The German national railway company, the Deutsche Bahn, has awarded its “Tourism for all” competition prize to the Eifel National Park. The “Wilder Weg”, or “wild path”, a barrier-free nature experience trail, was awarded the prize at a ceremony on 5 December. The jury, consisting of tourism experts, people with disabilities and representatives of the Deutsche Bahn, had particular praise for the “continuous, comprehensive and multi-faceted work towards barrier-free access for over twelve years”.
The competition was open to cities and regions which had already taken measures to enable pioneering barrier-free travel. The second and third prizes were awarded to the “Ruppiner Seenland” area with its “Water holidays for all” and the “Dachauer Land” region. The three prizewinners received 5,000, 3,000 and 2,000 euros in prize money.
Ten interactive stations along the trail, which is around 1.5 kilometres long, offer people with and without a disability an insight into the forest, which in this protected area has developed into a jungle-like wilderness. Around 50,000 of the 870,000 visitors to the National Park in total walk the nature discovery trail every year. Of these, 15 percent are people with a disability.