Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site: Future starts with a vision

Join our guided tour to the Zollverein Coal Mine Industrial Complex in Essen, former dirt factory, now World Heritage Site of the UNESCO! You want to get an impression of the industrial epoch in Germany? You want to see the heart of the so-called Ruhrpott and meet the miners? The last miners descended the shaft in 1986 for a last shift, while the coking plant was decommissioned in 1993. Now, few of the miners work as tour guides. The vision „Preservation through conversion“ creatively turned the industrial complexes with shafts and the coking plant into a public area combining history, culture, entertainment, education and gastronomy.

The industrial complexes are huge and impressive! You will dive into the process of coal washing and get to know the production and use of coke. You will take a view from the roof of the coking plant, look into a coking oven and touch history!  

Over more than ten years, artists, cultural workers and visionaries evolved a “Zollverein Cultural Landscape” bundled by the Zollverein Foundation. The climaxes of this development were the listing as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001 and being the landmark of the European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010. The Zollverein World Heritage Site is a symbol for the change of a whole region, still developing and showing options how industry complexes of environmentally un-friendly technologies could be heading into the future.

The tour will include lunch - traditional German curried sausage “Currywurst” and vegetarian options.

You can find more impressions here: https://www.zollverein.de/zollverein-unesco-world-heritage-site/

Start: Sunday, 10 September 2023, 8 a.m.
Fee: 90 € 

Aerial view of the coking plant with coke oven battery

The Zollverein coking plant was built from 1957 to 1961 according to the plans of architect Fritz Schupp. Following expansion work, it was the largest central coking plant in Europe from 1973. Every day, up to 1,000 coke plants were in operation around the clock, producing up to 8,600 tons of coke per day. In 1993, the coke plant was shut down. In 2000, the coking plant was added to the city of Essen's list of monuments and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. In 2010, the coking plant became the property of the Zollverein Foundation. The "black side" of the coking plant, i.e. the coke production area, can be visited on a guided tour along the ZOLLVEREIN® monument trail. 600 meter long coke oven batteries with 304 narrow coke ovens characterize the face of the so-called "black side" of the coke plant. Visitors can discover the oven ceiling, the interior of the coke ovens, the quenching train hall and other areas on a guided tour of the ZOLLVEREIN® monument.

Area A [Shaft XII], winding tower [A1]

The 55-meter-high double trestle winding tower [A1] is the landmark of the Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city of Essen and the entire Ruhr region.