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Coordinates: 50°33′36″N 06°15′23″E / 50.56000°N 6.25639°E / 50.56000; 6.25639
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Slate roofs of Monschau town centre and castle
Slate roofs of Monschau town centre and castle
Coat of arms of Monschau
Location of Monschau within Aachen district
BelgiumNetherlandsDüren (district)Euskirchen (district)Heinsberg (district)AachenAlsdorfBaesweilerEschweilerHerzogenrathMonschauRoetgenSimmerathStolberg (Rhineland)Würselen
Monschau is located in Germany
Monschau is located in North Rhine-Westphalia
Coordinates: 50°33′36″N 06°15′23″E / 50.56000°N 6.25639°E / 50.56000; 6.25639
StateNorth Rhine-Westphalia
Admin. regionKöln
 • Mayor (2022–27) Dr. Carmen Krämer[1] (Ind.)
 • Total94.62 km2 (36.53 sq mi)
420 m (1,380 ft)
 • Total11,864
 • Density130/km2 (320/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
Postal codes
Dialling codes02472
Vehicle registrationAC, MON

Monschau (German pronunciation: [ˈmɔnʃaʊ̯] ; French: Montjoie, French pronunciation: [mɔ̃ʒwa]; Walloon: Mondjoye) is a small resort town in the Eifel region of western Germany, located in the Aachen district of North Rhine-Westphalia.


The town is located in the hills of the North Eifel, within the Hohes Venn – Eifel Nature Park in the narrow valley of the Rur river. The historic town center has many preserved half-timbered houses and narrow streets have remained nearly unchanged for 300 years, making the town a popular tourist attraction nowadays. Historically, the main industry of the town was cloth-mills.


On the heights above the city is Monschau castle, which dates back to the 13th century — the first mention of Monschau was made in 1198. Beginning in 1433, the castle was used as a seat of the dukes of Jülich. In 1543, Emperor Charles V besieged it as part of the Guelders Wars, captured it and plundered the town. However, the castle stayed with Jülich until 1609, when it became part of Palatinate-Neuburg.

In 1795, the French captured the area and, under the name Montjoie, made it the capital of a canton of the Roer département. After the area became part of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815, Monschau became the district capital of the Kreis Montjoie.

During World War I, some people argued that Monschau (or "Montjoie" as it was then still called) should be annexed to Belgium since they believed it historically to be a Walloon area that had been Germanized by the Prussians.[3]

In 1918, William II, German Emperor, changed the name to Monschau. In 1972, the town was enlarged with the previously independent municipalities of Höfen, Imgenbroich, Kalterherberg, Konzen, Mützenich and Rohren. Mützenich, to the west of the town center, is an exclave of German territory surrounded by Belgium. It is separated from Germany by the Vennbahn railway line, which was assigned to Belgium by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919.

During World War II the town of Monschau, sitting on a vital road network, was a point of great tactical importance in the opening phase of the Battle of the Bulge in December 1944 as the northernmost point of the battlefront.[4]


Monschau, view at the Markt


Monschau, which is allowed to call itself health resort Luftkurort since 1996, attracts many visitors with its picturesque views especially in the warm months. Set in the medieval town facility that is traversed by the river Rur, it is dominated by slate paneled and half-timbered houses with cafes, restaurants, craft and souvenir shops. Parking places are placed around the city center.

Part of driving and physical chase scenes in the 2016 film: "Collide" were filmed in and around the centre of Monschau.



Known far beyond the environment is the Monschau Christmas market, which is visited every year by tens of thousands of guests.

  • The Arts and Culture Centre Monschau (KUK) shows changing art exhibitions [5]


  • Red House, Foundation-Scheibler Museum: The museums shows the civil living culture between the 18th and 19th centuries. 1768 the double house was completed. Johann Heinrich Scheibler (1705-1765), the owner had brought the Monschau cloth industry to full success. The highlight of the equipment is the wooden staircase in the house.
  • Caffee roasting Wilhelm Maassen, founded in 1862. There is roasted coffee in old family tradition on an old PROBAT drum roaster. You can watch the roasting.
  • Brewery Museum Felsenkeller, 150 years of brewing in the historical Monschau brewery, collection of old brewery equipment.
  • Senfmühle Monschau, built in 1882.
  • Erlebnismuseum Lernort natur: Since 2014, Museum of the stuffed animals [6]


Monschau, monumental house: das Rote Haus

Monschau has over 330 listed buildings, so that only a selection can be called.

