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A perfect daytrip to the Belgian Ardennes: hiking along the Niglinspo & Chefna



One of our favorite things to do on a warm sunny day off is hiking. Belgium has some nice hiking spots, especially in the French part of the country. When we go hiking we expect following things:

• Lots of fun
• Enjoying nature, both its inherent beauty as the peaceful calmth of it
• A nice workout: taking all those steps is good for your health as well:-)

And we can assure you that our latest hiking trip in Belgium was spot on for all those elements.

We did a 14k (8,5 miles) hike near the Ninglingspo, Belgium's only mountain river. The trail next to the river is known as the most popular one in our country.

To beat the crowds we decided to leave early, so we started our walk in the fresh morning dew under a beautiful summer sun.

The walk is very varied. The first part of the hike we followed the small river stream upwards, sometimes wading through the water and sometimes crossing the river by bridges when the river gets too deep. Both fallen tree trunks and constructed wooden bridges are used to 'zigzag' hikers upstream over and beside the Ninglingspo. Sometimes the trail leads over more rockier grounds alongside the riverbed and we had to use ropes to climb the slippery rocks and more steeper parts along the river. A tiny bit of adventure in our beautiful country!


I bet elves are living there somewhere...


Tiny waterfalls and small fairytale like ponds seem to pop up everywhere along the trail, all in the almost magical setting of Belgian Ardennes. With only the soothing sound of the Ninglingspo water trying to find its way in the nearby Amblève river we walked all the way up - which is about 200m higher than the starting point.


Gorgeous!


At this point, less experienced hikers can decide to follow the trails downwards back to the starting point. But our journey didn’t end there though, we went further uphill towards the 'Liège plateau'.

And yes, very soon from that moment on we could call ourselves king of the the hill. At this mount we covered about 400 meter height difference. Because of the dense forests everywhere around, you should not immediately expect breathtaking panorama's. But think about it: that's actually a good thing as nature clearly still can have the upper ground in this particular region of Belgium, a country where too often bricks have won the battle against the trees in the past!.

Given the trail is a loop, you can find the part of the hike where you'll start descending a little bit further. For your information: the trail itself is very well marked all along the way!


Little creeks everywhere!


In the second half of the hike, you follow another small river, the Chefna, but now downwards. And yes, you guessed it right, this part is at least as much fun as the part where you went upwards. For the more adventurous amongst you, you can once again 'zigzag' yourself over the Chefna to the bottom of the hill. For the less experienced hikers, or if you begin to feel a little bit tired after about 10k walking in nature, a more convenient path is available just next to the Chefna.


These rocks look like a good spot for sunbathing ;-)


And then after about 12k of pure fun in an amazing natural environment, you are almost back at the beginning. The last part consists of 1-2k walking besides the Amblève river (by far the biggest of the 3 mentioned ones). This is a very easy and (almost) flat ending of a beautiful hike!
The Ninglingspo, a river and a walk to remember!




Parking lot near the Ninglinspo pub in the small village of Sedoz, located between Remouchamps and Stoumont.
GPS coordinates: 50.468609 , 5.74354
Parking lot near the Ninglinspo pub in the small village of Sedoz, located between Remouchamps and Stoumont.
GPS coordinates: 50.468609 , 5.74354
14km round trip, roughly 3 - 3,5 hours



Moderate, feasible for children as from 9 years old with some hiking experience






- Follow the blue rectangle sign if you only want to follow the standard Ninglinspo loop (6 km)
- Don't start too late: especially in high-season (July-August) it can be quite crowded mainly on the standard Ninglinspo loop
- Some sturdy hiking shoes are always convenient


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4 comments:

  1. What perfect, beautiful hiking. We loved finding great trails like this all around Europe too. And for some reason we skipped Belgium last time... Time to head back to get lost in the forest!

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    1. You definitely should come back ;-). Belgium is often forgotten when people plan a trip though Europe but we have so much to offer!

      Marlo & Kristof xxx

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  2. I'm glad to hear that this trail is clearly marked - we always seem to get lost while hiking! Though I'm usually at the bars and restaurants in any given city, I'm starting to get more into hiking, so I love learning about new trails. This one in particular looks so tranquil and gorgeous. Love seeing the little creeks everywhere!

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    Replies
    1. So good you're getting more into hikinh Julianne! We've had our best views after hiking... guess you have to work for such a reward :-)

      Marlo & Kristof xxx

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