Bergisches Land

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Bergisches Land in Germany
Bergischer lion on a glass window

The Bergisches Land is a region in North Rhine-Westphalia ( Germany ) named after the historical territory of the Duchy of Berg . It is located on the right bank of the Rhine and, in addition to the Bergisch city triangle Remscheid - Solingen - Wuppertal, also includes the Mettmann district , the independent city of Leverkusen , the Rheinisch-Bergisch and Oberbergischer districts and parts of the Rhein-Sieg district . The historically significant Bergisch cities of Mülheim an der Ruhr and Düsseldorf as well as the parts of Cologne on the right bank of the Rhine are currently less part of the Bergisches Land.

The Bergisches Land lies mainly in the rainy ( windward side ) west of the northeast wing ( Süderbergland ) of the Rhenish Slate Mountains , the main rivers are the Wupper (Niederbergisches) and the Agger (Oberbergisches Land). The highest mountain is at 519  m above sea level. NHN the Homert near Gummersbach; the highest publicly accessible point is about 6 km west-southwest of it on the Unnenberg ( 505.7  m above sea level ): the viewing platform of the 45 m high Unnenberg tower at a height of 31.8 m .


The term Bergisches Land was already in use before the 19th century, but became popular after the dissolution of the Duchy of Berg . Colloquially, the Bergisch form is very common. In the Bergisch dialects , the form is mostly Bergsches Land . The inhabitants are the Berger or the Bergisch .

For example, Düsseldorf as the former residential capital of the Duchy of Berg does not have the Bergisch, which has recently been interpreted as a hill country . This shift in the interpretation of the name, which is not only illustrated in the Bergisches Heimatlied , means that other significant places are now less of a matter of course part of the Bergisches Land, but rather the more flat Lower Rhine plain . As a result, there are no clouds that have drifted up the mountain flanks and thus the high precipitation and typical weather patterns of the Bergisches Land described in the article.




Duchies of Jülich and Berg (Iuliacensis et Montensis Ducatus), 1645, Atlas Maior

The Bergisches Land emerged from the historic Duchy of Berg. The region owes its name to the former sovereigns, the counts (and later dukes) von Berg . The adjectival Latin term terre Montensis , i.e. of the Bergisches Land , was first recorded in writing in a bond document of the Bergische Counts dated September 6, 1363 , although terra de Monte or Land von Berg already appeared in earlier documents .

Important places in the duchy were Gerresheim , Elberfeld , Solingen, Lennep , Radevormwald , Wipperfürth , Bensberg , Siegburg and Blankenberg , most of which received city rights from the 13th century. The seat of the counts and dukes was initially the Berge Castle in Altenberg near Odenthal , after the construction of Neuenberg Castle the place Burg an der Wupper (today a district of Solingen) and then from 1386 to 1822 Düsseldorf , which the dukes became a representative residence - and expanded the capital of the duchy. The Bergische Löwe in the Düsseldorf city coat of arms still indicates the historical affiliation of Düsseldorf to the Bergisches Land .

The cities of Mülheim an der Ruhr , parts of Duisburg and Oberhausen ( Alstaden and Dümpten ) belonged to the northern parts of the Bergisches Land, and the areas on the western border also included the right bank of Cologne near Mülheim . Smaller areas on the left bank of the Rhine belonging to the duchy were also the freedom Wesseling , Rodenkirchen , Orr and Langel .

The former lords of Gimborn and Homburg in what is now the Oberbergischer Kreis, on the other hand, only became part of the Grand Duchy of Berg during the time of Napoleon . This originally non-Bergisch area includes Marienheide , Wiehl , Nümbrecht , Stadt Neustadt and today's district town of the Upper Bergisch district: Gummersbach .

In 1815 the Grand Duchy of Berg was dissolved and in 1822 it was added to the Prussian Rhine Province , with the northern part of which the Bergisches Land became part of the Rhineland as part of North Rhine-Westphalia after the Second World War .

Physically, geographically and spatially

In terms of natural space , the Bergisches Land is almost entirely part of the main unit group Süderbergland , which also includes almost the entire Sauerland . The Süderbergland represents the northeastern part of the slate mountains on the right bank of the Rhine .

