Hello everybody, I hope you're all right!
For those of you who don't know me, my name is Laurie, I have an Instagram page (@goodmorninglau) on which I try to approach everything ecological with a critical mind and humour. I also write on a collaborative blog (goodgirls.be) in the green category. We're talking about zero waste, ethical fashion, eco-renovation and lots of other cool things.
Today I'm back with a subject that I haven't talked about here yet but which is one of my favorite subjects: slow travel.
For a few years now, I've been reviewing my way of consuming and I was the kind of person who consumed a lot of travel. Like everyone else, I was a bit of a globetrotter, I had an inexplicable need to fly away to have the feeling of traveling and escape. And so, I used the plane without thinking, without considering the flight as a trip but just as a way to get to a place that seemed better than my region.
Needless to say, airplane flights emit a lot of greenhouse gases and therefore CO2. Count 5 tons for a round trip Brussels-Bali, you're going to say « so what? » Well, 5 tons of CO2 is the annual footprint of a citizen of a modest family from Western Europe. The annual footprint consumed in 15 hours by plane, incredible, isn't it? it's a pity.
I'm not going to play the ignorance card, I was aware that buying a plane ticket had such a bad impact, I just didn't measure my stupidity by thinking that it was the only way to cut with my daily life and escape. At the age of 25, I finally understand that it is useless to go far to get some fresh air. I am slowly but surely beginning to measure my chance to be a Belgian citizen and even better : a European citizen, and that the adventure is only at the end of the road.
I am surely not blaming you if you take the plane, I was like you and I still will be, I have not yet given up on travelling outside Europe. However, I use the airplane more thoughtfully and consciously.
That is why I have decided to propose to you today to see if the grass is not greener at home. What if we went on holiday at home? What if we could get away a few miles away, by train, bus, bike?
Belgium is full of exotic possibilities, I'm myself a big fan of our Belgian Ardennes. And if you've already seen it all (so you're 89 years old), France is only a few kilometres away and will give you even more of a change of scenery.
We left with my family for 4 days in Saint-Hubert, 1h30 by train from Brussels, 45min by car from my parents' house (I am from the beautiful area of Nandrin). We were able to rest in a gîte lost in the woods, we went for walks and enjoyed ourselves.
I've talked enough about me, I propose you in this article 3 "hidden gems" of our beautiful Belgium, in collaboration with Morgane Debondt (@morganedebondt on instagram) who loves to find exotic and accessible places from our beautiful capital. She goes there either by train or she rents a cambio shared car for the day.
The Abbey of Villers
This magnificent Abbey is only an hour and a half by train from Brussels. It is a former Cistercian abbey located in the commune of Villers-la-Ville, an important part of the heritage of Wallonia. Founded in 1146, the abbey was abandoned in 1796. Most of the site has since fallen into ruins.
There are even concerts that are organised there during the summer, the atmosphere is super nice.
The Kasteel Van Horst
Situated on the edge of a lake, the Kasteel van Horst is one of the most beautiful medieval castles in Belgium. Surrounded by the beautiful rural landscapes of Flemish Brabant, it is the ideal place for a hike and finish with a picnic with a view of the castle. It is located at 1h10 from Brussels.
At 1 hour by train from Brussels, near Mechelen, the Mechels Broek marshes offer an incredible fauna and flora. This nature reserve is perfect for a change of scenery and yet close to the city.
I hope that these 3 Belgian places will make you want to explore our flat country and try slow travel.
With these beautiful words, I'll see you soon for a new article and give you a kiss,
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