From nature to culture in Turnhout

Hiking in Turnhout, Flanders, Belgium

Hiking route 681850

Provided by: De Kempen

1246 34
21.2 km
05:17 h
1203 kcal
35 m
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Height Profile


Turnhout is the capital of the Kempen, the city of beguines, fens and bunkers. This walk takes you through the rich history of this beautiful city: along the robust fortress, wide canal and the impressive castle of the Dukes of Brabant. Outside the city you can wander through a rugged fen area, hidden for years under dull coniferous forest.

Silence in the city

The picturesque beguinage dates from the 14th century. In this oasis of peace in the middle of the center you will find cozy houses, authentic cobblestones, green hedges, old water pumps and wrought iron street lamps. Only the chirping of birds does not make this a completely silent place. The beguinage, together with sixteen other Flemish beguinages, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998. The last beguine died here in 2002. You will find a museum there to learn more about the beguine culture.

Heather and fens

The walk also takes you outside the city walls. The municipality is doing everything it can to restore the heathland and fen landscape. Monotonous coniferous trees are cut down, as is the American oak. The open landscape is increasingly resembling what it looked like here before the twentieth century. Beyond the Koeven you wander alternately through corn fields and rough grassland. And along the Bels Lijntje, the former railway line to Tilburg, there is a whopper of a watchtower. At the top you are rewarded with a view of an open landscape with woolly dots in the distance, just like a sheep painting.

Copyright photos: Mie De Backer 

Visitor center Park and garden Museum Watchtower Beguinage Water Cultural routes Nature Route City routes Castle
De Kempen

Just across the border from North Brabant you will find the Antwerpse Kempen. Enjoy forests, heaths, beautiful old sights such as beguinages and abbeys and charming towns and villages such as Turnhout, Lier and Malle. You can also let yourself be pampered culinary with the most delicious regional dishes

Share this route with others


# Description Distance
2300, Turnhout, Flanders, Belgium 0.00 km
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Stadsboerderij (Stadsboerderij, 2300, Turnhout, Flanders, Belgium) 2.74 km
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Place name directory

  • Turnhout, Flanders
  • Merksplas, Flanders


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