Friday, February 24, 2012

Cologne Part 1: Kölner Dom (Exterior)

Nearly two weeks ago I finally made my way to Cologne, via a USO Express tour.  A friend and I boarded a bus before sunrise, and rolled into the city around 10am.  We had a ton of fun, but one day was hardly enough time to see everything this incredible place has to offer.  Already I can't wait to go back and explore again.

The most impressive landmark by far is Kölner Dom, the Cathedral of Cologne. It is massive, and every inch of the outside is covered in beautiful, ornate carvings.  I have so many photos of the cathedral that I'm splitting them into two posts of their own, and I'll cover the rest of my amazing day trip later.


This cathedral made Notre Dame look like a playhouse.  This is as much of the front facade as I could manage to fit in one photograph, and to take this I was reclining backward, practically lying down, only a few feet from the street.  Thank heaven the cathedral rests a few steps higher than the street level, or I never would have managed this shot.


It probably wouldn't hurt to mention that the temperature was well below freezing when we arrived.  Hence my Eskimo-appropriate attire in the photo above.  (Believe it or not, I was still shivering violently for most of the day, and despite wearing two pair of super-thick fuzzy socks, my toes were numb until it began to warm slightly around midday.)  Still, the experience was well worth the cold.  And at least there were blue skies for the photos!



Our tour guide pointed out that much of the cathedral (and the entire city, for that matter) was partially destroyed by bombings in the Second World War.  In the above photo, you can see a clear difference between the original stonework and the reconstruction.  The older stones are lighter in color, and appear rougher from age.





Above is right side view.  Again, this was taken from quite a distance, and from about six feet below the cathedral's level.  Notice the snowy rooftop!  Below are a few photos taken of the back of the cathedral.







This last photo I snapped in the evening, just before we left.  The way the setting sunlight warms the stonework is incredibly beautiful.  I adored everything about Cologne, but the cathedral at sunset especially captured my heart.

Stay tuned!  Up next, a glimpse into the cathedral's interior...
{Part 2, Part 3, Part 4}

7 comments:

  1. You got some great shots of the Dom! We went to Köln around this time last year and just about froze; you were brave to do this much outdoor photography! We really enjoyed the Ludwig Museum. We really need to visit Köln again soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! It was so cold! My fingers were burning even through the gloves but I just couldn't put the camera down...it was breathtaking. We visited the Ludwig, too, as well as the Roman/German history museum. Both were incredible (and warm)!

      Delete
  2. Oh my gosh it is absolutely beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is just stunning!! Beautiful photos....

    ReplyDelete
  4. Gosh Carrie, you should be a professional photographer! These pictures are absolutely stunning!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That just might be the best compliment I've received on this blog...Thanks! :)

      Delete

Each comment you leave donates one smile to my day.
Thanks so much for letting me know what you think.