Saar (river)

The Saar (/sɑːr/, also US: /zɑːr/, German: [zaːɐ̯] (listen); French: Sarre [saʁ]) is a river in northeastern France and western Germany, and a right tributary of the Moselle. It rises in the Vosges mountains on the border of Alsace and Lorraine and flows northwards into the Moselle near Trier. It has two headstreams (the Sarre Rouge and Sarre Blanche, which join in Lorquin), that both start near Mont Donon, the highest peak of the northern Vosges. After 246 kilometres (153 mi) (129 kilometres in France and on the French-German border,[1] and 117 kilometres in Germany) the Saar flows into the Moselle at Konz (Rhineland-Palatinate) between Trier and the Luxembourg border. It has a catchment area of 7,431 square kilometres (2,869 sq mi).

Course of the saar (1703)
Saar loop at Mettlach
CountriesFrance and Germany
Physical characteristics
SourceSarre Blanche
  locationVosges mountains, Bas-Rhin
  coordinates48°31′37″N 7°09′45″E
  elevation±800 m (2,600 ft)
2nd sourceSarre Rouge
  locationVosges mountains, Moselle
  coordinates48°32′05″N 7°10′05″E
  elevation±670 m (2,200 ft)
49°42′5″N 6°34′11″E
Length246 km (153 mi)
Basin size7,431 km2 (2,869 sq mi)
  average75 m3/s (2,600 cu ft/s)
Basin features
ProgressionMoselleRhineNorth Sea
Bridge over the Saar at Saarbrücken

The Saar flows through the following departments of France, states of Germany and towns:

Confluence of the Saar and Moselle in Konz

On the banks of the Saar is the UNESCO-World Heritage Site Völklinger Hütte. At Mettlach the Saar passes the well-known Saar loop. The lower Saar in Rhineland-Palatinate is a winegrowing region of some importance, producing mostly Riesling. Until the early 20th century, much more wine was grown on the banks of the Saar, reaching much further up from the mouth of the river, up to Saarbrücken. Only in the early 21st century have some enterprising farmers from the Saarland area started experimenting with winegrowing again.

The name Saar stems from the Celtic word sara (streaming water), and the Roman name of the river, saravus.