The French-German border cuts straight through a complex of archaeological sites, most of which date to the Iron Age & Roman Era. A perfect occasion to explain that our present borders are in our minds, not in reality. Archaeologist Jean Schaub founded the European Culture park at both sides of the border – in France at Bliesbruck, in Germany at Gersheim-Reinheim.
The park’s peculiarity is that it offers visitors a chance to walk among ruins, which are explained by means of bilingual panels that explain the site’s history and its reconstructed buildings. On the French side, the archaeology park was set up around the remains of a spa bath and handicraft centre of a city which flourished between the 1st and 3rd century AD. On the German side, you walk past the ruins of a Roman villa, and a series of tombs with a burial mound, among which the most significant is that of the Celtic “Princess of Reinheim”, dating back to the 5th century BC. The tomb contains copies of some splendid objects that were buried with her.
The archaeological investigations have not yet been concluded, and every year groups from all over Europe are invited to take part in excavations.
The Kulturpark also features a museum with a permanent archaeology collection, which displays original objects uncovered at the site. During the Summer, there is a programme of demonstrations evoking ancient practices.