When the generators are silent
Chamber music electrifies at the Heimbach power plant
From outside, there is something sacral about Heimbach hydroelectric power plant. The long hall is like the nave of a church, the two towers crowning it are visible from afar. Its appearance makes it Germany’s most beautiful Jugendstil power plant. Full of expectation, visitors stream into the interior and take their seats between large turbines. Historical instruments shine in the gallery, lamps from the Art Deco period light up the walls. “Tensions” is the motto of the chamber music festival that electrifies the public here in Eifel every year. Is electricity measurable when the musicians strike up? One thing is for sure: In every corner of the large machine hall, the audience listens excitedly as music by Dvořák, Mendelssohn, Bartók or Debussy is played and the generators are unusually silent.
In the Rureifel region
If no music is playing in the power plant, nature in and around Heimbach provides a melodic soundtrack with rustling leaves, chirping birds, and splashing water. The hydropower plant acquires its water from the Urfttal reservoir, the Eifel’s oldest reservoir. There are many ways to get there, including walking the Eifelsteig and the Wasserlandroute or cycling the track along the banks of the Rur. Once there, the visitor can enjoy impressive panorama views of the Urftsee and Obersee lakes. The reservoir is located in the middle of the Nationalpark Eifel, a very special piece of nature that offers a habitat for plants and animals, and a place where people can relax.