... you are in the Ruhr area. A region where everything has changed after the closure of the mines and blast furnaces. The Ruhr area has been virtually industrial-free since 2008. Well: compared to the time before when the air was often so polluted that you had to chew it before breathing it in.
The collapse of heavy industry has led to a significant percentage of unemployed people and a beautiful, park-like landscape.
And many of those industrial delights at blast furnaces and dinghies have now been declared a historical heritage and have been upgraded to a kind of (open air) museums.
No matter how crowded the Ruhr area is, there are whole areas where you as a visitor imagine yourself in a rural environment.
And from the time when there were still many commercial travelers, a dense network of affordable hotels has remained. They are often strategically located at road junctions. Those hotel / restaurants are often highly authentic. But they are usually clean, the beds are good and the meals are tasty and affordable. And the showers at Hotel Einhaus Jägerhof in Dorsten deserve five stars.
Classic enthusiasts are more than welcome - also in a club context. And that is not the case for us at least with the short approach route. Being in a completely different world from 100 kilometers after Arnhem, that seems like optimal marketing, but it is a coincidence.
Because in terms of marketing, it apparently does not want it to be that way Ruhr area 2.0 is fantastic, rather than horrible.
Apart from the fact that the secondary roads are created for classics, it is full of cultural activities, hiking trails, canoeing options and golf courses. And Beer gardens. But we as drivers - despite the heavenly lightness of the local beers - have to be careful with that. A portion of currywurst as a base for the beer gives a chance of heartburn and an unexpected chlestrol peak ... you have been warned. But hey: occasional sin must be possible. The catering offer is impressive, from gutbürgerlichen Küche, to all kinds of Turkish and Greek eateries.
The 'Halden', the enormous mountains of mine rubble, are the literal highlights in the region. If you have visited two a day, then you can eat with unlimited impunity in the evening ...
So you may be able to surprise yourself, your partner and your classic with a long weekend in Ruhrgebiet. And we know for sure that it will not end with that one time.
Oh yes: We noticed it in Bottrop, but it will no doubt also be the case in other places that there is a restriction policy for classics. Apparently that can be bought off by purchasing a window sticker. The editorial classic received a note under the windscreen wiper that such a sticker was missing. There is a fine on it. Or so. We still have to check that out.
We are still reporting on this.