Bridge and Lock over the River Moselle
Located in the heart of Europe, between Germany and Luxembourg, Thionville is the main city of the Three Borders Area. A former Palace of Carolingian rulers, fiefdom of the Dukes of Luxembourg, sometimes German and sometimes French… In historical terms, Thionville has a lot to offer.
Traces of the past can be found everywhere in this area which is dominated by the presence of the Moselle river. The river flows slowly and majestically through the valley and vines cling to its sides at every meander. Nearby, the Châteaux stand guard peacefully over the neighbouring borders whilst several kilometres away below the surface, there are sites which have been transformed into places of remembrance. Remembering stories of the iron mines and of a fortification which was said to be impassable!
Tour Thionville and discover its surprises followed by an exceptional organ recital in the impressive church of St Maximin. Later, you meet the owners of the very beautiful Lorraine castle of «De La Grange». You will be enchanted by its magnificent park, which is a registered «Garden without Limits». Last but not least, you can visit the renowned «Leisen» distillery. Hear about the distilling process and taste the famous mirabelle plum liqueur.
To fully appreciate this area, do not fail to enjoy its rich natural heritage of forests and plateaus where you can wonder at more than 25 different species of orchid or leisurely hike or cycle along well-signposted routes. Take your bicycle and leave at your own pace, with or without a guide for a route of 30 km or 60 km which will enable you to discover the area of Thionville, its remarkable sites, its cultural heritage, and the beautiful valley of the Moselle. Suited for cyclists of all levels and you can rent a bike. This is quite a place!
Castle of Volkrange:
Built between 1242 and 1248, the castle possesses undeniable architectural qualities which bear witness to the region’s history. Surrounded by ditches, this residence is protected by two towers, whose roofs have been completely restored. Inside, we can see beautiful keystones and a French-style ceiling.
The outstanding collection of 18th-century furniture, objects d’art, ceramics and paintings make this château built in 1731 particularly interesting. One of its charms is that it has been home to the same family for more than 250 years. The recently-created Jardin des Prairiales, a garden laid out by Franck Neau as part of the cross-border “Gardens without Borders” network, provides a beautiful setting for the château.
Fortified Group of Guentrange:
Constructed by the Germans between 1899 and 1906, it has three barracks and two artillery sections of four 10cm cannons. It was
constructed with a view to protecting Thionville and its large rail network against any French attack. Although having an extremely important strategic role to play, the Fortified Group was not attacked during the First World War. Having passed under French control after the 1918 armistice, it then formed part of the Maginot Line in 1930.
In 1940, the Germans renovated the Fortified Group and used it as a depository and workshop, before it was finally taken over by the US Army in 1944. After the War, the Fortified Group was used as a weapons store for the 25th artillery regiment.
Since 1971, it has no longer been used for military purposes. Thanks to the efforts of Thionville and the Amicale du Groupe fortifié de Guentrange, it has become a monument for remembrance tourism in Lorraine