Hidden Belgium: Vilvoorde by Waterbus

Hidden Belgium: Vilvoorde by Waterbus

The Waterbus has just relaunched regular trips on the canal that runs from Brussels to Vilvoorde. The ferries pick up passengers and bikes on the quayside next to Kanal art centre and drop them off on Vilvoorde’s new waterfront.

It makes an interesting and eco-friendly trip out of the capital for anyone looking for something a bit different.

But is there anything to see when you get to Vilvoorde? Most people think of it as a grim industrial place under the Brussels Ring viaduct. But the city is changing fast along the old waterfront. You can drink coffee at the Kruitfabriek cultural centre, head into town along the River Senne footpath, and eat lunch in an authentic Flemish restaurant.

Horsemeat is the local speciality. Paardenvlees, in Dutch. Maybe not for everyone. But there is also a good vegetarian restaurant. And a cool lunch spot.

Vilvoorde also has a stunning street art trail and a romantic park on the opposite side of the canal with little bridges, hidden lakes and a Japanese garden. Enough to fill a day. Then back to Brussels on the last boat (16.00).

Derek Blyth’s hidden secret of the day: Derek Blyth is the author of the bestselling “The 500 Hidden Secrets of Belgium”. He picks out one of his favourite hidden secrets for The Brussels Times every day.


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