Natural orographic borders form the Ruhr in the north, the Rhine in the west and the Sieg in the south . Opposite this, the Bergisches Land merges to the east with no recognizable landscape boundary into the Sauerland. Political and cultural differences alone determine the borderline between the two historical landscapes, which however roughly corresponds to the eastern watersheds of Wupper and Agger , while the (western) Sauerland is mainly drained by the Ruhr and its tributaries.

Most of the Bergisches Land is characterized by a varied low mountain range with forests, meadows and hills as well as narrow valley valleys - also known as " Siepen " - with small streams. With the exception of the areas that merge into the Sauerland, the Bergisch is referred to as the Fast Plain due to the advanced erosion of the mountains .

The low mountain range turns westwards over various heather terraces into a plain without significant elevations, which is heavily sprawled by the urban agglomerations of Cologne and Düsseldorf and - compared to the low mountain range - is very little structured. With a few isolated heather relics , such as the Wahner , Hildener and Ohligser Heide , the extensive Königsforst forest and individual quarry ponds , such as the Unterbacher or the Elbsee , valuable nature reserves and recreational areas for the residents of the surrounding cities are located here.

The Bergisches Land nature park also defines the area as a recreational area. Although the proportion of forest is quite large, there are only a few larger contiguous forest areas. Wooded ridges in long waves and meadow valleys shape the landscape. To the east, the proportion of the forest landscape increases due to the less favorable weather conditions associated with the altitude for agriculture. Beech forests and beech-oak forests in particular would naturally grow on the slopes. Since the significant deforestation in the early modern period, however, large areas have been reforested with the previously non-native spruce. The Nutscheid on the southern edge of the Bergisch is one of the largest forest areas and largely uninhabited. Another large forest area is the rear between Engelskirchen , Drabenderhöhe and Overath - Federath .

According to today's regional awareness

In today's regional awareness, the Bergisches Land corresponds to the "low mountain range Bergisches Land". In the former Bergische Rhine and Ruhr cities (Düsseldorf, southern districts of Oberhausen, Duisburg-Süd and Mülheim an der Ruhr), the population is hardly aware of the historical affiliation with Bergisch. In these places today, the majority of you see yourself as Rhinelander or belonging to the Ruhr area . Above the Rhine plain, however, belonging to the Bergisch is self-evident in consciousness. So in the news of the WDR only the eastern areas are referred to as "Bergisches Land", whereas the western areas are included in the unclearly circumscribed " Rhineland ". The Mettmann district is also included in the Bergisches Land cultural region .

The capital of the Bergisches Land is usually no longer the historic capital of Düsseldorf , but the city of Wuppertal , which was established in 1929 and forms the economic, cultural and industrial center of the eastern Bergisches Land. The south of the region has now developed a stronger relationship to Cologne .


View of Velbert-Langenberg
Moated castle "Haus zum Haus" in Ratingen
The Flandersbach lime works near Europe's largest lime mining in Wülfrath

Niederbergisches Land

The north and northwest of the Bergisches Land form the Niederbergisches Land , which is traversed by the Angerbach and the Düssel . One section of the Düssel is the Neandertal , where the Ice Age man of the same name was found. The Deilbach forms the eastern border . The area of ​​the Niederbergisches Land is in the modern understanding of the Mettmann district and includes the towns of Ratingen , Heiligenhaus , Velbert , Wülfrath , Haan and Erkrath in addition to the district town of the same name . Since the historical borders of the Bergisches Land ran in today's Ruhr area and along the Rhine, Düsseldorf , Mülheim an der Ruhr , and part of Oberhausen ( Alstaden ) can also be counted as part of the Niederbergisches Land. In Mettmann, Wülfrath and Langenberg , the old town center with half-timbered houses that form a ring around the church or the market has been preserved. The villages of Gruiten and Düssel , which also have a historical center with well-preserved half-timbered houses, are located in or not far from it . In Wülfrath, 9.7 million tons of limestone are mined annually in Europe's largest lime works.

Bergisches city triangle

Solingen sword from the 17th century

To the south-east is the Bergisch city triangle , which is made up of the major cities of Wuppertal , Solingen and Remscheid and is today neither part of the Lower nor the Upper Bergisches Land . The formative river is the Wupper . The historic centers of the Bergisches Land Lennep and Burg an der Wupper are also located on the edge of the city triangle .


