10-Day Flanders Adventure 2014 Itinerary

The grand canal in Ghent, a highlight of the tour

Northern Belgium is known as the “Flanders” region, and is home to some of the most scenic cycling in Europe. The mostly flat landscape will take you through lush green farms, quaint country towns, medieval villages, and dirt trails along meandering rivers. Along the way we will pause for refreshments at some of Belgium’s finest breweries and beer cafes, some of which have brewing traditions going back hundreds of years! Of course, there is much more history to sample in this area, but the primary focus of the trip is, you guessed it, beer! Our guides are first and foremost beer lovers, and will ensure everyone on the trip is able to enjoy, discover, and learn all about this magical fermented beverage! 

 

2014 tour dates now available! (Click here for registration)

Price: 1,770 to 2,400 Euro, depending on options selected


Day # 1 Brussels to Kortrijk - 8 miles

Highlights today:

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  • A personal tour around Brussels checking out some nearby sights and learning a little history of the area (don’t worry, not too much history, this is a beer tour after all!)
  • Have a great lunch at a cafe, get to know your fellow riders, share a beer or two.
  • A train ride out to the country where we will collect our sweet bikes.
  • A short warm up ride along a canal to nearby Kortrijk,
  • A “Mystery Stop” today (We’re not going to advertise everything!)
  • Group dinner option followed by a visit to a great specialty beer bar in town.

 


Day # 2 - Kortrijk to Oudenaarde 31 miles

Highlights Today:

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  • Amazing, scenic ride along the canal the entire morning.
  • Picnic lunch (weather permitting) at a huge park. We can play music, frisbee, relax.
  • Short stop in the town of Oudenaarde, an important cycling city in Belgium. Chance to walk around and explore the town.
  • Highlight of the day: A private tour of Brouwerij Liefmans
  • Today we will learn about the “Oud Bruin” style of beer and why it is so important to this region.
  • Sleep in a tiny village nearby tonight at a cozy B&B. The owners are really fun people and will have an optional “mystery tasting” planned for us.

 


Day # 3 Oudenaarde to Gent - 33 miles

 Highlights today:

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  • A little change of scenery this morning with a few small hills looking out towards stunning view of the Flemish Ardennes.
  • An amazing brewery tour today! Brouwerij De Ryck is a small family owned brewery, and we are lucky to get a private tour from the brewing family themselves!
  • The brewery just won a GOLD medal at the Euro Beer Star awards for their “Arend Tripel”. You can bet we’ll be tasting some of that :)
  • A magical lunch provided by the brewery today that is too epic to even mention.
  • Afternoon ride towards Gent. Melow, lots of fields and wind turbines along the way.
  • In the medieval city of Gent – A great hotel with a private courtyard, a brief walking/history tour, and lots of beer bars to explore!
  • For the brave: A “Mystery Bar” option a 10 PM.

 


Day # 4 Second night in Gent + a day trip to Ertvelde - 25 miles

Highlights today:

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  • No need to pack the luggage on the bikes today as we instead will take a day trip North, near the Dutch border.
  • An amazing brewery visit lined up at family-owned Brouwerij Van Steenberge. Tour + a very generous tasting session awaits!
  • Back in Gent we can have an optional “Bottle Share Night” – Everyone brings a beer with them from their home town/region and shares it with the group! It’s awesome fun.
  • Those needing a day to rest their legs can opt to take the bus to the brewery today.

 


Day #5 Gent to Brugge - 29 miles

Highlights today:

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  • Amazingly scenic ride today, following the main canal most of the way to Brugge.
  • Having lunch at one of our favorite cafes, located in a harbor along the canal.
  • A fun brewery visit today: Brouwerij Fort Lapin, a TINY brewery new to the area. We’ll get a private tour from the owner and taste a few of his awesome beers.
  • The “Mystery Stop” today has been mentioned as some previous riders favorite moment of the tour. (We’re not giving any hints)
  • Brugge has A LOT of great beer bars. I hope you saved some energy! We’ve got a lot of random places to visit. Previous group favorite: A specialty beer pub located in a 800+ year old cellar.
  • Group dinner option tonight with 400+ beers on the menu!
  • Our hotel is amazing and doubles as one of the best beer bars in town!

 


Day #6 Day off in Brugge – 0 miles

Highlights today:

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  • A much needed rest day today for you to explore as you see fit.
  • We’ll give you several suggestions to occupy your day. Horse rides, boat cruises, french fry museum, chocolate tasting, art, or more beer – You won’t be bored! 
  • Those wanting to take another brewery tour can visit the local city brewery “De Halve Maan“.

 


Day # 7 Brugge to Diksmuide via the North Sea - 41 miles

 

Highlights today:

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  • Today will start with a ride west, hitting the North Sea at the charming town of Oostende.
  • A picnic lunch today at a large park near the beach.
  • Next up: De Dolle Brouwers (“The Crazy Brewers”). You are in for a treat as the small husband/wife owned brewery are some of the most fun characters you’ll meet on the tour! (And we will drink beer, too :)
  • A mellow night in Diksmuide, a town loaded with World War history, which you will learn some about.
  • What about a Mystery Stop“, you ask? OK, we will have one of those too :)

 


Day # 8 Diksmuide to Watou - 22 miles

Highlights today:

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  • Big day today, the highlight being a visit to the Abbey St. Sixtus, better known for their Trappist Westvleteren beers.
  • We’ll have lunch at their cafe, taste some beers, and if we are lucky take some home to go.
  • Spring Tours – A visit to the local Hop Museum in Poperinge where we can learn all about the hop industry which thrives in this particular region of Belgium. 
  • Summer Tours – A visit to Brouwerij De Plukker, a small brewery located in the middle of a hop farm, and run by a hop farmer. It will be a tasty education lesson.
  • Next up: Our stay at the B&B at Brouwerij St. Bernardus. This is a very special place, and yes, we will leave some mystery about it as well.
  • Group dinner option tonight in Watou at a very nice gourmet beer-themed restaurant. 

 


Day # 9 Watou to Ieper - 12 miles

Highlights today:

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  • Today starts with, you guessed it, a brewery tour. We’ll walk next door from our B&B to Brouwerij St. Bernardus, famous for their abbey-style beers and previous relationship brewing Westvleteren beers.
  • Today is a half-day off so we will arrive into Ieper early and everyone can have some time to explore this BEAUTIFUL town on their own.
  • A must visit tonight: Last Post, a ceremony which honors those who lost their lives many decades ago. The ceremony is very touching and runs 365 days a year!
  • Beer shopping you ask? Yup, we’ve got another hidden gem loaded with beery goodies we know you’ll enjoy. 

 

 


Day # 10 Ieper to Brussels - 8 miles

Highlights today:

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  • Today will include a short bike ride back to the shop where we will say goodbye to our bicycles and reclaim our baggage.
  • A train ride to Brussels is next, but not just any train ride: We’ll have lunch and some beer tasting to pass the time.
  • They say you save the best for last, and in this case that might be true: A visit to Brasserie Cantillon awaits!
  • Cantillon is known as the world-wide headquarters for sour beer lovers. They make styles of beer known as “Lambic” and “Geuze”, which is sort of like a champagne tasting beer that is really wild compared to anything else. We’ll take a self-guided tour there before saying our goodbyes.
  • Sadly, that’s the end of the tour, but hopefully we’ll all have some new friends, photos, and memories to enjoy!

 


Total mileage: ~222 miles. Difficulty: 2 out of 5 (some minor hills on days #2, #3, and #10)

2014 tour dates now available! (Click here for registration)

Price: 1,770 to 2,400 Euro, depending on options selected