After leaving Amsterdam, just after lunch yesterday, we travelled for about 35 kilometres along the Amsterdam Rhine Canal and turned left (east) into the Rhine River late in the afternoon.On the canal, we went through a massive lock, the first of 68 in total on the entire river system. I guess that we ascended 4 metres in height.
We’ve been travelling upstream for almost 24 hours now at a speed of about 11 kilometres per hour and we are just approaching the city of Cologne. Here, the river forms the boundary of Belgium nd the Netherlands. The countryside is very flat and we have travelled through farmland and small villages – each with its own church steeple appearing up above the trees lining the river bank.. The Rhine delta covers an enormous area and the river essentially enters the North Sea near Rotterdam.
We have passed towns / cities including Nijmeden (probably the oldest city in the Netherlands), Dusseldorf and Leverkusen which is just downstream from Cologne. It has an impressive array of heavy industry along the river. There were a number of large chemical plants, an oil refinery and a very large Ford Motor Company manufacturing plant.
I find the river traffic to be very interesting. We continuously pass barges carrying everything from coal to cars. It’s quite fascinating to be on such a significant inland waterway.