birds

Peregrine falcons in Brussels 2015

April 2015 update: Another successful hatch: follow the webcam for some great sights of the nest.

May 2014 update: The peregrines are breeding once again in the cathedral, and you can see a live webcam here.

April 2013 update: The peregrine falcons are back in the tower of the St. Michael and St. Gudula’s Cathedral in the middle of Brussels, and the female has already laid her eggs and is brooding them. You can see a live webcam of the nest here. Read the article below for background information on these great birds.

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Peregrine falcons in Brussels 2014

April 2014 update: Four eggs laid, three hatched and the youngsters doing well! Click here for a live link to the video stream!

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April 2013 update: The peregrines are back in the cathedral tower, and the female has already laid her eggs and is brooding them. You can see a live webcam of the nest here. Read the article below for background information onthese great birds, in the middle of Brussels.

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April 2012 update: this year’s eggs have just hatched: click and watch this video.

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Check out this great video (April 2011) of the peregrine falcon chicks in the center of Brussels!

St. Michael and St. Gudula’s Cathedral, Brussels

If you think that the only city birds present in Brussels are pigeons, jackdaws and those flashily feathered but annoyingly noisy parakeets, then you are in for a big surprise. Breeding in one of the busiest areas of the city is a pair of one of the most exciting birds in the world.

The area in question centres on St. Michael and St. Gudula’s Cathedral. In 2005 — to the delight of ornithologists — a pair of peregrine falcons nested on one of the cathedral’s towers, where they successfully raised four young. In 2006 three eggs were laid, although only one chick survived. Since then a pair of peregrines has returned every year – and 2011 is no exception (see video above).Read More »Peregrine falcons in Brussels 2014

Leuven-Mechelen canal

The Leuven-Mechelen Canal

Cycling along the Leuven-Mechelen Canal is easy and fun thanks to wide, clearly signposted cycle paths.

The hills are alive: La-Roche-en-Ardenne

Choosing where to walk in the Ardennes is not easy; there are so many wonderful areas to explore. But if you have never been to the Ardennes before, I would recommend La Roche-en-Ardenne. It’s an excellent place to start getting acquainted with this marvellous area of Belgium.

La Roche-en-Ardenne

One advantage of this location is that if you set off from Brussels in gorgeous weather and arrive in La Roche to find it pelting down with rain (which in the Ardennes is quite possible), then you can simply change your plan and visit one or more of the town’s museums: the Milling Museum, the Second World War Museum, the Pottery Museum, or even the Ardennes Ham Museum. The town also has a castle with a ghost, which conveniently appears every evening through the summer (although apparently not if it’s raining).Read More »The hills are alive: La-Roche-en-Ardenne

Heidebos near Moerbeke

Between the villages of Moerbeke and Wachtebeke, a few kilometres to the east of Sint-Niklaas, lies the Heidebos, a large nature reserve incorporating deciduous and coniferous forests as well as a vast expanse of heath land. Three signposted walks start from the car park on Fortstraat; all are ideal for young children.Read More »Heidebos near Moerbeke

Saeftinghe

The Drowned Land of Saeftinghe

Saeftinghe is not to be explored without a guide, but can be viewed from its perimeter, which offers a lovely walk

First, a word of caution. If you are looking for a gentle Sunday afternoon stroll in a pretty park with a conveniently located waffle-van, then the Verdronken (Drowned) Land of Saeftinghe near Antwerp isn’t for you. It’s muddy, it’s exposed, and there’s no waffle-van for kilometres. But if you are looking for a huge dose of fresh sea air, some peace and solitude, and a touch of wilderness, then it’s definitely worth a visit.

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