The Britzgyberg is a three hundred metre high limestone hill on the edge of the Illtal valley near Illfurth in the Haut-Rhin département in the Région Grand Est. It is home to interesting dry grasslands with flora and fauna typical of the Mediterranean, as well as a mixed deciduous forest where one can readily encounter middle-spotted woodpeckers as well as several, widely ramified badger burrows. After a short ascent, one quickly comes across a German military cemetery from the First World War, as well as the remains of a prehistoric (Celtic) fortified settlement in the form of an oppidum. Excavations from the immediate vicinity show that a Hallstatt settlement existed here, with remains of Attic black-figure vessels even suggesting a Celtic noble seat.
The Ill Valley is the northern section of the so-called Burgundian Gate, which serves the immigration of animal and plant species from the Rhone Valley and the Mediterranean region. For this reason, there is a particularly diverse flora and fauna to be found here.
The Britzgyberg circular trail is marked with a blue ring sign and is about 4 km long. The walk begins east of Illfurth, near the German military cemetery, and leads to a fireplace behind the cemetery's main monument, orchid sites, an imposing badger burrow, the 16th-century Chapelle St. Brice and the excavations of the Celtic oppidum. The route is generally classified as moderate and can mostly be completed in about an hour. The trails are well signposted.
A barbecue area/fireplace behind the main monument of the cemetery is available for visitors. There are also a few shops and two restaurants in Illfurth.
Other greenbelt sites in the vicinity
Barbecue / fireplace, Culture, Excursion with animals, Excursion with children, Hike (good footwear), Sport
Barbecue / fireplace, Food must be brought along, Picnic area
Birds, Cultural landscape / meadows, Forest, Insects, Reptiles, Specific fauna
Castle / Ruins, Historical site, Tour
Families, Groups (< 10 persons), Groups (> 10 persons), Hikers, Pets, School classes, Sportspeople
As there is only a train connection to Illfurth about every two hours, it is recommended to arrive by car. Parking is available at the end of the tarred road. This is also the start of the Britzgyberg trail.
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