Wuppertal was founded on August 1, 1929 from the previous cities of Barmen , Elberfeld , Cronenberg , Ronsdorf and Vohwinkel and the Beyenburg district and is mainly located in the long valley through which the Wupper flows. The symbol of the city is the Wuppertal suspension railway , opened in 1901 by Kaiser Wilhelm II , which was built largely over the Wupper for reasons of space. In the middle of the 19th century, over 100,000 people lived in what is now the city area - at that time still separated into the cities of Elberfeld and Barmen. Only a few cities in Germany had more inhabitants. Elberfeld and Barmen were one of the most important banking and trading centers in Prussia . The world's first electric cog railway ran in Barmen.

Heroin was invented in Elberfeld in 1896 and aspirin in 1897 in the Elberfeld paint factories (formerly Friedrich Bayer & Co., now Bayer AG) and today's global corporation Bayer was founded in 1904 . Even today home to Wuppertal z. B. with the Barmer GEK , the Barmenia Insurance , Vorwerk and Erfurt & Sohn . The Briller Quarter in Elberfeld is one of the largest residential areas in Germany. Culturally noteworthy are several museums, e.g. For example, the Museum for Early Industrialization with the Engels House, the Wuppertal Clock Museum , also known as the Abeler Museum, the Von-der-Heydt Museum , the Wuppertal Bible Museum , the historic swimming opera (Wuppertal) , the historic Wuppertal town hall and the world-famous Pina Bausch dance theater , the opera house and the scenic Wuppertal zoo .

The world famous logo

The blades and cutlery ( Zwilling JA Henckels ) come from Solingen , as does the Knirps umbrella. The largest of the three remaining trolleybus networks in Germany can be found there. The Müngstener Brücke - Germany's highest railway bridge - crosses the Wupper between Solingen and Remscheid. Another attraction a few kilometers south of the bridge is Burg Castle - ancestral castle of the Counts and Dukes of Berg - in the Solingen district of Burg an der Wupper.


In relation to the city center, Remscheid is the highest city north of the Danube . There is one of the steepest inner-city streets in Germany with a gradient of 24 percent. The city of Lennep , which was incorporated into Remscheid in 1929, is the second oldest city (city survey 1230) in the Bergisches Land and has a well-preserved ensemble of Bergisch half-timbered houses. Remscheid is known for its metal and tool industry and is home to well-known companies (including the Vaillant Group ). The origin of the former Mannesmann AG was also here . The city's most famous son is Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen , whose historical discovery can be seen in the German Röntgen Museum .

Oberbergisches Land

In the historical sense, the Oberbergisches Land comprises the Rheinisch-Bergisches Kreis , the Oberbergischer Kreis , the right bank of the Rhein-Sieg district and the independent city of Leverkusen . It thus begins behind the Bergisch city triangle and extends in the south to the Sieg and in the east to the Sauerland . Well-known rivers are the Wupper tributary Dhünn , the Sieg tributary Agger and the Agger tributaries Sülz and Wiehl . Characteristic of the Oberbergisches Land are also its reservoirs Great Dhünn , Agger and Wiehl reservoir along the corresponding rivers.

In addition to the district town of Bergisch Gladbach , Burscheid , Kürten , Leichlingen (Rhineland) , Odenthal , Overath , Rösrath and Wermelskirchen belong to the Rheinisch-Bergischen district . The Oberbergische Kreis includes the district town of Gummersbach and the other places Bergneustadt , Hückeswagen , Lindlar , Marienheide , Wipperfürth , Radevormwald , Reichshof , Nümbrecht , Morsbach , Waldbröl , Wiehl and Engelskirchen .

The west of the Oberbergisches Land, which borders Cologne , is a popular residential area for commuters from the surrounding cities.


The rains in the Bergisches Land are proverbial

With western air currents, humid Atlantic air masses in the Bergisches Land encounter an obstacle for the first time and are dammed up ( windward position ). The result is uphill rain that increases over a relatively short distance from 800 mm in the west to over 1350 mm in the east as an annual mean. The annual mean temperature is 7 to 10 ° C and the number of days with a temperature> 10 ° C ( vegetation period ) is between 150 and 180 days. During the growing season, the mean temperature is 13 to 16 ° C. With these climatic characteristics, very favorable growing conditions are given for the natural vegetation. Due to the danger of heavy rain and late frosts, the conditions for agriculture are difficult, especially in the eastern Upper Bergisches Land, and have been limited to cattle breeding and silviculture since time immemorial.



