On the East bank of the River Rhine sits the town and commune of Weil am Rhein. One of the town’s many unique features is that it is very close to the point where the German, Swiss and French borders meet.
The most southwesterly town in Germany; Weil has Switzerland to the south and France to the west, and it is also close to the Black Forest which is to the east of the town. Weil is in the region of Germany known as the Markgräflerland.
The climate in Weil am Rhein is, in general, warm and mild with an average temperature of around 10°C. Rain is not uncommon throughout the year, but the general weather is good.
Because of its unique position in the triangle of three borders, Weil am Rhein enjoys a rich and extremely varied cuisine that caters for all tastes. As well as traditional German food there is also French, Italian, Greek, Chinese, vegetarian and vegan food available at a host of restaurants, ranging from budget menus to Michelin listed haute cuisine.
Recipes from around the world can easily be found in the city and its surrounding areas.
PLACES OF INTEREST
Vitra Design Museum
Weil am Rhein has connections with some of the world’s most renowned architects. Buildings designed by Tadao Ando, Frank Gehry and Zaha Hadid are featured amongst the premises of the furniture maker Vitra and the main building of the Design Museum was designed by Frank Gehry. This structure is home to two temporary exhibitions each year. In the adjoining Vitra Design Gallery, smaller exhibitions are displayed.
Overall, the Design Museum offers a stunning and spectacular insight into the history and present state of design as well as the experience of some wonderful architecture.
The Museum is open daily from 10 am to 6 pm with the exception of Christmas Eve when it closes at 2 pm. The Museum is also open on Sundays and public holidays. Admission is around 11€, and 17€ for the museum and a show, with children entering at a reduced price. There are other discounts available.
Weil am Rhein features no less than four municipal museums. These are scattered across the city and, apart from the Vitra Design Museum, they are:
• Museum at the Lindenplatz.
This is housed in a building dating from 1845. Exhibitions focus on local life.
• The Gallery Stapflehus.
This beautiful historic building, dating from around 1565 is home to exhibitions of modern art.
• The Agricultural Museum
It is housed in a two-hundred-year-old barn and celebrates the agricultural life that sustained the city.
Three Countries Bridge
The Three Counties Bridge derives its name from its position as it sits on the corner of Germany, France and Switzerland. With a span of just over 229 metres, it is the longest pedestrian-only bridge in the world. The Bridge crosses the Rhine and joins Weil am Rhein with Huningue in France. Only pedestrians and cyclists are permitted on the bridge, which is free to cross and offers wonderful views.
This huge water-activity leisure centre is a must for families. There are a variety of features and activities including:
• An all-year-round outdoor pool
• Wave pool
• Adventure pool
• Children’s paddling pool
• 25-metre sports pool
• Whitewater and black hole water slides
All of which are heated and there are special events, contests and other attractions throughout the year. The Laguna Badeland has a restaurant that should cater for most tastes. Entrance fees start at around 12€ and rise according to the length of the visit and facilities accessed. There are reductions for children, senior citizens and others.
As its name suggests, the Rheinpark is situated beside the river and offers wonderful scenery for peaceful walks and exploration. Trees, greenery and long walks are to be found. There are also a large number of cafes, restaurants and other facilities scattered throughout the Park, making it a great place to explore and enjoy the wonderful scenery.
Street Workout Park
This outdoor gym and callisthenics park is situated in the DreiLänderGarten near the Swiss border. The Park is equipped with a wide variety of bars and other devices that are free to use. This is a perfect place for fitness enthusiasts, or even for a more gentle workout or stroll.
The Black Forest
Weil am Rhein is on the edge of the Black Forest’s southernmost foothills. This makes it the perfect place to explore the Black Forest.The Forest’s varied, rolling landscape, including hills and mountains, is perfect for exploring on foot or by car.
The world famous for its culinary delights (who hasn’t heard of Black Forest Gateau?) and crafts, the Black Forest is easily reachable from Weil am Rhein.
THINGS TO DO
Weil am Rhein has a wealth of clubs, bars, discotheques and restaurants, as well as cafes. And shisha bars are also the favourite places for visitors to head to. Some of the more popular venues are:
• Jim Knopf Musikpub and Cocktail Bar
• Royal Lounge Bar (a shisha/hookah bar)
• N’Joy Shisha Bar
• Café Divan Shisha bar
• Pusis-Cat Cabaret
• IQ Lounge (Shisha/hooka bar
• Lady Christine bar
• Bammert-Stube bar
• PRC Lörrach dance club
• Chrissis café- Bar –Restaurant
• Saalbau Ryhpark dance club, music venue
• EG Lounge cocktail bar
• Irrsinn Bar for varied drinks and music
Weil am Rhein has a network of transborder bicycle paths that make it a perfect destination for those who wish to take cycling holidays or rent cycles for day excursions and exploration. There are bicycle rental shops in the city.
Other activities available in the city’s ImPULSIV Freizeit Centre include:
As well as a range of saunas, solariums, bistros and a games centre.
Play miniature golf in the beautiful Rheinpark.
Weil am Rhein’s unique position makes it a wonderful place from which to take a boat excursion on the Rhine and explore the Dreiländereck from the water. Cruise and lunch, relax and take a drink and enjoy the unique location and scenery.
There are special events at various times throughout the year that can be enjoyed from the luxurious surroundings of one of the ships that sail the Rhine.
Weil am Rhein is renowned for its cultural lifestyle and throughout the year there are various music festivals.
WHERE TO STAY
Please note that this is not intended as a comprehensive list, so please make sure you research other hotels in and around Weil am Rhein.
Right next to the three-star hotel is the Swiss border crossing, making it the most southwesterly hotel in the tri-border region known as the Dreiländereck.
The Hotel offers some fine views, including one of the Three Countries Bridge and, is perfectly placed to make the most of Weil’s unique tri-border position.
Prices for a single room start around 44€.
This four-star hotel is also located in the Dreiländereck, making it a perfect place to explore the three borders area. The hotel is right beside the Rhine and offers wonderful views. Room prices per person start from around 30€.
This three-star hotel in the Haltingen district of Weil has the added convenience of being on the bus route to the Swiss city of Basel and the buses stop right outside. Within a few minutes, passengers are already at the Swiss border. Within ten to twenty minutes passengers can reach the city of Basel, the Trade Fair, rail station and the airport.
All rooms have a bath and a shower and there is a Greek restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine. Prices for rooms start at around 48€.
B & B Hotel
A two-star hotel, the B & B is a larger hotel offering economic accommodation close to all the main areas and attractions. Prices per night start from around 60€.
Weil am Rhein has several major shopping outlets:
• Rhein Centre
• Outlet Centre
As well as a number of department stores and smaller shops.
Popular with Swiss shoppers, Weil am Rhein’s shopping opportunities are as lively as every other aspect.
The city and surrounding areas are served by a sound infrastructure with buses and trams as well as taxis readily available.
What makes Weil am Rhein unique is it’s location in the triangle of the French, Swiss and German borders. This makes crossing borders and exploring other countries and cultures extremely easy. The city is also steeped in historic significance and is rich in culture. The Rhine itself offers what only such a river can.
The visitor seeking their fill of art and culture will not be disappointed. Nor will the music lover. The extensive range of accommodation available should provide something for all tastes and budgets.
Because of its position, so close to France and Switzerland, Weil am Rhein enjoys a truly multi-cultural life, characterised by its international cuisine, music and culture. Almost every taste is catered for.
Local history is not ignored and the museums and galleries provide a fascinating insight into the city’s past. A bustling nightlife offers visitors a host of opportunities to relax and there are a number of choices and venues to enjoy sporting and other activities.