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Ruhrgebiet: The former heartland of industry is now a beautiful cultural ground.

Ruhrgebiet (or Ruhr) is the region once renowned for spewing steelworks and coal mines is now a widespread post-industrial place which has worked day and night for the current years and reinvented itself. The place is in the North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. A febrile attitude has always been a flavor of Germany’s former coal mining region. Ruhr was once a valley – tough yet generous is now a developed area carrying 200 museums, 120 theaters and 100 concert halls blossoming gorgeously amid the transcendent urban delight.

The region is the cargo of surprises with aristocratic sights, spots, and experiences. The tours and parks cradle the hulky legacy of this vast and extinct industrial complex. The diverse prosperity of shopping sprees, cultural temples, sports and entertainment grounds, tremendous architecture from Gothic to Bauhaus to post-modern. The people in the entire world embrace the Ruhrgebriet’s heritage.

Numerous small towns and villages of the region have been matured in the Middle Ages and earlier too, but they just had coal during the period of the industrial revolution to the meaningful size. The natural groundwork of development of Ruhr from the 19th century are its reserves of coal and accompanying steel industry along with iron, steel, railroads and steam engines.


Ruhr area’s urban vista enhances from the Lower Rhine Basin to the Westphalian Plain and the South to the Rhenish Massif hills. A slice of loess belt is seen running through the center of the Ruhr that expands across the country from west to east.  Ruhr on the map is considered as a single city somewhat in the north-south dimension as the breaks between the individual cities boroughs cannot be seen by the naked eye. Hence, Ruhr is characterized as a polycentric area which shares resembling history of economic and urban development.

There are proportionately open suburbs between the combining urban areas and also some open land with agricultural fields. There was also the creation of new parks and recreation areas due to the replanting of brownfield land. Along the river Emscher, there is placed the Emscher Landscape Park forming a beautiful green ribbon between the Ruhr cities from east to west.


The charming city has the oceanic climate albeit the inland position, accompanying mild winds from the Atlantic flying over the lowlands to balanced temperature extremes in spite of its comparably northerly latitude that looks meaningful in daylight hours. The result of the marine authority is a wet and cloudy climate with less sunshine. The temperature experienced here in summers sometimes is cold and wet while the month of April is considered warm and sunny. Particularly, the best fate of the sun to shine is from May to August and occasionally in October. The months of July and August can become hottest with temperatures extending to 35 degrees Celsius. Winters are extremely chilly with the temperature generally averaging above the freezing point. Even if the place is bone –chilling during winters, the Christmas markets however in Dortmund and Münster are worth visiting.


The early seeds of industrialization were sown due to individual ironworks. St Antony Ironworks was established in the 18th century, and Neu-Essen ironworks was initiated in the late 18th century in Oberhausen. Ever since then, mining became the economic pillar of the place. After some time the industrial buildings of the region aroused, and the steel, iron steam engines, collieries and high chimneys of the industrial revolution molded the shape of Ruhr region.

Due to economic and ecological problems, the confidence and optimism were crushed when there were dreadful coal crises in the 1960s. Numbers of mines were closed up, and the amounts of jobs were reduced to half. In the recent decades, the fiery attitude and effort lead the place to its modernization and multifariousness of the economic pedestal at the Ruhr. Now, the old industrial ruins are embraced and converted to cultural venues. Also, along with the recovery from its backlash, it started attracting people with its latest activities combining with efforts to harmonize with the environment.

Due to its history, the structure of the place differs from the monocentric cities like London and Berlin, who were developed through the brisk fusion of the small towns and villages with the thriving central city. Rather, Ruhr’s city boroughs and urban districts flourished independently of one another during the industrial revolution.  In the year 1856, mysterious remains of a man were traced while mining the area in an obscure valley called ‘Neandertal.’ After some scientific argument, it was claimed as contemporary of Cro-Magnon man, and the name of the valley became famous for human prehistory which symbolized significant link in the chain of evolution.