The two main rivers of the Bergisches Land are the Agger , which takes about a third of the catchment area of ​​the Sieg, in the south and the Wupper, which drains directly to the Rhine, to the north of it. Both have catchment areas of over 800 km² and together drain almost the entire region.

Other inner rivers with a catchment area of ​​over 100 km² are the Düssel (north of the Wupper, to the Rhine), the Dhünn (from left to the Wupper), Sülz and Wiehl (from right or left to the Agger) and in the extreme southeast the Bröl ( to victory).

The Aubach (Wildbergerhütte) in the Bergisches Land nature park.

Clockwise, starting in the south, the rivers Sieg , Rhine , Ruhr and Deilbach (to the Ruhr) form roughly the border rivers in sections. The central eastern border coincides almost exactly with the watershed from Agger and Wupper to the Ruhr.


There are many dams in the Bergisches Land. Some of them serve as drinking water reservoirs for the neighboring large cities and also as recreational areas. There is hardly a comparable region in the world with so many reservoirs in such a small area. The following are to be named:

View over the Beyenburger reservoir in Wuppertal

cities and communes

By far the largest city in the Bergisches Land is Wuppertal. Leverkusen, Solingen, Bergisch Gladbach, Remscheid and Velbert follow in terms of population. Other cities and communities in the Bergisches Land cultural region are located in the districts of Mettmann , Oberbergischer Kreis and Rheinisch-Bergischer Kreis .



Bergische cities and communities in NRW historically according to the territorial status of the Duchy of Berg from 1789 (light green) and according to today's regional affiliation (dark green)

The extinct representative of the Homo genus from the Ice Age - the Neanderthal man (Homo neanderthalensis) - was named after its first place of discovery in the Lower Bergisch Neanderthal through which the Düssel flows . In search of hunting prey, he surely moved through the area's tundra at the time. It was replaced by modern humans (Homo sapiens) about 35,000 years ago . For the cultural epochs from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age to the Iron Age , only a few finds are available for the mountainous region, which suggest that the plateaus were not permanently inhabited during this time, but were only used as hunting and grazing land. However, the Rhine valley of the Bergisches Land was settled in the early Neolithic . It is likely that in the vicinity of the few ways that the Rhine led by the densely forested mountains, at the time of the Romans scattered farmsteads Germanic farmers were where people could bring to Roman attacks to safety. However, the permanent settlement of the high elevations of the slate mountains between the Ruhr and Sieg did not begin until relatively late between the late 7th and 9th centuries. Since the rainy and cool climate and the heavy, stony clay soils offered extremely poor conditions for farming , the slate mountains were not an attractive settlement area until then. According to archaeological findings, however, the settlement of the right bank of the Rhine up to the mountain edge between the Ruhr and Sieg estuaries can already be documented for the late Merovingian / early Franconian period from the middle of the 5th century and took place in greater spurts in the second quarter of the 6th century. After the Great Migration in the time of the Franks , the population in the old settlements of the Rhine Valley increased significantly. In connection with clear improvements in agriculture and trade , a slow settlement of the mountainous area began from the Rhine. Because of the climate and the poor soil, undemanding oats were grown almost exclusively. The keeping of animals was limited to a few cattle, sheep and pigs, which were driven into the common property forest Allmende to search for food . The current picture of the Bergisches Land with many pastures is only a development of the 19th century. The final deciding factor, however, was probably Charlemagne , who instructed the nobility of the Rhine and Ruhr Franconians during the Saxon Wars to build a few mansions in the no man's land between the Saxons and the Franconian Empire in order to settle the woodland with Franconians. These manors included u. a. Haan , Elberfeld and Schwelm . Several churches were founded from the 7th century onwards, despite the sparse written sources. Before the turn of the millennium, sacred buildings, mostly wooden hall churches at the location of later stone churches, in Elberfeld, Solingen , Leichlingen , Herkenrath , Gummersbach and Eckenhagen, were proven by excavations, although some of them did not appear in the literature until much later. A document that dates the founding of the church in Sonnborn in the 9th century, on the other hand, dates from the beginning of the 10th century.

middle Ages

After the establishment of the German Empire in the 10th century, the great clearing period began in Bergisch, which lasted until the 16th century. This was associated with many new settlements and the expansion of the manor houses into wooden castles. The lords of Berge Castle in today's Altenberg were able to extend their power to the area that was finally raised to a county by Adolf von Berg in 1101 (hence the name "Bergisches Land"). The upswing of the Wupper area as the center of the ironmongery industry also began at this time , ore mines and kilns were widespread in the 11th and 12th centuries and the mining areas were probably early settlement focuses.

