Hanover"s Eilenriede forest is virtually a "forest city" and its true "green lung". It covers an area of 650 hectares in the middle of the city, which makes it unique in the whole of Europe. Even the famous Hyde Park in London and the Bois de Boulogne in Paris cannot compete. Accordingly, the citizens of Hanover are very proud of "their" Eilenriede. The privilege to use and cultivate the Eilenriede as their possession, granted in 1371 by the dukes Wenzeslaus and Albrecht of Sachsen, is the foundation of its development. The forest stretches across the city, almost into the city center. It takes its name from the alder trees (German: Erlen or Ellern), which used to grow on its moist, marshy soil. The earlier "Ellernried" eventually became "Eilenriede". Nowadays, oak and beech trees are the most common. Pine, larch, alder, birch trees and other species also grow here in large numbers. The north and inner Eile nriede stretches between Kleefeld and List, while the south Eilenriede goes through Kirchrode as far as Waldheim.
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