Germany’s Westernmost Point near Selfkant-Isenbruch (Pictured Story)

The Selfkant is truly a remarkable municipality in the very West of the Federal Republic of Germany. The border to the Netherlands is more than four times longer than to other parts of Germany, for example. The neighbor state even administered the region from 1949 until 1963, as part of repatriation measures for WWII. Since then, the Selfkant also hosts the Westernmost point of Germany. As I checked out the DoubleTree by Hilton Sittard in the region anyway, I just had to check out this very special place and share it with you in one of my Pictured Stories.


Germany’s Westernmost Point – Location & Traffic

Germany’s Westernmost point is located Northwest of the borough of Isenbruch, which thereby correctly names itself being Germany’s Westernmost Village, as you see in the sign on the picture above. You reach the point through the Ijsstraat from the Dutch side or the corresponding community road from the German side. There is also an on-demand bus service on weekends. The geographical point is nicely maintained with a lot of historic information. There is even a car park for some ten vehicles. Another good way to reach the point is by bike. The facilities are open air and can be visited anytime. There is even a public toilet.


Views and History of Selfkant – Isenbruch

If there weren’t several signs and the historic (still valid) border stone, you nowadays only recognize that you transfer from Germany to the Netherlands as the traffic signs and marks on the road are slightly changing. The in-fact border is crossing a settlement. The Northern part belongs to the Netherlands, the Southern part to Germany. The area is also quite relevant for the geography of the Netherlands. It is often called flessenhals (“Bottleneck”) as the beeline to the Dutch-Belgian border is less than five kilometers. The place is thus also the narrowest part of the Kingdom.

The parking lot and the information center is located just a short distance South of the border. It is absolutely worth to stop there and read through all the signs (in case you understand German or Dutch, at least). For example, you learn about the history of the area. Even nowadays, the Selfkant is collaborating closely with the Dutch neighbors, the Schengen treaty eliminated all border controls anyway. You also learn why there is a small “dent” in the borderline. Without that, a Dutch trader would have been separated from his storage. It would have been located in Germany instead. You also see how many trucks gathered in the area just before 1st August 1963 (when there was still a Dutch-German border). At midnight of that day, the area became part of Germany. Thus, the load of the trucks transferred from one country to the other without the need of paying tolls and import taxes.


A Short Walk To The Westernmost Point of Germany

Nowadays, a short wooden footbridge is leading you to the in fact Westernmost point of Germany. You walk along the small creek Rodebach before you reach the memorial. Apart from a bench-alike structure (you can sit n the Netherlands with your feet being in Germany…), a pole is marking the geographic landmark. It somehow feels funny to be there. In that moment, you know that no person in Germany is being more to the West than yourself. The 4.8km Flessehals marking is there as well.

By the way, the Selfkant co-founded the Zipfelbund (literally: “Tip Association”), which is a sister-city of the most geogrpahically extreme points in Germany. Apart from that municipality, it includes List on the island of Sylt (Northernmost point), Görlitz in Saxony (Easternmost point) and Oberstorf (Southernmost point). The first meeting of the majors of these four cities was in May 1998 in the Selfkant. Finally, the Zipfelbund was finally founded in 1999. in Aachen

Here are all my postings related to the German city of Aachen:


Flyctory Obscura

Flyctory Obscura-tagged reviews represent weird, unique, entertaining places of all kind:

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