11th April 2019
Over four days in the spring of 2019, 37 students from RCC travelled to the Rhineland in Germany for our school tour. There was a buzz of excitement in the school’s GP Room just after midnight on the Saturday of the tour. After a few hours travelling, the group arrived in Cologne. The first port of call was the awe inspiring Kölner Dom. After enjoying some Schnitzel and Bratwurst for lunch, there was a climb up the towering spire of the gothic cathedral. After climbing the 533 step spiral staircase to the top, students were treated to a panoramic view of the city on the Rhine.
A short stroll down the banks of the river led the group to the Lindt Chocolate Museum, or Schokoladenmuseum as the locals like to call it. Here students observed the chocolate making process and even got to design their own chocolate bar. As they say in Germany “lecker”!
Sunday morning brought with it some fantastic sunshine and a tour of Marksburg Castle, the only castle in the Rhineland that was left untouched by the bombing of World War II. The tour was very interesting and informative. From the towers, to the cobblestones and the walls that are three metres in width, we got to experience the authentic feel inside of the castle. There was no room out of bounds and so, we saw the kitchen, eating areas, the wine cellar, the bedroom, the toilet that opened to the outside, the chapel and the armoury. After the tour we were able to take ten minutes to enjoy the beautiful surroundings overlooking the Rhine. It was just “prima”! Following this, came a relaxing cruise, on the river dominates the geography of the region, where students got to sit on the upper deck, soaking up the sunshine while enjoying an ice-cream. The cruise led to Rüdesheim. Here students got to enjoy the cable car ride to the Germania monument, commemorating the unification of Germany in 1871. Again, we experienced fabulous views. Last year’s Junior Certificate students were then enthralled by the opportunity to use their roleplays from last years’ oral exam when ordering an ‘Ice-Cream auf Deutsch’! Sunday was brought to a relaxing end in ‘Pin-Up Bowling’ where students went bowling and played games in the arcade.
Monday brought with it a thrilling visit to ‘Phantasialand Theme Park’ where students were treated to the adventures of ‘Taron’, the fastest and longest multi-launched roller coaster in the world. The park had something for everyone, from lazy boat rides, the ‘Wellenflug’ swing to the 65m drop in the ‘Mystery Castle’. Safe to say, it was an exhilarating day and all of us thoroughly enjoyed Phantasialand!
Whilst it was our last day, there were no frowns on the bus in the morning, as we were heading to Nürburgring – a race track well known for its host of Formula 1 and Grand Prix. We were given an exclusive tour of private rooms and stages that cannot be accessed by a general tour and so, we were delighted to have this exciting opportunity. This was a once in a life time experience and thankfully, it was enjoyed by all.
Overall, both students and teachers had an excellent school tour that was jam packed with amazing views, interesting tours and some exciting thrills along the way!
RCC students along with their teacher Mr Donlon enjoying the sunshine at Phantasialand on their recent trip to Germany
RCC students at the Nürburgring on their recent school tour to Germany