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The Vulkaneifel European Geopark and Nature Park: a journey through the land of crater lakes and volcanoes

In the Volcanic Eifel, violent explosions and fire from the depths have blasted holes in the earth given birth to towering mountains. It was here that Germany's youngest volcano, the Ulmen Maar or crater lake, was formed 10,900 years ago.

Sprawling heights, thick forests, clear streams, fragrant meadows and charming villages: the Volcanic Eifel is a picture-perfect holiday destination that is peaceful beyond compare. Beneath the ground, however, it's anything but peaceful: there the violent forces that once gave birth to this enchanting, and at times harsh, landscape are still active.

It was fire and water that formed the Volcanic Eifel and it is fire and water that continues to form it today. With approximately 350 volcanoes of various sizes, crater lakes, lava flows and countless mineral and carbonated springs, the Volcanic Eifel's ongoing legacy is truly striking. And that's not all that the Volcanic Eifel's historic depths have to offer: sandstones, tropical reefs and mighty lake deposits bear witness to periods of peace and turmoil spanning the last 400 million years.

Few regions on Earth give such a distinctive and fascinating insight into their origins and development. This makes the Volcanic Eifel an exquisite piece of natural heritage, which has been awarded European Geopark status and is part of the UNESCO Global Geopark Network. In 2010 it was also awarded nature park status.

Geo-museums make scientific phenomena accessible to all and carefully selected cycle and hiking tours lead visitors on a journey through the treasures of this fascinating landscape. Visitors can also find inspiration on exciting certified guided tours which invite them to enjoy the tastes and thrills, the walking and hiking, the cycling and mountain biking and the exploration and discovery of this multifaceted land of crater lakes and volcanoes.

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