Around 1150 Schloss Burg an der Wupper became the seat of the Counts of Berg . From there the house expanded its power south to Sieg and east to the county of Hückeswagen. While Hückeswagen went peacefully to Haus Berg in 1260, protracted and violent conflicts arose with the (related) Märkern ( Grafschaft Mark ) that smoldered into the 15th century (tellingly, the border between Berg and Mark was almost congruent with the early medieval border between the Rhenish Franks and the Westphalian Saxons ). In the 14th century the country suffered from floods, bad harvests, the plague and the war between Frederick of Austria and Ludwig of Bavaria .

In 1386, Düsseldorf became the residence of the Dukes of Berg who, through a clever marriage policy, united the Duchies of Jülich and Kleve with theirs to form the Triple Duchy of Jülich-Kleve-Berg .

Modern times

Typical landscape of forests and pastures in the Niederbergisches Land

Under William the Rich in particular , the duchy became a center of humanistic science . There was no danger of war at this time. However, discharged mercenaries plundered the duchy. In addition, there were conflicts between Catholics and Protestants until Wilhelm allowed free choice of religion in 1565. The vast majority of the population followed the Reformation and adopted the Reformed or Lutheran faith.

In order to stay out of the looming religious conflict, the duchy pursued a strict policy of neutrality at the beginning of the 17th century. However, since the duke's military power was never enough to prevent the conflicting parties from crossing the territorial borders, this did not prevent the Bergisches Land from becoming a sideline to the Thirty Years War . No major battles took place in Bergisch, but it was a retreat, winter quarters, transit and deployment area for various armies of almost all parties involved in the war, from which the population suffered greatly. In the first 50 years of the 17th century imperial troops, Spaniards, Swedes, Dutch, Hesse and Bavaria fought and plundered. In addition, the dysentery and the plague raged . When the last foreign soldiers left the Bergisches Land several years after the Peace of Westphalia and the end of the Thirty Years' War, parts of it, especially near the thoroughfares such as the Heerweg Cologne-Dortmund , were half depopulated and desolate, while more remote parts were so had almost no consequences of the war. Castles such as Schloss Burg or Beyenburg as well as the city walls of Radevormwald were destroyed in the war.

At the beginning of the 18th century a strong upswing followed, which brought prosperity to the lowest classes. In the Seven Years' War the duchy was neutral. The upswing continued as the first manufacturers clad their half-timbered houses with slate . The typical Bergisch house type was created. At the end of the 18th century, the industrial revolution began here too , when some Bergisch farmers became factory workers. The first paved roads were built until Napoleon put an abrupt end to peace and the free Duchy of Berg. During the 15 years of French occupation, almost 5,000 soldiers from Berg died in the Russian campaign. With the help of the Cossacks , the country was liberated from the French, in order to subsequently become part of the Prussian Rhine Province in 1822 . At this time, more and more people lived and worked in inhumane conditions in the large cities of the Bergisch region . Due to poor hygiene in the working-class neighborhoods, cholera spread and killed many people.

At the end of the 19th century, the Wupper valley became the largest economic center of the empire . With the construction of the first electric cogwheel mountain railway in Barmen , Germany's highest railway bridge near Müngsten , the reconstruction of Burg Castle and the Barmer and Ronsdorf dams , the industrial age was approaching its climax. The Bergisches Land was in full bloom until the outbreak of the First World War . After the war, Elberfeld and Barmen as well as some of the surrounding towns were combined to form the city of Wuppertal . During the Second World War , the large cities in the mountains were a frequent target of the Allied bomber units and were largely destroyed. B. in the air raids on Wuppertal in 1943, the bombings of Solingen in 1940 and 1944 or in the air raid on Remscheid in 1943.

The Bergisches Land received a renewed (compared to the former duchy, however, much smaller) demarcation with the establishment of the nature park of the same name in 1973, which encompassed the rural low mountain range south of the Wupper between the Rhine and Sauerland . In 2006 there was an expansion to the open spaces of the three Bergisch cities.

