The plan for today was to drive to a national park in France for a day of walking and wild camping. However the weather was unseasonably cold and very wet. We decided to scrap that plan. The next city was Strasbourg so we set the Sat-Nav and set off. As we were leaving Luxembourg we saw a sign for Schengen and decided to have a quick stop as there has been a lot of discussion around the Schengen Area since the Brexit vote.
Schengen is a small town on the border of Luxembourg, France and Germany. It was chosen as the place for the signing of the Schengen Agreement on 14 June 1985 due to this unique location.
The Schengen Area is an area comprising 26 European states that have officially abolished all passport and all other types of border control at their mutual borders. The area mostly functions as a single jurisdiction for international travel purposes, with a common visa policy.
Schengen is also home to the European Museum Schengen. This free and fairly small exhibition which was very well put together and explained the Schengen Area and the history very well. There were also some sculptures and monuments outside and overall it was very well done for what is essentially a museum about one legal document!
After this interesting stop we headed for another small village, Graufthal, to see Maison des Rochers which a row of houses set into caves in red sandstone cliffs. These houses were occupied up until 1958 when the last occupant died. They are now maintained by a local association.
The houses are very small with low ceilings, no electricity or running water. Legend has it they were built in the rocks as the locals got fed up of their houses being destroyed by floods and or invading armies.