There are 7 ways to get from Rotterdam to Cologne by train, bus, rideshare, car or plane

Select an option below to see step-by-step directions and to compare ticket prices and travel times in Rome2rio's travel planner.

Recommended option

Train  •  3h 49m

  1. Take the train from Rotterdam Centraal to Utrecht Centraal
  2. Take the train from Utrecht Centraal to Duisburg Hbf Ice
  3. Take the train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf Ice / ...

29€ - 144€

Cheapest option

Bus via Leverkusen Leverkusen Mitte Bf  •  5h 44m

  1. Take the bus from Rotterdam, Rotterdam CS to Cologne, Leverkusen 268

14€ - 18€

5 alternative options

Train via Eindhoven  •  4h 4m

  1. Take the train from Rotterdam Centraal to Eindhoven Centraal
  2. Take the train from Eindhoven Centraal to Venlo
  3. Take the train from Moenchengladbach Hbf to Koeln Hbf Rb / ...

27€ - 84€

Bus  •  4h 50m

  1. Take the bus from Rotterdam to Cologne Hbf

40€ - 60€

Rideshare  •  3h 15m

  1. Take the rideshare from Rotterdam to Cologne 256.6 km

15€

Drive  •  2h 24m

  1. Drive from Rotterdam to Cologne 255 km

35€ - 55€

Train, fly  •  3h 28m

  1. Take the train from Rotterdam Centraal to Schiphol Airport
  2. Fly from Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) to Dusseldorf (DUS) AMS - DUS
  3. Take the train from Düsseldorf to Cologne, Cologne central station

82€ - 390€

Questions & Answers

There is widespread community transmission globally.
Some travel restrictions are being lifted in Germany. For the latest travel status, please check the official page for Germany.

Learn More.

The cheapest way to get from Rotterdam to Cologne is to rideshare which costs 15€ and takes 3h 15m.

More details

The quickest way to get from Rotterdam to Cologne is to drive which costs 35€ - 55€ and takes 2h 24m.

More details

Yes, there is a direct bus departing from Rotterdam and arriving at Cologne Hbf. Services depart four times a week, and operate Friday and Saturday. The journey takes approximately 4h 50m.

More details

No, there is no direct train from Rotterdam to Cologne. However, there are services departing from Rotterdam Centraal and arriving at Koeln Hbf via Utrecht Centraal and Duisburg Hbf. The journey, including transfers, takes approximately 3h 49m.

More details

The distance between Rotterdam and Cologne is 204 km. The road distance is 255 km.

Get driving directions

The best way to get from Rotterdam to Cologne without a car is to train which takes 3h 49m and costs 28€ - 150€.

More details

It takes approximately 3h 49m to get from Rotterdam to Cologne, including transfers.

More details

Rotterdam to Cologne bus services, operated by Eurolines DE, depart from Rotterdam station.

More details

Rotterdam to Cologne train services, operated by Dutch Railways (NS), depart from Rotterdam Centraal station.

More details

Map of how to get from Rotterdam to Cologne.
Launch map view
  • Distance: 203.6 km
  • Duration: 3h 49m

What companies run services between Rotterdam, Netherlands and Cologne, Germany?

You can take a train from Rotterdam to Cologne via Utrecht Centraal and Duisburg Hbf in around 3h 49m. Alternatively, Eurolines DE operates a bus from Rotterdam to Cologne Hbf 4 times a week. Tickets cost 40€ - 60€ and the journey takes 4h 50m.

Airlines
KLM
Website
klm.com
Flights from Amsterdam Schiphol to Dusseldorf
Ave. Duration
50 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
130€ - 700€
Train operators
Dutch Railways (NS)

Dutch Railways (NS) is the main passenger railway operator in the Netherlands. Founded in 1938, NS connects all major cities in the Netherlands, and offers night trains, international trains, Intercity direct, and trains to and from the airport. NS International is the international subsidiary of NS; their services include high-speed trains such as Thalys, ICE International, Eurostar and TGV, to major European hubs including Paris, London, Brussels, Berlin, Cologne, Frankfurt and Lille.

