Saturday, 3 November 2012

Brussels' little sprout


Back in Belgium, I set out to complete one of the lists that appear on Peakbagger, namely the Belgian Province high points. I considered carefully what kit I should take and what provisions I would need. And, then put an apple and camera in my pocket and set off.

The first goal was the highest point in Brussels. This turned out to be in a wood next to the ring road. I set off from Welriekendedreef, down the Willeriekendedreef path, turned left on Hendricksdreef and then a sharp left on Damesrustdreef to the summit - which could have been marked by any one of a number of trees. I continued down Damesrustdreef until it met Willeriekendedreef, which inexorably took me back to the start. And, yes, all the paths in this wood really do have their own names.
Brussels HP
UNESCO World Heritage site - Grand Place, Brussels
VF kit on ready
Having never been to Brussels before, I decided to have a quick wander around the centre and have a look at the Grand Place - yet another UNESCO World Heritage site.
Brussels Grand Place was, deservedly, voted the most beautiful square in Europe in 2010. See: 

Note, San Marcos Piazza is not even in the top ten.

Micturating minor
It's all a facade

You don't need to go to Nepal to get your souvenirs
Kemmelberg summit
Signal de Botrange is the highest point in Walloon, so all I needed to do was to bag the Flemish high point to complete the list and become the first person registered on Peakbagger to do so.
This meant driving out into the West Flanders fields and back into WW1 history again to a village called Kemmel.
 Nearby is the Kemmelberg (165m), also known as Mont Kemmel. Kemmelberg was captured by the Germans in April 1918 and recaptured in late September 1918. The trees have grown back since.

From there it was a matter of driving into the French Flanders and heading for Calais and the DFDS ferry to Dover.

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