A route along which you can hear a symphony of bird songs and bicycle bells! Yes, but most of all a route along which you will hear no car horns, nor inhale their unpleasant exhaust fumes.
Sharing the pathways...
They may not always see eye to eye, but walkers and cyclists have much in common: their activity is human-powered and admirably 'green', and they share an interest in the conversion of disused railway tracks and canal towpaths into flat, smoothly-paved new routes for their use.
This has been done extensively in Belgium: 1,200km of track, byway and towpath has been upgraded by the authorities – equivalent to the distance between London and Inverness – in a network known locally as RAVeL.
The gradient is never more than six per cent, and the tracks are open to all forms of non-motorised travellers, including cyclists, horse-riders, hikers and even roller-bladers.
There are 5 options - for example :
RAVeL 1 will take you from Namur to Visé (towards the Dutch border)
RAVeL 2 will take you through varied landscapes from Mariembourg (steam railway museum) to Hoegaarden (the home of white beer) passing through Dinant and Namur.
RAVeL 4 will take you through the province of Hainaut with Beloeil (a château worth visiting), Ath (carnival) and along the banks of the River Dendre to Lessines and its astonishing “Hopital Notre-Dame à la Rose”
To obtain the Ravel guides, please get in touch with our office.