bar in the world because in such a small stretch of lanes, there are over 260 bars and restaurants. I tried pork knuckle for the first time and it was pretty good.

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I saw a marketplace on the way back to the hostel, but they were packing up, I’m glad I’m here for another day, so I can investigate it tomorrow. I went to the supermarket for some snacks and headed back to the hostel early, as I wasn’t feeling well. The illness from my dorm room in Cologne had finally set in, so I hoped for a speedy recovery.

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In the morning I decided to do my own walking tour to get some sunshine and fresh air. I started off on Konigsallee, where you can find a statue of Triton at the end of the tree lined street. It’s part of a major shopping district and the Koben building houses some upmarket stores as well as offices.

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As I headed towards the city centre, I found the Hornet mural, which was quite mesmerising.

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I continued to the Basilika of St Lambertus, and on the left of it there is a big cyclinder with a person on top. I’ve seen a few of these around the city and still don’t know what they’re for. This area was part of the old town, so there were other cool things near it too.

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This insane sculpture didn’t have any English on it, but also had 1822 on it. Later at the state museum I learned that was the year Dusseldorf officially became a city, after victory at the battle of Worringer. Supposedly the children did cart wheels to celebrate and now it’s an iconic city souvenir.

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All this walking made me hungry, so I went to the market for lunch. There were stalls for everything; fruit and veg, meat, baked goods, flowers, craft and cheese. I headed for the seafood section and ordered my meal from a busy stall.

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After my delightful meal, I was energised and ready for some art galleries, except both of them, KIT (an exhibition in a tunnel) and Kai 10, where shut because they were setting up new exhibits. I was disappointed, but I chose to explore some architecture instead. Medien-Hafen was an old port area which has been revitalised with super modern structures.

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With such great weather and so many cool things to see, I wanted to keep going, but I was feeling exhausted. I spent the remainder of the day resting and trying to get better so I could enjoy my last few days.

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