The fourth-largest German city, Cologne was founded in 50 C.E. by the Romans under Emperor Claudius and called the ‘Claudia Colony near the Altar of Agrippinians’. Only the reference to the colony remains in the name, but it has been an important city ever since.

The Köln-Riehl City Youth Hostel is the venue of our fall retreat.

You can be in Cologne by train in as little as:

  • 1hr 32 min from Frankfurt
  • 3 hr 20 minutes from Amsterdam
  • 4 hr 40 min from Paris Est
  • 7 hr 32 min 10 hrs from Copenhagen
  • 18 hr 2 min from Kolozsvár


  • 12 hr 45 min from Miami
  • 11 hr 35 min from Montreal
  • 14 hr 45 min from LAX

Cologne is easily accessible by car from the Low Countries by the E31, from Paris on the E15/E19/E42/E40 and from Basel via the E35.

The address: An der Schanz 14 – 50735, Köln. Telephone number is +49 221 976 5130. Email is

The hostel is easily accessible from the Central Station by tram no. 18, and you will have to walk approximately 450 m (about 500 yards) from the Boltenstern tram stop. If you take a taxi from the station, it’s about a 7 minute ride. For the young and strong, it’s a 48 minute walk. 😊

For those driving, the hostel is on the north side of the city, with connections via motorways 8, 9, and 51. Slow down as you approach, the sign at the entrance from the highway is small. If you miss it, you’ll have to cross two bridges to return.

For those who want to combine their stay with a visit to the European Builders Forum Trade Show at the Cologne Trade Fair Center, the show opens on 3 November and runs until 4 November. There are also a large number of musical events before and after our retreat. You can explore the possibilities, here.