Belgian sports. There is not much to talk about Belgian sports. Except if you talk about very specific sports like cycling or (obscure sports) . There I have to say Belgians are doing good.
But this is not the purpose of this blog post. I want to share here, the Belgian love of … organized walking. Indeed. Organized long distance walking. And this being Belgium we talk about walking in … French and walking in … Flemish. On the French side, the walking is organized by ADEPS. On the Flemish side it is under Grote Routepaden, which means something like long walking paths. I think this is where the differences stop. Of course one covers the south and the other the north walking paths but in their offer and structure they are pretty similar.
The walks cover beautiful regions and as always, this being Belgium, you can combine walking with the occasional … beer stop. Some of the walks can be done on an individual basis and they usually range from 3km to 10km. However I prefer joining the organized walks. They usually cost a bit of money (usually up to 10e per person) and they start from a given meeting point. The advantage of the organized walks is that there is a guide who not only knows the route but can also share fun and interesting facts about the walk. You also get to meet like minded people who like a bit of walk and if you are lucky a bit of fun. So far every walk I have been on was a great occasion to not only get those muscles moving but also meet fun people, practice the local language, taste some local delicacies and most importantly, discover Belgium. On foot.
Of course I am painting here the idyllic image of a rain free sunny Belgium J But the rain doesn’t seem to stop any of the walkers (granted, some a way more determined than I am …) and more often than not, once we started a walk the rain stops and sometimes we even the sun comes out.
With the festive season coming up, look out for organized thematic walks, such as Christmas walks or food tasting walks. A bit pricier than the normal organized walks and yes, usually a bit easier and shorter but definitely a fun way of discovering Belgium from within.
Now were are those hiking boots?
this blog post also appeared on Fans of Flanders