Contact Details
Phone
+31 30 751 5155
Website
ns.nl
Train from Rotterdam Centraal to Utrecht Centraal
Ave. Duration
38 min
Frequency
Every 20 minutes
Estimated price
10€ - 24€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
10€ - 15€
1st Class
17€ - 24€
Train from Utrecht Centraal to Duisburg Hbf
Ave. Duration
1h 31m
Frequency
Every 3 hours
Estimated price
17€ - 40€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
17€ - 24€
1st Class
29€ - 40€
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
39 min
Frequency
Every 4 hours
Estimated price
11€ - 26€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
11€ - 16€
1st Class
18€ - 26€
Train from Rotterdam Centraal to Eindhoven Centraal
Ave. Duration
1h 1m
Frequency
Every 30 minutes
Estimated price
13€ - 35€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
13€ - 19€
1st Class
23€ - 35€
Train from Eindhoven Centraal to Venlo
Ave. Duration
39 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
10€ - 24€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
10€ - 14€
1st Class
17€ - 24€
Train from Moenchengladbach Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
53 min
Frequency
6 times a week
Estimated price
10€ - 24€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
10€ - 15€
1st Class
17€ - 24€
Train from Rotterdam Centraal to Schiphol Airport
Ave. Duration
25 min
Frequency
Every 20 minutes
Estimated price
9€ - 21€
Website
NS
Book at
Netherlands Rail Pass
2nd Class
9€ - 13€
1st Class
16€ - 21€
Deutsche Bahn Intercity-Express

German rail company Deutsche Bahn is known for its efficient and comfortable service. It offers many different types of rail transportation, including ICE or Intercity-Express for high-speed services between major cities and regions, IC (InterCity) for long-distance trains, RE (Regional Express) trains that connect regions and cities, and the S-Bahn rapid transit service. There are two main tickets on offer: the Flexpreis that has full flexibility, and the Sparpreis which is the cheaper, advanced fare (bookings usually open 6 months in advance for domestic tickets).

Contact Details
Phone
+49 0180 6 99 66 33
Website
bahn.com
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
36 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
19€ - 27€
Website
Deutsche Bahn
Train from Moenchengladbach Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
53 min
Frequency
Twice daily
Estimated price
18€ - 26€
Website
Deutsche Bahn
Deutsche Bahn Intercity

Deutsche Bahn’s high-speed InterCity (IC) trains connect cities within Germany. They’re a popular way to travel as they’re faster than Deutsche Bahn’s regional trains and offer a frequent, fast service. All IC trains have first and second class carriages, power sockets and toilets, and most have a bistro cafe or restaurant. Tickets can be booked up to 180 days in advance of travel.

Contact Details
Website
bahn.com
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
41 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
35€ - 55€
Website
reiseauskunft.bahn.de
Deutsche Bahn Regional

Deutsche Bahn’s regional network is made up of IRE (Interregio-Express), RE (Regional-Express), RB (Regionalbahn) and S-Bahn trains. Ticket prices are fixed and there’s no seat reservations – just turn up, buy a ticket and jump on the next train. All regional trains depart regularly and connect to local and long-distance services.

Contact Details
Website
bahn.com
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
50 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
10€ - 16€
Website
reiseauskunft.bahn.de
Train from Moenchengladbach Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
55 min
Frequency
Every 30 minutes
Estimated price
9€ - 14€
Website
reiseauskunft.bahn.de
Flixtrain
Phone
+49 1807 123 99 123
Email
info@flixbus.de
Website
flixtrain.com
Train from Duisburg, Duisburg central station to Cologne, Cologne central station
Ave. Duration
39 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
6€ - 8€
Website
Flixtrain
Train from Düsseldorf to Cologne, Cologne central station
Ave. Duration
22 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
5€ - 7€
Website
Flixtrain
National Express
Phone
0221 13 999 444
Website
nationalexpress.de
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Köln Hbf
Ave. Duration
1h 4m
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
14€ - 18€
Website
National Express Rail
Deutsche Bahn Eurocity

Deutsche Bahn’s EuroCity (EC) trains connect German cities to major cities in neighbouring European countries, and are operated in conjunction with their national train company. All EC trains offer First and Standard class; cars are air-conditioned and food and drinks are available onboard. Tickets can be booked up to 180 days in advance of travel. Seat reservations are not compulsory but are recommended for popular routes.

