The Vosges du Nord Regional Nature Park
Baerenthal is situated in the middle of a vast rural area that makes up the Regional Nature Parks, the Vosges Du Nord in France and Pfâlzerwald en Germany.
The role of a Nature Park is
• To protect and look after the countryside and its wildlife
• To highlight the heritage
• To make people aware of their environment
• To develop the regional economy
The Vosges du Nord Regional Nature Park, was created in 1975, ⅔ in the Bas Rhin and a ⅓ in Moselle. The Park was chosen because of its unusual geographical conditions, its remarkable natural richness and culture but also for its economical situation. Sixty five percent of the 130500 hectares are forest. There are 37 castles, 113 historic monuments, classed and reserved sites and also 1330 identified archaeological sites.
In 1989, the area was classed “a Biosphere Reserve” by the UNESCO for its natural and cultural heritage.
Because Baerenthal was extremely damaged during the last war, the new buildings were influenced both by the Alsatian architecture and the Vosges’ large houses built with red sandstone.
The local dialect which is a mixture of Lorraine, Alsatian and French, is part of the cultural heritage.
There are two sites in the village that are part of “Pays de Bitche’s Rock and Peat Nature Reserve” and because of this title are particularly protected. The first site can be found at the top half of the fishing lake, a real bird sanctuary with an observation post. The second is a bat reserve situated in the old Maginot Line galleries at the foot of Ramstein Castle.
To preserve this exceptional site, follow these simple actions:
• When you go to the forest, park in the car parks. Keep to the tracks, footpaths and signed ways.
• Keep quiet. Observe the wildlife and keep you animals on a lead.
• Preserve the ruins and other sites. Respect the signalisation.
• Don’t drop litter. Take it home with you and remember fires are forbidden.