Exploring cultures and communities – the slow way

So where does hidden europe actually come from? From a garret in Reykjaví­k perhaps? Or a basement in Kiev? No, hidden europe is produced in the very middle of Europe just a stone's throw from the erstwhile border between West Berlin and the former German Democratic Republic (the DDR). We are more or less at the junction of two of Europe's truly great highways, the E30 and the E55. Well, not actually right at the junction but merely a few kilometres away.

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We are not sure that any living soul has ever driven either the E30 or the E55 from end to end, but if they have, we would certainly like to hear from them. The E30 must be among the longest highways in the world, and the E55 is no trifling byway either. Indeed it ranks as one of Europe's prime north - south routes. Both highways converge from different directions near Berlin, briefly share a few kilometres of the city's southern ring, then go their separate ways again.

A half hour sitting by the side of that cardinal artery is enough to spot the licence plates of a dozen or more European countries: whether it be Finland or Moldova, Belarus or Bulgaria, the shared stretch of the E30 and the E55 provides fertile ground for those of more nerdish inclinations. But somehow, number plates aside, these two roads between them seem to sum up what hidden europe is all about.

Where does the E30 actually go?

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About the authors

hidden europe

and Susanne Kries manage hidden europe, a Berlin-based editorial bureau that supplies text and images to media across Europe. Together they edit hidden europe magazine. Nicky and Susanne are dedicated slow travellers. They delight in discovering the exotic in the everyday.

This article was published in hidden europe 1.