Cafés between Lys and Scheldt cycling route

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Cafés between Lys and Scheldt cycling route

Length
55,9 km
Time
2u50m
Terrain
83% Verhard

Zuiderlaan 50, 9000 Gent

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Fietsknooppuntenbord

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Extended route description

In the area between Lys and Scheldt, not only the towpaths along both rivers beckon, but also the cosy cafés. Hop on your bike at the Blaarmeersen for a pleasantly flat ride through a charming part of East Flanders near Ghent. And leave those provisions at home for once, because there are plenty of places to refuel!

Starting point - Node 4

De Blaarmeersen

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In what used to be a marshy area on the Lys, the Blaarmeersen, a 100-hectare recreational area, was created in the mid-1970s. Today, it is a pleasant green area with groves, sunbathing meadows and walking paths around a central pond with a beach and a playground. The 'beach of Ghent', then, and that does lead to some crowded scenes in summer temperatures. You can also pitch your tent at the campsite here, as well as book a guided canoe or kayak trip that will take you all the way across the Lys to Afsnee. Urban athletes can try out their best moves there from summer 2020 at Belgium's largest open-air skate park (4,000 m²)! 

Node 4-52

Kantien

End your ride in beauty at Kantien, a trendy restaurant on the Watersportbaan. An instant holiday feeling will overcome you on the sun terrace, overlooking water and water sports. 'Sharing is caring' is the motto here, just like in the south. Recommended in the glass: the Pils 13, a Ghent artisanal beer brewed by the owners. Not filtered and therefore nice and bitter, hoppy and pure!

Node 5-4

Ghent

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Flanders' most versatile and bike-friendly city will spoil you with a mix of culture, history, welcoming (veggie) restaurants and a great deal of ambiance. Settle down at a table along the Graslei or Korenlei, take comedian Wouter Deprez's audio tour of the Gravensteen, stroll through the picturesque Patershol and take that romantic selfie from Sint-Michielsbrug.

Node 5

Keizerspark

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Two modern cycle bridges turned the isolated Keizerspark on the outskirts of Ghent into a hip and green hangout. On sunny days, it is a hive of activity: local residents as well as fishermen, basketball players and skaters have their familiar spots along the water.

Node 3-5

Liedermeerspark

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Past node 3, there is some climbing and skimming over the bridges on the Zwijnaarde Canal and the Ringvaart. Past the Ghelamco Arena, the stadium of AA Ghent, it heads toward the Merelbeke lock and the Yachting Club. Cycle right into Liedermeerspark for a short while.

Node 6-3

Het Gouden Hoofd

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Zwijnaarde village is known for its historic kiosk, but just as well for this authentic catering restaurant with a fantastic terrace. Everything is right here: the location, the service and a menu that beats all hunger and thirst. At the wooden stall next to the café, you can also order ice cream on the go in the summer!

Node 34

Castle of Welden

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There was already a fortification here in the Middle Ages, of which only the circular moat with rampart wall and a tower remain today. The present water castle in late Baroque style dates from the 18th century. Visiting is not possible, but it makes for a pretty picture from Weldendreef. 

Node 34

Café Boldershof

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For 25 years, Connie has been serving up Zevergem's finest beer heads in this brown pub in the shadow of the church. There is a nice terrace on the village square in the summer.

Node 40-34

De Ponthoeve

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When father Marc Morel wanted to scale back activities on his farm to a degree, his son Gert transformed the pigsty into the cosy Ponthoeve. Here, you can eat or drink something inside, but when the weather is nice, the spacious terrace is the place to be in the area. On the menu: fresh beers, delicious farmhouse ice cream and richly filled farmhouse sandwiches with cheese, raw ham or head meat. The desserts are nothing to sniff at either!

Node 24

Hospicebossen

The 58-hectare Hospicebossen – also called the Nazareth Forests – are known for their biodiversity. Different tree species are divided into separate plots there. The name refers to the former owner of these woods, the Hospice of Ghent, now the Public centre for Social Welfare. Today, the forest is owned by the Province of East Flanders, which engages in sustainable management there, increasing the habitat for bat and owl species, among other things. Cyclists, hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians and dogs (on a leash!) welcome, every day from half an hour before sunrise to half an hour after sunset.

Node 23-79

Castle Viteux and Café Hubert

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The old farmhouse that stood here until 1847 gave way to a spacious country house with a neoclassical appearance, which was expanded at the end of the 19th century with a park and a pond. By order of the former owner Hubert Viteux, it was converted into a real castle. You are welcome in the coach house from Wednesday through Sunday for a bite or a drink at Café Hubert, where they set out garden tables and parasols on the forecourt in summer.

Node 88

Parkbos

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Node 88 is where you'll find the vast Parkbos, one of the new green lungs around Ghent: 1,200 hectares and extending across Zwijnaarde, Sint-Denijs-Westrem, De Pinte and Sint-Martens-Latem. There are no fewer than 9 castles here, including the Grand Noble castle. Where the 'Goed ten Abeele' had stood in the 13th century, which belonged to the wealthy Ghent St Peter's Abbey, since 1860 there has been a neoclassical castle with three beautiful avenues. 

In addition to the castle itself, the lands also feature a landscaped park with accompanying pond, carriage houses and gardener's house. This used to be private land, but now you can walk in it and – behind the castle – even picnic at a new picnic table. Bridges and boardwalks in the wetlands add to the fairytale atmosphere.

Node 62-63

Afsnee

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At node 62, the Afsnee ferry will take you across the Lys for free. On the other side, be sure to take a look at the idyllic St John the Baptist Church. Take note: the ferryman takes a break between noon and 1pm! 

RESTAURANT NENUPHAR

With its lovely waterfront terrace and artistic décor, Nenuphar is the perfect lunch stop on this route. Since 1795, the people of Ghent have loved coming here to get their feet under a table. On the menu: a wide selection of classic and trendy dishes, prepared with skill and brought to the table with love. Booking in advance is a good idea!

Node 57-62

Oude Drie Leien

The 'strategically located' café of Oude Drie Leien inn offers a beautiful view of the Lys, which goes in two directions here. Unfortunately, it is tiny, so it will be a struggle to find a place here on hot days. Across the street from the inn are the Hoge Lake marshes, where there are always many geese perching.

Node 57

Abbey of Drongen

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Once you cross the Ringvaart, you burst right onto Drongen's charming village square. Unfortunately, the beautiful abbey cannot be visited individually – unless you are going there for reflection. But in a group, you can look inside this Norbertine abbey with a 10-hectare estate. An engaging guide will open the doors to some special gems such as the neo-Gothic chapel, the unusual elements in the building corridors, the paintings and artworks. Tours last an hour and a half and can be booked for 10 people or more.

De Blaarmeersen