"Glück auf Ruhrgebiet" Top 5 Page for this destination Land Nordrhein-Westfalen by diocletianvs
Land Nordrhein-Westfalen Travel Guide: 6,076 reviews and 16,270 photos
I visited the Ruhr region in May 2005 with four other friends, mainly because we were interested to explore the industrial heritage of the region. The German "Ruhrgebiet" was once known as one of the dirtiest and most polluted areas in Europe. It consists of several cities that all have their particular identities although they form one big spot on geographic maps.
The era of dirty coal mines and steel mills is over, but not forgotten. This is probably the reason why for most people this is still not an area they would want to visit on their travels. On the other hand, the fact that industrial revolution left so many traces here is also the reason that local people take industrial heritage as a very important element of their local identity.
A creative program of large transformation was launched in the 1990s, after most of the old industry collapsed in the previous decade. This included transformation of former mine pits and steel factories into new programs that include culture, leisure and vast open spaces.
The sky over Ruhr is clean now, and steel "Cathedrals of Work" are waiting to be discovered by the new tourists attracted by industrial heritage. Ruhr is a genuine and true monument to hard work in the first place, to industrial achievements that changed our lives, cities and landscapes during the last two centuries.
It took lots of imagination and energy to make this area not only clean again, but attractive for both locals and visitors. I guess it will also take some time for visitors to discover it - but Ruhrpott's lid is off, waiting for you to jump in and explore what it has to offer.
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