Sources for the history section.

Political cooperation

Even if the Bergisch cities and districts belong to two different administrative districts, there is a need for cooperation on a regional level. In the post-war period, this led to the formation of the Bergisch Land municipal working group . Almost all of the Bergisch municipalities are members of this (Mülheim an der Ruhr does not participate; Düsseldorf has a permanent seat).

Economy and Infrastructure


High precipitation and a steep gradient to the nearby Rhine and Ruhr offer the Bergisches Land favorable conditions for the use of hydropower . This provided the ironmongery industry with the basis for an early economic development in the Bergisches Land. Many places specialized in the production of a single group of products. So Velbert the center of the lock industry. Mechanical engineering and metal processing determine life in the "tool town" Remscheid and in the former town of Cronenberg , which is now a district of Wuppertal . Around 440 million euros, that is 44 percent of the total annual turnover in the republic, are earned in the cutlery and cutlery industry in the city of Solingen . In contrast, the Wupper valley from Radevormwald downwards from Wupper, Wuppertal itself and the east of Remscheid were more strongly influenced by the textile industry.

The abundance of forests due to good precipitation conditions and many slopes that were less suitable for other types of agriculture ensured a good supply of pit wood. In many places this supported the early development of smaller mines, in which mainly metal ores and slate were broken; later also the expansion of the large coal mine in Westphalia .


The Bergisches Land is a destination for tourists, both for those looking for local recreation and for short vacationers. Since 2005, the Rheinisch-Bergische and Oberbergisch districts have been marketing the tourism region through Naturarena Bergisches Land GmbH. The three Bergisches Großstädte Remscheid, Solingen and Wuppertal, which operate under the tourist brand "Die Bergische Drei", are advertised by Bergisches Land Tourismus Marketing eV. The district of Mettmann markets itself under the name Neanderland. These regional tourism organizations take care of the development and expansion of tourist structures and the marketing of the region as a travel and excursion destination. The main target group are day tourists from the Rhine (Düsseldorf, Cologne, Bonn) and the Ruhr area as well as short vacation guests. Due to the proximity to the trade fair and industrial locations Cologne, Düsseldorf and the Ruhr area, overnight tourism in the Bergisches Land is heavily influenced by business travelers.

Panoramic cycle paths

By changing the use of many railway lines that have become superfluous, an extensive network of cycle paths has been created that is currently 220 km long (as of August 2019). 150 km of these are on low-gradient rail routes. These include:

Culture and sights

Natural sights

Old towns / inner cities

Villa in the Briller district
  • The historic old towns of Bergneustadt , Solingen- Gräfrath , Hückeswagen , Wülfrath , Remscheid- Lennep and Velbert- Langenberg with their half-timbered buildings
  • The Wilhelminian-style architecture of the northern part of the city, especially the Luisenviertel of Wuppertal- Elberfeld , one of the largest Wilhelminian-style villa quarters in Germany, the Briller Quarter with around 250 listed buildings and one of the largest classical churches in the Rhineland, the Catholic basilica of St. Laurentius .
  • The medieval city center of Ratingen with the oldest Gothic hall church in the Rhineland, remains of the city fortifications and the old town houses
  • The historic upper town of Mettmann with the oldest still operating cinema in Germany

Castles and Palaces

Burg Castle in Solingen

Sacred buildings


Bergisches Museum for Mining, Crafts and Trades, main building, Burggraben 17–21
The steam locomotive Waldbröl as a train locomotive of the "Bergischer Löwen" (Wiehltalbahn) under steam on the turntable
Water wheel in the Lindlar open-air museum
Textile Museum Haus Cromford, Ratingen

Technical sights

Wuppertal suspension railway

Culinary specialties

Bergische coffee table

typically Bergisch: The Dröppelminna

The Bergische coffee table, which should not be confused with Bergisch waffles , even if the latter are part of the coffee table, is the epitome of Bergisch cuisine . The coffee table is a very extensive meal that you have to order in advance in most restaurants. In addition to the waffles with cherries, vanilla ice cream and rice pudding, there are various types of bread (especially black bread and mares, the so-called square ), rusks, sausage, semi-hard cheese, honey, quark, butter, burger pretzels and apple cabbage. The coffee is served in the so-called Dröppelminna , a tin can with a tap, which is similar to the Russian-Turkish samovar intended for tea . A particularly rich coffee table can be served with sand cake, bullebäusken and poured rusks, and to finish off with a topped or clear .