The district:

Ruhrgebiet, the former industrial region sitting on the Ruhr river, forms the south border. You may be amazed to know that it is also traveled by the Lippe and Emscher rivers. Regardless the waterways flowing through the region, all towns and cities have one usual thing: they all have successfully achieved the changeover from industrial phase to cultural. The role change is crystal clear and everlasting. The new found identity and new reality landed up Essen to the position of The European Cultural capital in 2010 in which not only the ‘Big Five’ Duisburg, Oberhausen, Essen, Dortmund and Bochum participated but also more than 50 other towns and cities of Ruhr took part.

There are about 200 museums, 100s of concert halls, 120 theaters that is gorgeously splattered everywhere. The best way to attain the overview of this multifarious abundance of shopping sprees, sport and entertainment arenas is from one of the place’s soil tips. To enjoy, to participate, to be fascinated and enraptured by its smoldering diversity, this is apparently one of a kind place where you would like to be.

Traveling the area:

Traveling around Ruhr is very convenient and reliable with numerous options of public accommodations. Düsseldorf has fabulous highway connections. If you are here through Düsseldorf International, it will just take 15 minutes by road to reach up here. Traveling through rails is also a convenient and budget-friendly option.  Travelling from other airports like Dortmund and Weeze-Niederrhein also has the same frame.

If various cities are to be visited like Duisburg, Mühlheim, Essen, Bochum, Dortmund, and Hamm, then they are all connected through railways spreading from the main north-south route and thus are often provided by long distance trains. There are also long distances running buses available from various European cities. Also, renting a car once arrived here and taking a personal tour around the area seems like a great plan too!

Why visit?

Ruhr is the budding destination in Germany for its influential industrial heritage, eminent cultural events, and phenomenal traveling experience. Either a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Zollverein, a high ropes climbing between blast furnaces which are abandoned or lunging in gasometer or Halden Segway tours or the art museums with the world-famous masterworks and impressive exhibitions or restaurants in sensational industrial cathedrals: the Ruhr metropolitan area is a fantastic destination in the entire continent and a surprising attraction waiting to be disclosed. The industrial past of the area is overshadowed with major service industrial area, along with natural and cultural attractions. The old mine works have been transformed into ascending recreational spaces, theaters and affectionate gardens welcoming the reflection of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

The industrial heritage trail has the museums consisting relatively a dozen painted or sculpted masterpieces for every smokestack in view. The country’s other outstanding biking routes seek in half-timbered villages, historical monasteries, flying steeples and enigmatic forests. The European Union has assigned Essen as the Capital culture of Europe for 2010 and to the other cities (Ruhr as a whole) as one of a kind. The thing that is unique is the marching transformation from being the heartland of coal and steel industry in the 19th century. Its vista is no longer concealed behind the smoky black clouds.  People from all over the globe visit the place and enjoy some quality time with their family and friends. And you should visit this place too, if you’re planning a holiday tour in this part of the world.

Major Attractions:

  • A mining museum in Bochum.
  • World Heritage Site Zeche Zollverein in Essen and the city.
  • An open air museum in Hagen.
  • Dortmund: DASA.
  • The palace of the Krupp family-Villa Hügel in Essen.
  • An exhibition on Jewish life and culture.
  • One of the biggest museums of its kind – Eisenbahnmuseum (A Railway Museum) in Bochum.
  • Ships lift Herichenburg in Waltrop.
  • Harbour Trip from Duisburg
  • Landscape Park- Landschaftspark is the steel plant as a park, and the accessible furnace is the highlight in Duisburg.
  • Inner Harbour: From an industrial part to an intriguing residential and leisure quarter in Duisburg.
  • Hamm: A Tamil Temple Shri Kamadchi Ampal (Indian).
  • Chemiepark-the superlative chemistry set in Marl.
  • Centro/neue Mitte-a new center and Gas Tank (Gasometer) is the most modern shopping spree and the largest exhibition hall in Oberhausen.
  • Tetraeder, which is located on rock-dump, Prosper/Haniel. It is in Bottrop.
  • In Mülheim an der Ruhr, there’s an exhibition about water with numerous hands-on

What else around?

  • Düsseldorf

So visit this place with your family and friends and enjoy the beauty of this fascinating place. You would love it for sure, we promise that!