Round Sluis

Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium

Cycling route: 125525

Provided by:

40.7 km
02:23 h
718 kcal
9 m


If you cycle just outside Sluis you have a beautiful view of the beautifully restored fortifications of this old town. There is still water running past - and a nice cycle path. On one side, green meadows stretch endlessly, while on the other side of the path you see the high ramparts that have been laid out in a star shape. Also put your bike aside to walk into Sluis, this historic town is very beautiful. The shops here are open every day, so you can also browse around on Sundays. In the center, windmill De Brak immediately attracts attention. The mill owes its name to the French hunting dog breed Braque - after all, hunting dogs stick their noses to the wind when hunting, just as the mill turns its blades to the wind. This mill was the first stone mill in this region in 1739 and was built as a fortress mill on the southeastern border of Fort Sluis. The mill is still in regular operation and home-ground (pancake) flour is available in the mill. Less known but just as nice is Aardenburg, the oldest city in Zeeland. The Roman, medieval and 17th century fortifications, the centuries-long habitation and the high location make the soil of Aardenburg one large open-air museum. You can learn all about it in the Municipal Archaeological Museum. In recent years, several studios, galleries and antique shops have established themselves in this city, so it is worth stopping by. Be sure to take a look at the statue of Margareta Sandra, in the Verloren Kostje park - long ago the Southern Bulwark of the Aardenburg defenses. Poems have been placed around the statue with the subject of War and Peace. The statue is an ode to Margareta Sandra, the wife of alderman Pieter Roman, who resisted a French invasion in the late 17th century by calling on the townspeople to fire pots, pans, kettles and chains with cannons at the enemy - and with good luck. The French were banned twice at Aardenburg, quite an achievement. The environment here is also worth a visit. After centuries of flooding and attempts to reclaim the land from the sea, the region around Aardenburg has mainly been shaped by land reclamation and agriculture in recent centuries. The beautiful landscape of dikes, polder roads and beautiful creeks is perfect for a bike ride. Further on you cycle a long way along the tree-lined Leopold Canal. However, when Belgium declared independence and seceded from the Netherlands, the Dutch closed off the drainage streams to the Western Scheldt - now Dutch territory. The polders on the Belgian side became so humid that even malaria (called polder fever at the time) broke out. The construction of the Leopold Canal brought a solution. In addition to the drainage function, a military function was immediately given to it, in case there was another war with the Netherlands. That is why the canal pretty much follows the border between Belgium and the Netherlands. However, it never came to that. The only time the canal fulfilled a military function was at the end of World War II, when heavy battles were fought here with the Germans, who insisted on keeping the Scheldt estuary in their hands. The Leopold Canal will automatically lead you to the Siphon (or Sifon), a hamlet at the place where the Damse Vaart is crossed by the Schipdonk and Leopold Canal. These canals used to be led under the Damse Vaart by means of a siphon, but this was destroyed in 1940. Now the canals continue and the Damse Vaart is interrupted. A very special place, beautifully overgrown with tall trees and wild shrubs. The history of the Damse Vaart goes back even further - it was dug by order of Napoleon, during the French rule. He liked the idea of connecting the major northern French ports with the Western Scheldt in Antwerp, via - among others - Bruges and Sluis. Thousands of Spanish prisoners of war are deployed for this large-scale project. At the fall of the empire, the canal had been dug just beyond Hoeke, Willem I had the waterway extended to Sluis in the early 19th century. If you follow the canal you will automatically return to this beautiful old fortified town, where you started your bike ride through the history of this special border area.
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Height Profile


# Description Distance
Artisan Restaurant-Lunch-Tearoom (Moerhuizestraat, 9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 0.00 km
6 (9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 1.09 km
3 (9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 1.77 km
3 (9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 1.98 km
3 (9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 2.19 km
3 (9990, Maldegem, Flanders, Belgium) 2.41 km


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