Other specialties

Rivkooche in the pan
  • The burger pretzel comes from Solingen-Burg and is also served there with the coffee table.
  • The cast zwieback is baked in only a few bakeries in the Bergisches Land and can also be served with the Bergisch coffee table.
  • The Bergische Pillekuchen is a potato pancake the size of a pancake that is served with applesauce, the counterpart to the Swiss Rösti.
  • Kottenbutter is called black bread covered with sausage and onion rings, which is eaten as a small snack. Earlier, the blacksmith took in Bergisch Land the kottenbutter as a breakfast bread with the work in the as -cottas designated workshops, forging, grinding shops or small foundries where Bergischen steel products (tools, cutlery, etc.) were produced.
  • The Rhenish sauerbraten is also known , if possible as a horse sauerbraten, whose sauce tastes sweet and sour thanks to raisins and beet cabbage.
  • The Panhas : a box-cake-shaped block made of blood, bacon, buckwheat flour, spices and small pieces of meat, similar to a blood sausage. These are cut into slices and fried in fat.
  • Rivkooche ( fritters ) are small, crispy fried potato pancakes, with sugar beet molasses (sugar beet molasses) Apfelkraut be consumed or pure. The noble version can also be topped with crème fraîche and caviar or eaten with salmon.
  • In Lieberhausen , a district of Gummersbach, you can eat the Lieberhausen pancake , in Niederrengse this specialty is also served.
Bergischer Kräher at the former Goldberg manor ( Mettmann )

Award-winning restaurants

There are several restaurants with Michelin stars in the Bergisches Land :

Farm animals

Several old animal breeds are typical of the Bergisches Land or were kept a lot in the past. Several organizations were founded to ensure the preservation of these breeds, such as the Arche Gruppe Bergisch Land eV


The Bergisch chicken breeds ( Bergischer Kräher , Bergischer Schlotterkamm and Krüper ) are among the oldest historical chicken breeds in Germany. They are severely to extremely endangered .

Red height cattle

Red Höhenvieh (young bull)

Robust monochrome red cattle used to be common in many low mountain regions, as well as in the Bergisches Land. In order to protect them from extinction, the lofts have been united in one breed since the 1980s.

Regional fruits

Bergisch sheep nose with characteristic shape

The Bergisches Land knows many typical regional fruits. The varieties specified by the Rhineland Regional Council are:

  • Pears
    • Blood pear
    • Emperor moth pear
    • Martin's pear
  • Sweet cherries
    • Tilgener's red heart cherry
    • White Spanish sweet cherry

Bergisches Heimatlied

The Bergisches Heimatlied , which was performed publicly for the first time in 1892 and characterizes the landscape in the style of the Wilhelmine era, is considered the anthem of the Bergisches Land :

Where the woods still rustle, the nightingale sings
the mountains tower high, the anvil sounds. ...

More Bergisch expressions

  • The small kitchen knife is also known as Klöößchen in Oberbergisch , whereas in Solingen it is called Zöppken . In the Rheinisch-Bergisch cultural area, however, this is referred to as "Flücks-chen". In the Niederberg area, e.g. B. in Velbert, one speaks more of the "Pittermett".
  • Salad (as a collective term for all salads) is called Schloot in Bergisch , whereby the “o” is pronounced openly like the first letter in the first name “Otto”, but closed like Schlot (chimney) in Niederbergisch (Velbert ).
  • The potatoes are called Äädäppel (Erdäpfel), which is then shortened to Äääpel or Ärpel . The potato salad is therefore referred to as the Ärpelschloot .
  • Toothache or headache is called Zängping (where “Zäng” is pronounced quickly) or Kopping . So the pain in general becomes ping . Called pain .

History exploration

The Bergisches Geschichtsverein e. V. is Germany's largest umbrella organization in the field of regional historical research. It unites 15 history associations in the Bergisches Land with a total of around 4,000 members who are connected to their respective home histories. The individual independent associations are managed as departments by the umbrella organization.

