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Wuppertal lies in North Rhine Westphalia, at the heart of the impressive natural landscape of Bergische Land. This was designated a quality nature park in 2008 and is truly impressive due to its sheer diversity: Moorland, waterways and forestland all offer space for sporting and leisure pursuits. The area is one of the oldest industrial regions in Europe in which waterpower was used. As such the landscape throughout the region features the products of its industrial culture. The Wuppertalsperre reservoir is an impressive example of this. An architectural feature of the region are the traditional houses clad wholly or partially with slate. Wuppertal runs alongside the Wupper river and is known for the suspension railway, which runs as a form of public transport through and out of the Wupper valley. The city is a centre for education and culture in the Bergische Land region. The quality of life in Wuppertal is enhanced by its direct proximity to nature and the numerous green relaxation areas within the city. These include the botanical gardens, the zoo, the promenade path along the Wupper and the municipal parks. In terms of transport links Wuppertal benefits from its central situation between the Ruhr district and the Rhine metropolises of Dusseldorf and Cologne. As a commercial location the city is the home of companies from a very wide range of industries.