Best foot forward in Flemish Brabant

12 walks to get to know the region

Moving to a new country is always exciting. Yes, there’s a lot of admin and real-life things to do, but at the end of the day, you have a new area to explore, things to see and places to go. But where do you start?

If you’re one of the many expats in Brussels, or contemplating being one of them soon, then maybe we can help! Well, more accurately the team from Tourism Flemish Brabant.

Let’s start with setting the scene a little better, Flemish Brabant is the province which surrounds Brussels, covering an area of 2,118 km2. Created in 1995, the province includes 65 municipalities and has a population of well over a million people.

So, if you’re like many expats in Belgium and have chosen Brussels as your new home, then Flemish Brabant is right on your doorstep and waiting to be explored.

'This year, the team at Tourism Flemish Brabant, have created a limited edition English language guide. Outlining 12 walks, suitable for new and experienced walksers, listed by season.'

Every year, in early Spring, the team at Tourism Flemish Brabant create a Dutch language guide to exploring the province on foot. However, this year, they’ve also created a limited edition, English language guide.

The guide outlines 12 walks, suitable for new and experienced walkers, listed by the season when they’re best visited. You’ll also found details of the route markers you need to follow, plus recommendations of places to visit and eat around the walks.

And the best bit? The guide is free, all you have to do is pay the postage!

Not sure if you need a FREE walking guide in your life? Well, here are our four favourite walks from the guide. If you want the other eight, you’ll need to pick up your own copy.

Big Oak Walk – Bierbeek

Located around 30 minutes east of Brussels, Bierbeek is a small town nestled in the countryside.

The walk covers 12.6km through woodland, including over 1,000 majestic oak trees. This is a lovely area to lose yourself in nature and get away from the hustle of the city.

And when you’re done, what to do? Well, the guide gives a strong recommendation of a bistro where you can “enjoy a local beer and something scrumptious”, which is always great in our book!

Halewijn Walk – Zoutleeuw

An hour’s drive outside of Brussels sits the city of Zoutleeuw. With a population of just under 8,500 people, Zoutleeuw is home to the historical St. Leonard’s Church which is a UNESCO world heritage site.

The Halewijn walk covers 11.4km and will take you by St. Leonard’s, if you’d like to visit. Before that, you’ll be treated to trip through Het Vinne Provincial Domain, a nature reserve which includes the largest natural lake in Flanders.

Het Vinne also includes a watch tower to see the whole lake, a playground for the kids and an art trail with free art book. If you want to see the lake and learn more about it, there’s a free, 90-minute tour available.

Kesterbeek Walk – Beersel

Beersel is 30 minutes’ drive south of Brussels, though you can get there by train in just 18 minutes.

At only 8km, this walk does include some height, so get ready to elevate your heart rate. Running through the Zenne River’s valley, this is a fantastic way to enjoy the local countryside and to work up a thirst for a trip to the local brewery when you’re done.

Whilst you’re in Beersel, we’d recommend you take a trip to Beersel Castle. Built in 1300, it has a rich history and is considered one of Belgium best preserved castles.

Warande Walk – Tervuren

17.5km to the east of Brussels lies the historic town of Tervuren. A treasure trove of historical and cultural sites, the village of Tervuren is worth a visit on its own.

The Warande walk encompasses the St Hubert Chapel, Het Spaans Huis restaurant, and the Royal Museum for Central Africa. At only 5.8km long, you get a lot of sights for a short distance.

The Royal Museum for Central Africa holds a vast collection of specimens from central Africa, including over 10,000,000 specimens in the Department of Zoology, 200,000 rock samples in the Department of Geology and over 120,000 objects in the Department of Cultural Anthropology.

Finally, if Tervuren sounds familiar, that might mean you’re a dog lover. One of the four distinct varieties of Belgian Shepherd takes its name from this region.

Our thanks to the team at Tourism Flemish Brabant for letting us have a sneak peek at the latest, limited-edition English language walking guide. If you’d like a copy of your own, it is available now and you can pick it up here, for the price of the postage.

 

 

 

Share this: Facebooktwitterlinkedinmail