Inspiration for local low carbon adventures in Europe: Travelling by train, bike, walking, kayak and other alternatives. From micro-adventures to big adventures. Most trips are focused around our hometown Brussels, but can certainly be reached or done from other locations as well.
You want to go for a good hike in the woods (with or without snow)? You’re looking for the magic of the first snow in the Ardennes?
Chances of hiking in the snow are bigger the more you go to the South of Belgium. So in January earlier this year we took a train from Bruxelles-Luxembourg, made a switch in Namur and continued until Gedinne. The switch in Namur was just long enough for Carmel, Hanne and Tine to grab a coffee to continue our breakfast on the train while enjoying the view. The route between Namur and Gedinne is particularly beautiful with views on the Maas and Lesse. Even if you would not get off, it’s worth going just for the sightseeing part from the train.
When we arrived in Gedinne we started walking towards the East, following some small paths that were shown on Komoot (hiking app), towards the “Monument pour les morts de Maquis”. We just tracked time and made a random loop in the woods so that we could do a 3 hour hike and get back at the same station afterwards. It’s best to take a picknick, since we actually did not see a single restaurant or shop for the whole hike. If you make your tour bigger you could build in a stop at one of the gites around, but best to check in advance if they serve food at noon.
It’s an easy and beautiful trip. Make sure to buy the weekend ticket or your NMBS Multi card and prepare a nice breakfast and lunch picknick.
Imagine you want to do a good brainstorm on a new idea or startup. You want to do an offsite and combine teambuilding, meetings, brainstorm and some adventure. What do you need?
So why bother spending money and effort on all the rest? Take a backpack with the minimum and start walking along your closest GR route. And that’s what we did. Just keep walking.
Our goal: take the first steps in launching a new night train operator. In our backpack: sleeping bag, water and some food. No tent, no mattress, no unnecessary fancy camping gear. We started following some signs in a park in Forrest (Brussels) on Friday. We stopped walking on Sunday afternoon somewhere deep in the nature south of Brussels.
Without any known destinations all that counts is the trip itself, so plenty of time to talk, sit down, take notes, challenge ideas, make some back of the envelop calculations and define next steps.
The process is so powerful that we actually decided that each new recruit we take on board should join us on a hike before we make any recruitment decision: a hike gives you time to talk, listen, think, see how a person behaves in challenging situations, how a person behaves in a team, etc.
The railway company is still under investigation. We are currently finalising the first business plan, have made the first good contacts in the industry, found good sleeping cars, a shortlist of potential investors and some very very passionate people willing to support building this dream: Travel slow, Feel every moment. The future of travelling happens overnight.