Complicated borders

Friday, 12th December 2008 by

Here's a fairly long train travelling through an icy Moldova, eastern Europe. A train is hardly an uncommon sight on Google Earth - but this particular train will travel from one side of Moldova all the way to the other in an incredible two minutes flat.

The train has just left neighbouring Romania and is passing through Moldova on its way to Ukraine... but as you may have guessed by now, this train passes through Moldova at the exact point where the three countries meet. If the train had been just a little longer, it could have actually straddled all three countries at the same time!

Elsewhere in Europe, we find the Belgian town of Baarle-Hertog - which is in the Netherlands.

Baarle-Hertog is made up of twenty separate Belgian exclaves in the Netherlands, and three other pieces on the Dutch-Belgian border. Even more confusingly, there are also seven Dutch exclaves within the Belgian exclaves!

The Dutch parts of the town are called Baarle-Nassau, and the border is so complicated that there are some houses that are divided between the two countries. Allegedly there was once a Dutch law which required restaurants to close earlier than those in Belgium, which for some restaurants simply meant that the clients had to move tables to the Belgian side.

Read more about Moldova, Baarle-Hertog and Baarle-Nassau at Wikipedia. BLDG blog also has an excellent article about Baarle-Hertog.

Thanks to Eric Hagerman and Nev Stokes.