The Three-Border Region in Vaals
3 countries, 1 mountain
The province of Limburg, located in the far south of the Netherlands, is squeezed in between the neighboring countries of Belgium and Germany. At its southernmost point is the town of Vaals, only 5 km away from the German city of Aachen. The Dutch, most of whom live in flat polder areas, and some of whom even live below sea level, are proud of their 323 m high Vaalserberg. As a result, the mountain has also become a popular destination for trips. A viewing tower at its peak gives a free view over 3 countries: Belgium, Germany and Holland. Incidentally, the Top 10 highest mountains in Holland are located in the province of Limburg (the 877 m high Mount Scenery on the island of Saba, which belongs to the Dutch Antilles, doesn't count).
Activities and sightseeing in the Three-Border Region
The Dutch aren't the only ones who've erected a viewing tower at the Three-Border Region; the Belgians have too. And this means that you can look over at the neighbors on both sides of the border. These are the things worth seeing around the Vaalserberg:
The 34 m high Wilhelmina Tower (Wilhelminatoren) on the Dutch side has an impressive skywalk; a viewing platform with a glass floor which provides a spectacular panoramic view.
At the foot of the tower, you'll find a brasserie and the monument to a plane crash.
The labyrinth on the Vaalserberg (Viergrenzenweg 97) is a real experience, especially for children. For €5 per person, you can take part in the search for the center of the labyrinth.
The highest playground in the Netherlands can also be found at the tripoint.
The 50 m Baudouin Tower stands on the Belgian side of the Three-Border Region.
The wooded area around the Three-Border Region is very suitable for walks. At the labyrinth, there's a VVV service point, with information about walking routes and other activities.
You may be feeling a little hungry after all the activities and information about the interesting history of the Three-Border Region. Fortunately, there's a restaurant here which is famous for its great pancakes.
Location and getting to the Three-Border Region
The Three-Border Region, the southernmost point of the Netherlands, is about 40 km away from Maastricht, the capital of the Dutch province of Limburg. From Maastricht, a bus will bring you to Vaals, from which there is another bus to the tripoint. If you're traveling by car, you can park directly at the foot of the Wilhelmina Tower.
Trip destinations near the Three-Border Region
Maastricht, the historic capital of the province of Limburg, is a wonderful starting point for anyone who loves shopping and going out. You'll also find plenty of interesting things to see concerning the checkered history of the city, which ranges back to the Roman era. Only half an hour away from the Three-Border Region by car, the little town of Valkenburg aan de Geul invites you to come and look at the castle ruins and the famous marl caves. In Heerlen you can visit a 2000-year-old Roman baths. Walkers and cyclists will be enchanted by the magical countryside of Limburg which - in contrast to the rest of the Netherlands - is characterized by hills and vineyards.
The vineyards of Maastricht
The best Dutch wines are produced in the vineyards around Maastricht.
Would you like to visit the Three-Border Region? Then you can stay in one of the comfortable hotels in Vaals. In this area, you'll find some extraordinary places to stay, such as Bloemendal Castle and Vaalsbroek Castle, which even has its own spa area. If you fancy something more down-to-earth, you can stay in a B&B or hire a vacation home.