HOME
The Info List - Sauerland


--- Advertisement ---



(i) (i) (i) (i) (i)

The SAUERLAND is a rural, hilly area spreading across most of the south-eastern part of North Rhine-Westphalia , in parts heavily forested and, apart from the major valleys, sparsely inhabited. For these reasons, it has been chosen as the first place in Germany to reintroduce the Wisent
Wisent
(European bison).

The Sauerland
Sauerland
is the largest tourist region in North Rhine-Westphalia, in particular for mountain biking the eastern part adhered to the County of Arnsberg , later became known as the Duchy of Westphalia and was owned by the Archbishops and Electorate of Cologne . The Duchy of Limburg covered a very small area in the lower Lenne river valley. After the Napoleonic Wars the area became part of Prussia and was integrated into the new province of Westphalia . After World War II
World War II
Westphalia was merged with the new federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia . Today, the Sauerland
Sauerland
belongs to the districts Märkischer Kreis , Olpe and Hochsauerland
Hochsauerland
. The western part of the Hessian district Waldeck-Frankenberg is also attributed to the Sauerland
Sauerland
because of its geomorphological as well as sociocultural similarity and the stark contrast to the rest of the adjoining Hessian landscape.

GEOGRAPHY

Map of the Sauerland
Sauerland
showing district and municipal borders (green) as well as rivers, reservoirs and lakes (blue) Biggesee between Olpe and Attendorn Sorpe Reservoir in the Hochsauerland
Hochsauerland

To the west the hills continue into the Bergisches Land , to the south into the Siegerland
Siegerland
, and to the north-east into the Teutoburg Forest
Forest
. The major rivers of the Sauerland
Sauerland
are the Ruhr and the Lenne . Several artificial lakes were created on the smaller rivers by building dams to store water for the nearby Ruhr area
Ruhr area
, the biggest reservoirs being the Möhne and Bigge . Although the highest elevation of the Sauerland
Sauerland
is the Langenberg (843 m) near Olsberg , the much more renowned summit, which is well known for the nearby skiing facilities, its weather station and observation tower, is the slightly lower Kahler Asten (842 m) near Winterberg . Both Langenberg and Kahler Asten are peaks in the Rothaargebirge
Rothaargebirge
mountains.

DAMS AND RESERVOIRS (LAKES)

The Sauerland
Sauerland
has six reservoir lakes.

* Sorpesee * Biggesee * Hennesee * Listertalsperre * Diemelsee
Diemelsee
* Möhnesee

GEOLOGY

The Sauerland
Sauerland
is part of the Rhine Massif (Rheinisches Schiefergebirge) including 'Bergisches Land', Westerwald
Westerwald
, Siegerland , and, separated by the Rhine valley, the Eifel
Eifel
, Hohes Venn and Hunsrück
Hunsrück
. The Rheinisches Schiefergebirge was subjected to folding and faulting in the Variscan orogeny in Carboniferous times and eroded to a peneplain in the Permian . The tectonic uplift to the present-day low mountain range began approximately 500,000 years ago and is still going on.

Most of the Sauerland
Sauerland
rock originates from a Middle and Upper Devonian marginal shallow sea; thus slates , sandstones and greywackes are the most abundant rock types. In some areas limestones from an ancient reef fringe prevail and are karstified . The Sauerland
Sauerland
has several caves, especially in the northern part, the biggest caves being in Attendorn and Balve
Balve
. In some areas of the Sauerland
Sauerland
the occurrence of lead -zinc -silver -ores lead to the development of a considerable mining industry, the center of which was the town of Meggen . Mining in this area lasted until the late second half of the 20th century, today there is no active mining in the Sauerland. The sandstones, greywackes and quartzites of the Sauerland
Sauerland
as well as, to a minor extent, the limestones are still exploited in numerous quarries.

TOWNS AND MUNICIPALITIES

Town centre of Balve
Balve
in 2007 Castle and Lenne in Altena in 2005 Town centre of Schmallenberg in 2010

The largest town of the Sauerland
Sauerland
is Iserlohn
Iserlohn
; other larger towns are Lüdenscheid
Lüdenscheid
and Arnsberg . Meschede is the home of an abbey. Another abbey is placed at Bestwig .

HOCHSAUERLANDKREIS

* Arnsberg * Brilon * Hallenberg * Marsberg
Marsberg
* Medebach * Meschede

* Olsberg * Schmallenberg * Sundern
Sundern
* Winterberg * Bestwig * Eslohe

MäRKISCHER KREIS

* Altena
Altena
* Balve
Balve
* Halver
Halver
* Hemer
Hemer
* Herscheid
Herscheid
* Iserlohn
Iserlohn
* Kierspe * Lüdenscheid
Lüdenscheid

* Meinerzhagen
Meinerzhagen
* Menden * Nachrodt-Wiblingwerde * Neuenrade * Plettenberg * Schalksmühle
Schalksmühle
* Werdohl
Werdohl

OLPE

* Attendorn * Drolshagen
Drolshagen
* Lennestadt
Lennestadt
* Olpe

* Finnentrop
Finnentrop
* Kirchhundem
Kirchhundem
* Wenden

SOEST

* Ense * Möhnesee

* Rüthen * Warstein

WALDECK-FRANKENBERG

* Upland

ECONOMY

Parts of the Sauerland, especially the major valleys in the northwest, represent an old industrial region. The availability of iron ore and the abundance of wood and water allowed iron production long before the Ruhr area
Ruhr area
industrialisation and the mining of its coal took place. Today there are only a few remains of this early heavy industry ; wire production is still important in Altena
Altena
and a number of small factories still occupy the old industrial areas. Warsteiner is Germany's largest privately owned brewery.

TOURISM

The "Emperor Chamber" in the Dechen Cave at Iserlohn
Iserlohn

Today the Sauerland
Sauerland
is a popular tourist area, attracting many visitors from the Ruhr Area
Ruhr Area
and relatively close Netherlands
Netherlands
. The forests and picturesque small towns are attractive for hikers and outdoor sports. There are more than 30,000 km of tagged hiking trails in Sauerland
Sauerland
region maintained by Sauerland
Sauerland
hiking association (SGV). Some of the towns have the title Bad (Spa) because of their good air quality and stimulating climate. Winter sports are popular in the Sauerland. The bob sleigh track in Winterberg is widely known in Germany, as well as the ski jumping in Willingen . Sauerland
Sauerland
also has a successful theme park called Fort Fun .

Balve
Balve
Cave is one of the biggest prehistorical caves of Europe and is situated in Balve
Balve
. The largest accessible limestone cave outside the Alps is in Attendorn .

TRANSPORT

The Sauerland
Sauerland
can be reached by car or train. The drive either via the BAB 4 from Cologne
Cologne
or via the BAB 45 and BAB 46 from Dortmund
Dortmund
, takes about one hour; from Kassel
Kassel
or Frankfurt
Frankfurt
- Rhine-Main (via the Sauerlandlinie ) the journey takes about two hours. Iserohn station has regular regional train services. The closest commercial airport is Dortmund
Dortmund
Airport .

* Bundesautobahn 4
Bundesautobahn 4
* Bundesautobahn 44
Bundesautobahn 44
* Bundesautobahn 45 ( Sauerlandlinie ) * Bundesautobahn 46

SEE ALSO

* NRW portal

* Arnsberg Forest
Forest
Nature Park * Sauerländer Heimatbund * List of castles in North Rhine-Westphalia *