North Rhine-Westphalia (Nordrhein-Westfalen) is a state in the northwest of Germany.
- Rhineland (Rheinland)
- Westphalia (Westfalen)
- Düsseldorf - the state capital
- Aachen (bicycle friendly city)
- Bonn state capital city of West Germany from 1949 to 1990
- Cologne (Köln)
- Solingen (City of blades)
- Munster (Münster) (bicycle friendly city)
- Sankt Augustin
- Wuppertal (the city with the legendary overhead railway (Schwebebahn))
Northrhine-Westphalia (Nordrhein-Westfalen – for short NRW) is an artifical state, founded 1946 by the British Government. It consists, as the name indicates, of the province Westphalia in the east and the northern Rhinelands in the west. And the hyphen symbolizes the attempt to bind people whose nature is so very incompatible and stands also for the gap between the ethnic groups. This gap runs from the southeast to the northwest for 283 kilometers across the state. The Westphalien guy is said to be a little bit tight-lipped but very reliable while the Rhinelanders are full of life and sometimes a little bit noisy. Knowing this makes it easier for a visitor to understand some attitudes, furthermore handle it like the locals - take it in a good spirit.
On a geological view the northern part of NRW is flat farmland and is known for its expertise in horse breeding, while the southern part is mountainous, up to 1000 meters above sea leavel. It's numerous brooks turned the wheels of numerous handicrafts before the steam engine was invented.
In the middle in all aspects - geographic and ethnic - there exists the Ruhr Area (Ruhrgebiet), for short "The Ruhr" which is at least the name of the river at whose banks the region is situated. It arose during the past 150 years by immigrants from all over Europe but has strong roots in Westphalia and the Rhinelands also. The region had been and is still a bit the heard of heavy industry in Germany, based on coal and steel. Althrough mining has come to an end the identification of the people is strongly derivated from heavy industry.
NRW has about 18 Million inhabitants which makes it the state with the highst population in Germany NRW is number four in the largest German states 34 of the 100 largest companies in Germany have their heardquarten in NRW, 9 of the 100 largest European companies have their headquarter in NRW.
The capital is Düsseldorf. The largest city of the state is Cologne. The Ruhr is the third largest urban region in middle Europe, after London and Paris.
Public transport is very easy. You need only one ticket for local, regional and express trains (no high speed trains), light rail systems, trams and buses in the whole North Rhine-Westphalia. You don't need to purchase another ticket when you change from local train to bus, light rail and tram. Example: You purchased a ticket from Aachen to Wuppertal for local, regional and express trains. Whith this ticket you can use the monorail (Schwebebahn) and the city bus system in Wuppertal.
- Hotel Lindenhof, Emsdetten.
A clean and comfortable inn with breakfast each morning, including soft boiled eggs, cold cuts and cheeses, an assorment of breads, rolls and spreads, juice, coffee, tea and cereals. Located within walking distance of the train station with free parking and internet access. Excellent onsite restaurant with traditional German fare is served including pork, mushrooms and spatzel, fresh, local produce. There is a lovely, small garden in back which serves as a nice place to unwind after a long day. Toiletries are not provided.
This page was last edited at 07:39, on 12 March 2009 by Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel. Based on work by Berlin Traveler, Hans-Jürgen Wiese, Jim Nicholson, Peter Fitzgerald, David and Aimee Desrosiers, Wikitravel user(s) Vidimian, DorganBot, Morph, Ypsilon and 3wisemen, Anonymous user(s) of Wikitravel and others.