Heritage and environment

En complément

Pays de Bitche is mainly wooded. It makes up part of the Vosges du Nord Natural Regional Park, a territory recognised by UNESCO (the Vosges du Nord and Pfalzerwald Border Biosphere Reserve).

Certain natural areas around Pays de Bitche are protected because of their heritage but also for their fragility.

There are a thousand and one secrets to discover around Hanau Lake about the wildlife and more in particular, the peat bogs. The visitor can follow the nature trail (1km) and discover the illustrated boards and understand the long process of peat formation as well as observing the rare plants that live in these areas such as the Drosera (sundew), a carnivorous plant.

These miles of preserved countryside provide an ideal area for outdoor activities: long sandy paths for walking and cycle tracks and itineraries for all the family.

Fishing and swimming enthusiasts and pastoral strollers will enjoy the many small lakes around Pays de Bitche.

The forest is spotted with red sandstone rocks providing shelter for rare species of birds such as the prestigious Peregrine Falcon and the majestic Eagle Owl.

At Bitche, the storks can be observed in different areas around the town and in springtime they can be seen in their nests accompanied by their young that they jealously protect. It is said that a stork brings good luck to the house where it builds its nest.

In the valleys, Highland cattle can be seen. Having a reputation of being real ecological lawnmowers, they were introduced here to tidy up the abandoned areas. These rustic cattle are originally from the highlands of Scotland and are now among the last herds in Europe.

Highland cattle  Waldeck Hanau forest