  • Monschau Castle
  • The Protestant Stadtkirche Monschau was built from 1787 to 1789 by Wilhelm Hellwig as a rectangular quarry stone and completed in 1810.[7]
  • The Red House of the cloth manufacturers family Scheibler is accessible as a museum today. It is a duplex and was completed in 1768 by Johann Heinrich Scheibler (1705-1765),
  • House Troistorff was built in 1783 for the couple Troistorff as a representative town house. It has long been attributed to the Aachen architect Jakob Couven, but this is unlikely.[8]
  • St. Mariä Geburt (Monschau) in the style of peasant Baroque, built from 1649 to 1650, an erected in crude rubble masonry Saalbau, with a slightly curved gable roof. Instead of a tower, the church has a ridge turret with a pointed roof. The church is considered as the most beautiful building in the peasant Baroque in the northern Eifel [9]

Supraregional sport[edit]

At two meetings in the spring meet canoeists for about 50 years in Monschau international events, and a whitewater races. Nationally known is the Monschau Marathon more than 760 meters of altitude, which takes place in August.



Monschau is connected by various regional bus routes of Regionalverkehr Euregio Maas-Rhein inter alia to Simmerath, Aachen and Eupen (Belgium). It is the collective tarif of the Aachener Verkehrsverbund. All lines meet at the central station Imgenbroich Bushof. Since March 2016 runs in Monschau an additional responsive demand transport system of the Aachener Straßenbahn und Energieversorgung under the name NetLiner.

The former important Vennbahn, which was used until 2001 as a Heritage railway, had stations in Monschau, Konzen and Kaltenherberg, now it is closed. It was remodeled 2010 for the establishment of the Vennbahn (bike path). Through the village runs the Bundesstraße 258 from north to south.

Biking trails[edit]

Through the town lead the cycle paths:

Notable residents[edit]


  • Wendt, Christoph: Monschau – Idylle zwischen Fels und Fachwerk. Meyer und Meyer, Aachen 1995, ISBN 3-89124-223-9.
  • Pippke, Walter, Pallhuber, Ida: Die Eifel. 2. Auflage. Köln 1984 (DuMont Kunst-Reiseführer), S. 42, Farbtafel 13, Abb. 27.



  1. ^ Bekanntmachung des Ergebnisses der Stichwahl des/der Bürgermeisters/in der Stadt Monschau am 29.05.2022, Stadt Monschau, accessed 14 June 2022.
  2. ^ "Bevölkerung der Gemeinden Nordrhein-Westfalens am 31. Dezember 2022 – Fortschreibung des Bevölkerungsstandes auf Basis des Zensus vom 9. Mai 2011" (in German). Landesbetrieb Information und Technik NRW. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
  3. ^ Finot, Jean. New York Times, May 30th, 1915
  5. ^ [1] Archived 2012-11-25 at the Wayback Machine Kulturprogramm des KUK.
  6. ^ "Erlebnismuseum Lernort Natur". Archived from the original on 2019-09-09. Retrieved 2016-04-30.
  7. ^ Wera Groß: Protestantische Kirchenneubauten des 16. bis 18. Jahrhunderts am Niederrhein und im Bergischen Land; Band 2: S. 295-300.
  8. ^ Sandra Wertz (2009). "Das Haus Troistorff in Monschau". Rheinische Industriekultur (in German). Verein Rheinische Industriekultur e.V. Retrieved 2012-12-03.
  9. ^ Ursula Legge-Suwelack und Wolfgang Zahn: Alte Pfarrkirche und ehemaliges Aukloster mit Aukirche in Monschau.

External links[edit]