See also

Portal: Bergisches Land  - Overview of Wikipedia content on Bergisches Land


  • Gero Karthaus: Oberbergische habitats. The flora and fauna of the most valuable biotopes in the Oberbergischer Kreis. Verlag Gronenberg, Gummersbach 1988, ISBN 3-88265-149-0 .
  • Gero Karthaus: nature on the doorstep. Life with landscape, plants and animals in Oberberg villages then and now. Martina-Galunder Verlag, 1993, ISBN 3-88913-148-4 .
  • Herbert Nicke: Bergisches Fachwerk. A journey through the architecture and history of the half-timbered building on the right bank of the Rhine. Martina Galunder-Verlag, Wiehl 1996, ISBN 3-931251-10-1 .
  • Herbert Nicke: Bergische Mühlen. On the trail of the use of hydropower in the land of a thousand mills between Wupper and Sieg. Martina Galunder-Verlag, Wiehl 1998, ISBN 3-931251-36-5 .
  • Rheinisch-Bergischer Calendar Home year book for the Bergisches Land.
  • Olaf Link: Goethe, the Bergisches Land and its surroundings. Anno-Verlag, Rheinberg 2011, ISBN 978-3-939256-01-4 .
  • Olaf Link: Small Bergische school history (s). Kid Verlag 2012, ISBN 978-3-929386-38-7 .
  • Stefan Gorißen / Horst Sassin / Kurt Wesoly (eds.): History of the Bergisches Land, Volume 1, Until the end of the old Duchy 1806. Scientific Commission of the Bergisches Geschichtsverein (Volume 31), Publishing House for Regional History, Bielefeld 2014, ISBN 978-3 -89534-971-3 .
  • Stefan Gorißen / Horst Sassin / Kurt Wesoly (eds.): History of the Bergisches Land, Volume 2, The 19th and 20th centuries. Scientific Commission of the Bergisches Geschichtsverein (Volume 32), Publishing House for Regional History, Bielefeld 2016, ISBN 978-3-7395-1132-0 .

Web links

Wiktionary: Bergisches Land  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
Commons : Bergisches Land  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wikivoyage: Bergisches Land  - travel guide
Wikisource: Bergisches Land  - Sources and full texts

Individual evidence

  1. Otto Schnell : Berg'sche Vertällsches. Martini & Grüttefien, Elberfeld 1912
  3. a b Stefan Gorißen, Horst Sassin and Kurt Wesoly (eds.): History of the Bergisches Land , Volume 1: Until the end of the old duchy 1806 ; Bergische Forschungen 31, 2014 ISBN 978-3-89534-971-3 , p. 25
  4. "The Bergisches Land cultural region includes the cities of Wuppertal , Remscheid, Solingen and the districts of Mettmann, Oberberg and Rhein-Berg." Regional cultural policy: Bergisches Land and Rheinschiene cultural region ,, accessed on June 15, 2020
  5. ^ "The Mettmann district belongs to the Bergisches Land cultural region, along with the cities of Wuppertal, Remscheid and Solingen, as well as the Rheinisch-Bergisch and Oberbergischer districts." Regional cultural policy Bergisches Land ,, accessed on June 15, 2020
  6. Report on the Wülfrather Kalkwerke on from August 22, 2014 , accessed on January 14, 2018
  7. Source Directory "history" of the homepage "Scharpenacker Wuppertal Heritage streams", see
  8. Bergisches Land natural arena
  9. The Bergische Drei - Remscheid Solingen Wuppertal tourism region
  10. Neanderland
  11. Information about cycle paths , accessed on August 5, 2019
  12. Germany's oldest cinema - the Weltspiegel Kinocenter in Mettmann. Retrieved April 28, 2020 .
  13. Wayback Machine. May 23, 2015, archived from the original on May 23, 2015 ; accessed on September 10, 2019 .
  14. Animals of the Arche Group Bergisch Land e. V. ( Memento from May 9, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) on (archived on, accessed on August 5, 2019
  15. Long-displaced cattle breeds brought back to the Bergisches Land, article in the Remscheider Generalanzeiger from December 28, 2014 on, accessed on August 5, 2019
  16. List of regional fruit varieties In: , accessed on April 15, 2017.
  17. ^ Bergischer Geschichtsverein e. V., Departments Accessed January 16, 2018

Coordinates: 51 ° 3 '  N , 7 ° 18'  E