Belgium is home to bike paths aplenty, but have you meandered through a surreal Belgian cycling path surrounded completely by water? More than just your average biking path, when cycling through this trail in Bokrijk, Belgium, you’ll be moved to a world of peace and serenity.
Keep reading to uncover more about Cycle through Water and why you should consider Belgium for your next European getaway!
Why Cycle Through Water?
Belgium’s Limberg province boasts 1,240 miles of biking trails that are known for bringing tourists to its communities. Cycle through Water was created in order to add an extra element to Limburg’s cycling appeal and to boost the area’s cycling tourism. It’s safe to say that bicycle tourism has definitely been boosted as a result of the unique cycling path; according to Time’s Greatest Places of 2018, the path has received over 500,000 bikers since its opening in 2016. According to World Landscape Architect, on average, the path sees 800 cyclists per day.
Igor Philtjens, the project developer of the Toerisme Limburg, told Time, “We do not want to create more miles, we want to create better miles.”
The Cycle through Water project hasn’t just been good for tourism. The addition of the path has helped to improve Bokrijk water quality and increased the community’s viable amphibian habitat.
If you’re still wondering if you should put this bike trail on your bucket list, consider this entry from Time’s Greatest Places of 2018: “Walking on water may elude most of us, but this bike trail in northern Belgium offers an experience that’s almost as divine.”
The path is located at junction 91 and 92 and allows you to view the Open-Air Museum as you pass by. The path is nearly 10 feet wide and just over a tenth of a mile long and runs through the De Wijers pond area. As you cycle through the relaxing path at one point you’ll be surrounded by water at eye level on both sides which will make for an ethereal experience.
Another perk to the path is that the project helped to increase pond space.
According to World Landscape Architect, “This gives the visitor a 360-degree open view of the Bokrijk museum part East and West Flanders. This also improves the interaction between the ponds and the open-air museum. After a thorough restoration, new viewpoints were installed in the 17th-century pigeon tower and an old farm.”
Visitors can choose to relax at these viewpoints and enjoy the outdoor environment surrounding them while learning about Bokrijk and the De Wijers.
How To Cycle
You don’t need much to hit the trails, except a bike of course! The Bokrijk website says that bikers are welcome to bring their own bikes, but renting a bike is also possible. Bike rentals are 10 euros which translates to just over $11 USD. Know when you’re going? Reserve a bike here.
Also, for a look ahead at the trail, there’s an interactive online map that gives cyclists a sense of what they may see and where the trail leads.
While you’re in Belgium, there are plenty of sights to see and things to do. Read “Castles & Canals: 9 Things To Do In Belgium” for a list of options to add to your list. Also, Bokrijk is only a little over an hour away from Brussels, meaning it could be your home base. Know how to spend a day in Brussels, Belgium, so you can start planning ahead!