On the Vespa through the kingdom
A road trip is the ultimate dream for many travel lovers and the epitome of freedom, liveliness, experience and spontaneity. Not knowing in the morning where to sleep in the evening or just stopping when the perfect scenery opens up and taking photos. Whether alone and closely connected with oneself and nature or driving together with others from sight to sight – there are countless possibilities for a successful round trip. No matter which way your heart beats for: The Kingdom of Belgium is the ideal place for a road trip on the Vespa.
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Choosing the right pace
Everyone feels relaxation in a different way. There are travelers who like driving from place to place and are hardly interested in sightseeing. Freely after the slogan: The way is the goal. The scenery whizzing by and the connection with nature, are quite enough to experience the trip with maximum relaxation. Others need enough breaks to enjoy and marvel at the surroundings, cities or natural wonders. This own understanding of the subject of travel is a decisive factor in determining how much time must be planned for a round trip. Ideally, the route should take you across the country to the Atlantic Ocean and back again. For the approximately 700 kilometer route, 6 to 10 days should be chosen.
In terms of area, the Belgian kingdom is about the same size as North Rhine-Westphalia. The country, which has 11 million inhabitants, can be excellently experienced on well-maintained roads in a few days on a round trip. As in almost every European country, wild camping is prohibited in Belgium. Therefore, guesthouses and hotels can be used as sleeping accommodations. If you love adventure, are on a budget and are traveling in the summer, you can take a tent with you and spend the night at campsites. It should be noted, however, that a Vespa offers only limited space and a tent takes up a lot of it.
A country with two faces
Due to the history of Belgium, there are still two very different regions. In the south of the country, French is spoken predominantly. In the northern part, Dutch is the preferred language. The very romantic south, also known as the Walloon region, is the ideal starting point for the tour. At the border with France, the first place to wait is Orval, which is home to an abbey that is about 900 years old. The monastery invites you to linger in the medicinal herb garden and to relax while marveling at the ancient ruins. Afterwards, the tour continues to Bouillon, 35 km away. Inside the very well preserved castle, its buildings and rooms, you get a good impression of how life must have been about 1,000 years ago.
Just north of Bouillon lies the picturesque village of Redu, which you pass through on the way to Durbuy. The sleepy village has 400 inhabitants. The special thing about Redu are the 20 bookstores and antiquarian bookshops, which invite you to browse and marvel. It is also worth stopping at the huge raspberry plantation. Arriving in the medieval town of Durbuy, it is worthwhile to stay a little longer, as the surrounding area has a lot to offer. If you have a little more time, stop in La Roche-en-Ardenne on the way to Durbuy. The pretty town enchants its visitors with medieval charm and offers the possibility of long walks or a canoe trip on one of the two rivers. Afterwards, easily passable roads with beautiful views let the Vespa glide north towards Brussels. A short stopover in Dinant is a good opportunity to prepare for the hustle and bustle in Belgium’s capital, as the flow of tourists is already getting a bit bigger here.
Change of perspective – as if in another country
Once in Brussels, travelers no longer find themselves in Wallonia, but in Flanders. Instead of French, Dutch is spoken from now on. After a stop in Belgium’s capital, the journey continues to Ghent. To discover all the sights and little alleys, it makes sense to stay more than just one night. A trip to Bruges, 50 kilometers away, and a side trip to the Atlantic Ocean, should not be missed by tourists. Staying more than one night is definitely a good idea. Afterwards, it is worth heading south to Liège. This small city near the Netherlands has been considered the cultural and commercial center of the region for some time. There is a lot to see and discover here. Just the right thing to finish the tour.
Sleeping outside the metropolises saves a lot of money
Those who complete a tour of Belgium on a Vespa should expect average prices for accommodation and food. The prices are quite similar compared to Germany. Only in the tourist strongholds are accommodations very price-intensive. Money can be saved by sleeping on the campground. That this spartan way of traveling has certain limitations is known to everyone who has ever taken a road trip. However, due to the Central European standard of Belgium, the route is a good choice for both novices and experienced professionals.