La ceinture verte : l’unité allemande côté nature.
Perspective 9: La ceinture verte ©Fotolia / Ezio Gutzemberg
25 exciting perspectives

on Destination Germany

La ceinture verte : l’unité allemande côté nature.

Où peut-on admirer des orchidées rares et des espèces animales presque éteintes ? Le long de la « ceinture verte », en plein coeur de l’Allemagne réunifiée, là où le rideau de fer a divisé le pays en deux systèmes sociaux jusqu’en 1989.

Aujourd’hui, le no man’s land a cédé la place à une vision florissante : un biotope composé de plus de 5 200 espèces animales et végétales, dont beaucoup étaient considérées comme disparues, s’étend sur 1 400 km de longueur. Un terrain idéal pour de longues randonnées cyclistes et pédestres !

The border is a thing of the past. It is now a unique natural landscape for us to enjoy. The Green Belt provides the ideal setting for extended tours retracing Germany ’s history – whether on foot, by bike or on horseback.

The story of the Green Belt

Covering a total area of 8,000 km², this nature conservation project (the largest in Germany) was launched with great resolve immediately after reunification. Today, it provides an unbroken band of unspoilt nature from Travemünde on the Baltic coast to the town of Hof in Bavaria.

The Green Belt is everywhere

Every one of the regions along the Green Belt will whet your appetite for more – not least because of their traditional specialities and local charm. Choose your favourite region from which to explore the Green Belt: cycling tours in the Harz foothills, trail riding in the Wendland or a stop in Hof, where traditional Franconian inns serve regional fare.

Discoveries left, right and centre

There is so much to see and do on either side of the Green Belt, from scenic sections such as the Elbe riverbank meadows or visitor highlights such as the toy-making town of Sonneberg or the fairy grottoes at Saalfeld.

Waving now permitted!

It is hard to believe that right up until 1989 even the tiniest villages were split in two by the border between East and West Germany. For instance, a 3.4-metre-high wall cut straight through the middle of the village of Mödlareuth, population 50. The residents weren’t even allowed to wave across this border wall.

A living monument

Today, 25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Mother Nature is reclaiming the precious habitats that ran along the former border. However, you can still walk or cycle to many relics from the days before reunification, including watchtowers and memorial sites. Borders that once divided people have given way to nature that brings them together.


Bit by bit, the Green Belt is becoming a long-distance cycle route, and large stretches are already open to cyclists.

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