Stalen Ros van Heer Borluut cycle route

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Stalen Ros van Heer Borluut cycle route

49,4 km
2u 45m
83% Verhard

Bisdomplein, 9000 Gent

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Stalen Ros van Heer Borluut cycle route

With ‘Het Stalen Ros van Heer Borluut’ (Lord Borluut’s Steel Steed), we lead you along the Keizerpoort across the Scheldt, for a southern cycling circuit in the green periphery around Ghent. Go cycling and discover Jan van Eyck’s Ghent in modern-day Ghent.

Starting point

Bisdomplein Gent

Node 5


Keizerpark Gent.jpg

In van Eyck’s time, Ghent’s southernmost gateway, the Keizerpoort, also called the Clarapoort, after the monastery of the Rijke Klaren that lay on the other side of the Scheldt, stood just before the bicycle bridge on the city side of the Keizerpark. The Keizerpoort was a sturdy fortification, with four towers, a front gate and a drawbridge. This meant anyone leaving or entering the city was always seen. Today, there are no remainders of the gate, except for the name of the park, which is now a popular place for small festivals, Sunday picnics or blissful idleness.

Node 5-7 

Coninxdonck Castle

The present Castle Coninxdonck Castle was built on the foundations of a 13th-century castle owned by Elisabeth Muysconinckx, Lady of Coninckxdonk, wife of Boudewijn Borluut, an ancestor of Simon Borluut, the 15th-century host of this cycling route. You can now rent Coninxdonck Castle for parties. The owner fills his ice cellar with his own Coninx beers. One of them is called Lam Gods, a tribute to Elisabeth Borluut, depicted on the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb and directly related to the above-mentioned Boudewijn. And thus, this circle is complete.

Node 12


The Bosseveerhoeve, down here on the left, next to the towpath, belonged to the Cistercian abbey of Nieuwenbosch in the 13th century. Both were situated in the same meander of the Scheldt, which was straightened in 1882 and separated the farm from the abbey site. This meant that the Scheldt suddenly lay in the middle. The abbey fell prey to iconoclasts in 1579 and was destroyed. The farm also shared in the destruction, although it remained intact. The farmhouse you see here today is not the original one from the 13th century, but it does contain remnants of that original farmhouse. The name Bosseveerhoeve refers to one of the three medieval Scheldt ferries here in Heusden.

Node 87-88

Grand Noble Castle

Fietsbrug Gent-11.jpg
Fietsbrug Gent 7.jpg

Parkbos Grand Noble is one of Ghent’s green oases, and was recently connected to the centre in a straight line of safe cycling bridges over the E40 and the R4. This outlying area was a popular green oasis even in Van Eyck’s time and the centuries before that. Grand Noble Castle was already a country residence of the abbot of St Peter’s Abbey in the 13th century. Gerald the Devil got it on loan for a while. You cycle past it after node 87, but unfortunately, it is not open to the public.

Node 67 

Kasteel Borluut

Kasteelpark Borluut.jpg
Kasteel Borluut.jpg

Borluut Castle is literally a stone’s throw away from Grand Noble Castle. Follow the path of this imaginary arrow to node 67. The ‘White Castle’, the ‘seat of seigniory’ of the Borluut family of Ghent, stood here in the 15th century. (Doesn’t that sound wonderful?!) The castle you see today was built in the 19th century and was still owned by a member of the Borluut family at that point. However, it was sold at the end of the 19th century. It is now part of the city’s patrimony. So feel free to cycle inside, find a comfy bench, and enjoy the peace and quiet of the park.

Node 62-63


Sint-Martens-Latem is the proverbial icing on the cake in the vicinity of Ghent. The picturesque Lys River meanders past villas and castles here. You can enjoy all that beauty from a viewing distance by bike. And as long as you follow the Lys downstream, you know Ghent is on your path. The last village on your route is worth a stop. The picturesque Afsnee dates back to the 7th century. Its Romanesque church with surrounding cemetery is probably not much younger. It is still half an hour of cycling from here to the centre of Ghent. You can refuel at Nenuphar restaurant by the ferry, but only if you eat something too.

Node 4


Gent STAM.jpg

The STAM city museum is the logical conclusion of this route. The history of Ghent is on display here, from the earliest prehistoric times to the present day. You’ll also find the famous painting 'Panoramic View of Ghent 1534' here, a detailed city plan and a unique document of historical interest that is representative of 15th-century Ghent. The massive tomb of Viscount Hugo II stands here in all its feudal glory as well. So be sure to stop in for a short visit. Or save it for another day and take a little more time. 

Bisdomplein, Ghent