Eurostar connects to German cities of Cologne and Aachen via links with high-speed Thalys and ICE

5 Apr 2005
  • Return fares from £69

Eurostar, the international fast train operator which links the UK directly with France and Belgium, today announces through fares and connections to the magnificent German cities of Aachen and Cologne. New promotional fares, in conjunction with high-speed rail operators Thalys and Deutsche Bahn's ICE, of £69 return are now available from London or Ashford to either of these cities until the end of 2005.
The new offer is by Eurostar to Brussels Midi. Then, a simple connection will take you either by the high-speed Thalys or ICE services to Aachen or Cologne. The fastest journey times are 4h23 mins to Aachen and 5h02 mins to Cologne (all one hour less from Ashford).
Both these attractive cities in North Rhine Westphalia are ideal for UK holidaymakers wanting a short break or longer holiday. These can be booked through Eurostar's Contact Centre on 08705 186 186*, or in person at Waterloo or Ashford International terminals.
Eurostar's Director of Communications. Paul Charles, commented: "Cologne and Aachen are welcome additions to the Eurostar Connections range and are now easy to get to with the Eurostar/Thalys/ICE alliance. The cities provide even more of a reason to jump on high-speed rail into Europe. We expect to extend our range of German destinations during 2005."
Aachen lies close to the borders of Belgium and the Netherlands. It is said that the Emperor Charlemagne chose Aachen as his favourite residence and the site of the Frankish court because of the hot springs. Indeed, the Town Hall stands on the original walls of Charlemagne's Hall of Kings. There are many sights to see including Aachen's Cathedral - a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. There are extensive pedestrian precincts in the historical city centre with a wide range of shops, bars and restaurants.
Cologne is the state's largest city and is located on the banks of the Rhine. It is set in the magnificent Rhineland landscape and is the gateway to a region of steeply wooded hills and terraced vineyards scattered with medieval fortresses, baroque citadels and 18th Century palaces. Rail is definitely the way to arrive in this rich city. Cologne railway station stands out in terms of railway architecture as having one of the most stunning train shed roofs in the world.
Cologne is one of Germany's oldest cities, dating back to the Roman era and the famous 'eau de cologne' was invented there in 1709. It has a range of fascinating museums and art galleries. It boasts a superb Gothic cathedral (Kölner Dom- next the main station) and from the top of the Dom's southern tower there are panoramic views of the whole area. With historic bridges over the Rhine, floating restaurants and great shopping areas it is a thoroughly exciting and vibrant destination whatever the time of year.
* A £5 booking fee is charged through the Eurostar Contact Centre. Bookings can be made between 09h00 and 17h00.
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Editor's Notes:-
EUROSTAR
1. Eurostar is the fast train service linking London, Ashford, Paris, Brussels, Lille, Avignon, Calais, Disneyland Resort Paris and the French Alps.
2. Eurostar has direct services to the following destinations; Paris, Brussels, Lille, Disneyland Resort Paris, Calais Frethun and during the winter ski season the French Alps and during the summer Avignon. By travelling by Eurostar and then connecting at Lille, Paris or Brussels with other high-speed TGV, Thalys or domestic services more than a 100 other destinations are available in France, Belgium and the Netherlands.
3. Eurostar was named "Train Operator of the Year" at the National Rail Awards 2004; "World's Leading Rail Service" in the 2003 and 2004 World Travel Awards; "Best Rail Network" at the Business Travel World Awards 2004 and "Best Rail Operator" at the Travel Weekly Globe Awards 2004.
4. Eurostar and Eurotunnel are two entirely different companies with two different management teams. Eurostar is Eurotunnel's largest customer.
5. To book tickets for other Eurostar destinations, or to find out more information, go to www.eurostar.com , call 08705 186186 or contact your travel agent.
For more information on Eurostar: Eurostar Press Office, +44 (0) 20 7922 4494, press.office@eurostar.co.uk
THALYSThalys is the unique European high-speed network connecting daily 4 countries: France, Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. Every day, 30 trains run between Paris Ile-de-France and Brussels, 6 between Paris, Aachen and Köln, 5 between Paris and Amsterdam.
In 2004, Thalys transported 5,95 million passengers, and realized a turnover equal to 318 million euros with an increase of 5.6 % versus 2003. Thalys' travel concept aims to provide its passengers the best services while combining speed, frequency, comfort, security and accessibility. Thalys also takes into consideration the complete journey of the passenger, and develops accordingly partnerships (public transportation, taxi companies, rental cars, hotel chains, etc.) in order to easier access to trains, and the trip as a whole.
For any further information on Thalys please visit our site at www.thalys.com or contact the Thalys Press Office, +32 (0) 2 504 05 99 - press@thalys.com
DEUTSCHE BAHN'S ICEDeutsche Bahn (DB) is the leading transport and logistic service provider in Europe. Last year 4.6 million people travelled by DB every day.
The ICE (InterCityExpress) train is Deutsche Bahn's flagship and sets high standards in design, comfort and speed. DB's train of the future on domestic and international services is the ICE 3. First class passengers can sit in a lounge directly behind the driver, from where they can enjoy a view right through the cockpit onto the track ahead.
In addition to the international rail links from London to Germany's cities of Aachen and Cologne by Eurostar and ICE there are connections at Brussels to Bremen/Hamburg or Hanover/Wolfsburg/Berlin and at Paris to Munich by DB NachtZug (Night train).
For rail bookings or further information please call the Deutsche Bahn UK Booking Centre from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm on 08702 43 53 63 (national rates apply). Timetable information is also available on our web site at www.bahn.co.uk.
For more press information on Deutsche Bahn please contact tel. 020 8339 4720 - press@bahn.co.uk