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  • Day9

    Last day in Bruges

    February 9 in Belgium ⋅ 🌬 13 °C

    Another amazing day in this beautiful city. I recommend you visit. Stunning architecture, history, beers and chocolates. You could walk around here for hours and never be bored.

    Spent the morning at the beer Museum and of course had to sample 3 beers..... It's a hard life. Took some selfies haha.

    Also had a chance to catch up with Dana a friend and colleague from Lanzarote which was lovely, had a bit of lunch and a good chat.

    I love it here and I will be back for sure.
    Read more

  • Day22

    Daytrip to Brugges

    July 23, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 35 °C

    Found our way to Bruges on the train a mere 25 mins away.
    Much quieter and quainter that Gent. as we explored the cobbled streets and market squares. Found a fab little place for breakfast.
    Energy levels low today so explored the Belfry and the Cathedral but didnt partake in any museum visits or other tourist activities. Really hot at 30 C - why don’t Europeans have air con?? It’s sweaty madness.
    Back resting and watching Tour de France before another big night out tonight - off to the final performance of Hendrik and Steve followed by an after party- another late one. We r on our knees!!
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  • Day23

    Mongolian Visa secured with ease

    July 24, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C

    Thank u Mongolian Embassy in Brussels. They kindly processed our visa applications on the spot meaning we left 1 hour later with a Mongolian Visa in our passports.
    Russian and Mongolian visas procured- China visa to go.

  • Day19

    Dont get to a magician show too late

    July 20, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Arrived in Ghent off the Flibco bus and dropped our bags at Hendrik’s show venue. Then got caught in a thunderstorm so threw ourselves into the nearest cafe. Had 2 coffees before we felt slightly human again and then set off to see a bit of Ghent which is packed with people for its annual 10 day festival. Full of music, shows, street performances etc.
    Ghent is a beautiful city and a bit of a surprise.
    Had dinner at Steve’s and then they announced at 10pm we were not off to bed we were off to a magician show!!!
    We got here with 2 mins to spare and the only seats were in the front row!! A very intimate, slightly weird but amazing card trick show with slightly too much front row audience participation later we left into a heaving night scene of festival Ghent.
    A gin and a long walk home along the canal we finally got to bed at 1am!!! So knackered. This European living/ going out at night is going to take getting used to!!
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  • Day1044

    Passantenhaven de Welvart, Neerpelt

    May 6, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ 🌧 7 °C

    N.B. Those of you who read our previous blog post on Puurs will notice the overnight shot is the same as on this post. Sorry! We messed up and attached the wrong photo to Puurs 🤦‍♀️. This has now been changed and fingers crossed all the correct photos are uploaded to this post! 🤞

    This wasn't our first choice of overnight spot, nor was it our second, but we are here, overlooking Kanaal Bocholt-Herentals and grateful to have somewhere for Martha to rest tired her tyres!

    We'd only planned to drive 80km from our leisure centre stopover in Puurs, so we nipped into town to pick up a few groceries from DelHaize supermarket, delaying our set off. Although we encountered no traffic congestion, the Belgian's preference for prefab roads, narrow lanes and sharp turns rattled our nerves as well as the crockery in our cupboards.

    Our sat nav tried to take us to the first place programmed in via a cycle track alongside a high security enclosure surrounded by a razor wire topped fence. Vicky found an alternate route on Maps.Me but we soon encountered a 'no entry to unauthorised persons' sign and decided to cut our losses.

    The second place sounded perfect; a car park beside a pancake boat, with access to the canal for canoeing and towpath for cycling. Much to our disappointment barriers blocked our entry. Feeling dispirited, we searched Park4Night once again and found this official site for €6 a night. With around 10 side by side bays looking out over the canal, Passantenhaven (Passerby Harbour) was well away from roads and close to a small mooring area for visiting boats. The ticket we bought from the machine included electric hookup but the end bay we had chosen was too far away from the socket for our lead. We were tired and made the decision to stay where we were, with a view of the towpath out of our side window instead of squeezing in between two other vans. We felt grateful that the solar panel we fitted has been doing such a good job keeping our batteries charged!

    A few fishers stood on the bank but now we have crossed into Belgium, Will isn't licenced. Instead he got out his new toy; a camera drone. The fishers' eyes lit up and he was soon chatting away to them, answering their questions about it. One thing he didn't tell them was that we've named it Peggy (short for Pegasus). We hope it will really enhance our ability to capture the essence of places we visit. Talking of licences, Peggy needs liability insurance to fly in many EU countries, including Germany and Lithuania, so that was a job Will set about that afternoon, taking the mandatory and rigorous online test to prove he knew the regulations, in order to aquire said insurance.

