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World’s Most Bizarre Border: Bicycle Path Crossing from Belgium into Germany

Daniel Kim Views  

There’s a fascinating border where the road you’re walking on is in Belgium, but both sides of the road are in Germany.

The most complicated border in the world is in Monschau, Germany, which borders Belgium. A Belgian bicycle road traverses German territory, creating a strip of Belgian territory within Germany. The bicycle road was originally a railway called Vennbahn. The railway, which connected Germany’s Aachen and Luxembourg, was built by Prussian state railways and was crucial in transporting military supplies during World War I.

After World War I in 1919, Germany had to cede territories to neighboring countries through the Treaty of Versailles. As a result, the territory around Monschau and the Vennbahn railway became part of Belgium, leading to the unique situation we see today.

There are five German exclaves in the Monschau region, like islands surrounded by Belgian territory. Residents of these exclaves leave their homes on German territory and cross the Belgian road to enter Germany.

The lives of the border residents are also unique. Bicycle accidents require different follow-up measures depending on whether the accident occurred on or off the bicycle road because traffic regulations in Germany and Belgium vary. Residents even say, “If you have an accident on the road, roll into German territory” because German emergency facilities are closer to this road.

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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