Premium Routes

Two hikes in ‘Pietersheim’ recognised as Premium Routes

Two hikes in ‘Pietersheim’ recognised as Premium Routes

The hiking area of 'Pietersheim', with the 'Waterburcht' (water castle) and 'Pietersheim' petting zoo as the southernmost gate to the Hoge Kempen National Park (Lanaken), was in need of renovation after 10 years. The routes were inspected and adapted in consultation with all parties involved. This renewal was realised by the Regionaal Landschap Kempen en Maasland, thanks to the financial support of the municipality of Lanaken, the Province of Limburg, Tourism Flanders and the Agency for Nature and Forests. The result is a beautiful and varied network of 8 routes, together accounting for 38 km. 

As the cherry on the cake, two walks in this area received the 'Premium route' hiking hallmark on 20 October 2016, a first for Belgium! Premium routes are hikes that have been assessed by route scouts of the renowned 'Deutsches Wanderinstitut' according to strict quality criteria, both with regard to the quality of the surrounding landscape and the quality of the paths.

‘Pietersheim’ Bos & ‘Pietersheim’ Heide

The ‘Pietersheim’ Forest Route (red hike from ‘Waterburcht’ (water castle) to ‘Pietersheim’) leads you through the dense pine forests, old beech tree-lined avenues and the vastness of ‘Pietersembos’, the charming Asbeek brings extra variety and the newly constructed timber path allows you to explore this piece of land with dry feet.

Further north, you will find the valuable areas ‘Zijpbeek’ Valley and ‘Neerharerheide’. Along the 'Pietersheim' Heide route (the purple loop from La Butte aux Bois), you can expect to find fragrant shrubs, beautiful views, tranquillity and space in one of the quietest and most beautiful spots in the National Park.

Both routes will also introduce you to the fruits of the efforts of the Nature and Forest Agency in the form of more and better nature.

Through the original and handy system of hiking switches, the two routes can be combined into a challenging day trip of 21.8 km.

New hiking map!

This renewed area is, of course, also included in a new hiking map! The completely new hiking map is for sale for € 2.5 through the webshop or at all entrance gates of the Hoge Kempen National Park and the tourist information points in the area.