    After tea we took a stroll along the towpath, meeting other walkers, cyclists, ducks, geese and goslings along the way. The route is part of a long distance cycle track. This 45km North Limburg section connects with others to form 270km of mountain bike trails. It inspired Vicky to an 11km morning tandem ride. Away from the groups of pupils cycling to school it was really quite peaceful in the dappled light cast by lines of tall trees. She even spotted a woodpecker.

    One of the things we liked about the Passantenhaven site was the recycling facilities it provided. We always find the Belgian system problematic, so our bins were overflowing when we arrived. It was therefore disappointing to see the refuse collector emptying the compost, paper and packaging bins into one black bag before tossing it in their van with the rest of the rubbish.

    For lunch we walked into Neerpelt in search of Belgian frites. It didn't take long to find a frituur and we decided to eat in, so as to try and avoid waste packaging. Unfortunately our shared portion came in a plastic tray, but they tasted good! We spent a little time window shopping, but even more time in the large cookery store. There is a long list of cooking related items we are looking for but despite their wide range, nothing but a digital thermometer quite fitted the bill.

    We'd planned to go canoeing in the afternoon but it was chilly and began to rain as we made our way back. We half decided to drive on and upon inspecting the motorhome facilities at our site we confirmed this decision. We found that the large bin required tokens to unlock it, available from the tourist information office or boulangerie when you presented the tear off portion of your parking ticket. There was also a sign next to the water tap indicating it wasn't suitable for drinking. We stingily didn't want to pay a further €6 when we knew we could get a free site with free services elsewhere, so we hit the road towards Germany.
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  • Day21

    Kate's first silent disco

    July 22, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    We made it back into town for the 11pm fireworks to celebrate Belgium’s National Day before enjoying more of the festival’s music.
    On the way to the last tram we stumbled across a silent disco by the Cathedral. Kate has her first taste of dancing to ur own tunes... luckily for us there was only 1 to listen to! Another great night thanks to Hendrik and Steve. Finally got to bed at 2.30 am!Read more

  • Day8

    Atomium and Plasticarium

    July 9, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Amazing morning at the Atomarium built for the 1958 World Expo.
    Mind blowing visual exhibition inside called “ A circular journey”- could have spent hours watching.
    Beat any expectations.
    The design museum aka plasticarium was full of super cool furniture and domestic items.
    All of this followed by the best salad lunch in a little cafe up the road from our accommodation.Read more

  • Day20

    Great day at Ghent Festival

    July 21, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☁️ 20 °C

    I wish I was posting this at the end of our day but despite it being nearly 9.30pm we r due back into town at 10.30pm for our evening out with Hendrik and Steve straight after their performance- god help us!!
    Spent the day eating, drinking and walking around Ghent taking in all the free activities.
    Spent a lovely 30 mins listening to a cracking band, listened to some drummers, walked more than 10kms.... and then walked up 440 steps of the Cathedral tower to get a fabulous view of the city. Coming down was worse than going up!
    Sat by the river with a wine and then had dinner before coming home for a rest but have a feeling 1 hour is not going to be enough. This “holiday” is like an endurance event!!
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  • Day21

    Party with Ghent's Talented and ? Famous

    July 22, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Had a very quiet day planning. Then after dinner we were taken swimming in the Leie River Ghent which also doubles as a toilet for the local cows!
    What was hilarious was after getting ourselves unceremoniously in we realised we couldn’t easily get out!!
    Several attempts and both flying backwards onto our asses (one of us into prickles and one of us into mud later!!) we got ourselves out onto the bank!!
    At 10.25pm we left for Sven’s bday party only to be stranded when a tram derailed.
    Steve cycled home and rescued us and walked us to the poshest party with the most talented group of people we could encounter. We had entertainment at professional level.
    Now on last tram home again...2.02!!
    This holiday is going to kill us ps the house where the party was has its own tunnel!!
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  • Day23

    Evening river swim- Ghent

    July 24, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ 🌙 24 °C

    To celebrate the procurement of our Mongolian visa and the fact it was sweltering we spent a pleasant evening swimming in the Leie River followed by a v nice dinner in a quaint little village (whose name we don’t know).
    The highlight being getting to travel in Hendrik’s super smart new campervan which is less than 1 week old- Kate is now googling the price of Citroen Clever Vans!!Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Flanders, Flandern, Flandes, Flandre, Vlaams Gewest, Flandres

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