Contact Details
Website
bahn.com
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
40 min
Frequency
4 times a day
Estimated price
12€ - 18€
Website
reiseauskunft.bahn.de
VRR
Phone
+49 209 1584-0
Email
info@vrr.de
Website
vrr.de
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Köln Hbf
Ave. Duration
50 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
2€
Website
VRR
Train from Mönchengladbach Hbf to Köln Hbf
Ave. Duration
57 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
2€
Website
VRR
Thalys
Phone
+32 70 66 77 88
Website
thalys.com
Train from Duisburg Hbf to Koeln Hbf
Ave. Duration
38 min
Frequency
4 times a day
Estimated price
40€ - 80€
Website
Thalys
Standard
40€ - 60€
Comfort
50€ - 70€
Premium
55€ - 80€
Train from Rotterdam Centraal to Schiphol Airport
Ave. Duration
19 min
Frequency
Every 2 hours
Estimated price
40€ - 75€
Website
Thalys
Standard
40€ - 55€
Comfort
50€ - 70€
Premium
50€ - 75€
Bus operators
FlixBus

One of Europe’s leading bus companies, Flixbus serves 2000+ destinations in 29 countries, including Germany, France, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands and Croatia and into Scandinavia and eastern Europe, as well as some US cities. Coaches have toilets, free WiFi and power outlets, plus snacks and drinks for purchase on board. Flixbus is a good choice for the budget-conscious traveller; purchase tickets in advance for the cheapest fares (note: there is no option to reserve a seat in advance).

Rome2rio's guide to FlixBus
Contact Details
Phone
+49 1807 123 99 123
Email
info@flixbus.de
Website
flixbus.de
Bus from Rotterdam, Rotterdam CS to Cologne, Leverkusen
Ave. Duration
4h 20m
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
14€ - 18€
Website
flixbus.co.uk
Other operators
BlaBlaCar

Blablacar is a popular ridesharing platform with 70 million users over 22 (mostly European) countries. The basic idea is that you carpool with locals who are already planning to drive your route and have space in their car. With some flexibility, you’ll get to your destination often faster and cheaper than other means. On the website or app, enter your departure and arrival points and your date of travel, sift through the profiles of drivers who’ve posted pre-planned drives and find one whose timing and preferences match yours. Request to join the ride, wait to be accepted, and pay your share of the set price.

Rome2rio's guide to BlaBlaCar
Contact Details
Website
blablacar.com
Rideshare from Rotterdam to Cologne
Ave. Duration
3h 15m
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
15€
Book at
blablacar.co.uk

Want to know more about travelling around Germany

Rome2rio's Travel Guide series provide vital information for the global traveller. Filled with useful and timely travel information, the guides answer all the hard questions - such as 'How do I buy a ticket?', 'Should I book online before I travel? ', 'How much should I expect to pay?', 'Do the trains and buses have Wifi?' - to help you get the most out of your next trip.

More Questions & Answers

The best way to get from Rotterdam to Cologne is to train which takes 3h 49m and costs 28€ - 150€. Alternatively, you can bus, which costs 40€ - 60€ and takes 4h 50m.

Mode details

The quickest flight from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport to Dusseldorf Airport is the direct flight which takes 50 min.

Search flights

Rotterdam to Cologne bus services, operated by Eurolines DE, arrive at Cologne Hbf station.

More details

Rotterdam to Cologne train services, operated by Deutsche Bahn Intercity-Express, arrive at Koeln Hbf station.

More details

Yes, the driving distance between Rotterdam to Cologne is 255 km. It takes approximately 2h 24m to drive from Rotterdam to Cologne.

Get driving directions

KLM offers flights from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport to Dusseldorf Airport.

Search flights

Book your Rotterdam to Cologne bus tickets online with Omio.

Search and book

There are 1194+ hotels available in Cologne. Prices start at 87€ per night.

More details

Check out Blablacar's carpooling service for rideshare options between Rotterdam and Cologne. A great option if you don't have a driver's licence or want to avoid public transport.

Read Rome2rio's guide to Blablacar