Magnificently autumnal Flanders
The sun is moving closer to the horizon as autumn casts a warm glow over Flanders and its heritage, creating picturesque scenes. The Flemish forests, Bruegel's legacy, world-class cycling and typically Flemish cuisine can all be enjoyed this autumn.
Flanders celebrates its Masters(part 1)
Ghent is synonymous with Jan van Eyck. For almost 600 years his masterpiece, the Ghent Altarpiece, has adorned St. Bavo's Cathedral. This year, the city is celebrating its Master with the city festival OMG! Van Eyck was here. You can continue to discover his universe this autumn. In the St. Nicolas Church, just a stone's throw from the Ghent Altarpiece, Lights on Van Eyck immerses you in a magical, multimedia experience centred on Van Eyck's oeuvre. Kleureyck zooms in on his colour palette, whereas the Seven Senses Tour allows you to taste, smell, hear and feel Jan van Eyck. These events and many others provide the perfect way to learn (more) about one of Flanders' most important artists.
Flanders celebrates its masters (part 2)
You can also get to know Jan van Eyck outside of Ghent. This autumn, in the Dynasty Building in Brussels, he is meeting his colleagues Pieter Bruegel and Peter Paul Rubens, the Flemish Masters. These three artists lived and worked in different time periods and are being introduced to each other for the very first time. In the exciting and innovative Meet The Masters exhibition, 360° projections and state-of-the-art video mapping technologies allow their unique worlds to overlap. Discover the workshops of this artistic trio, where you can watch their masterpieces come to life. The images speak for themselves and a gripping audio play adds an extra dimension.
Flanders, a paradise for ramblers
The leaves change colour and gently release their grip on the trees: autumn has arrived in Flanders and there's no better time for strolling through Flanders' enchanting forests and woodlands. The possibilities are endless. Retreat to bewitching Tillegem Forest in Bruges, brave the challenging slope at Kluis Forest, or discover the ancient trees of historic Sonian Forest, all just a stone's throw from bustling Brussels, where you will also find the celebrated Botanic Garden Meise. The Botanical garden is one of the oldest in the world. Discover nature with your bare feet on the 'Amaze-Your-Feet' Path. Or look for a forest to explore.
Heroes on two wheels
Autumn is the new spring! Due to the coronavirus crisis, Flanders' legendary cycling classics could not take place in spirng. Not to worry, as now cycling fans can enjoy Flanders' steep slopes and challenging cobblestones in autumn instead. From the Brabantse Pijl and Gent-Wevelgem to the Scheldeprijs: the show must go on. And the best is yet to come. On 18 October, the pinnacle of cycling begins: the Tour of Flanders, the day on which ordinary men and women become immortal heroes. Don't miss a moment of this. Want to put your own legs to the test? Discover the wide range of cycling events and feel like a Flemish cycling legend.
Museums from the comfort of your couch
If you can't go to the museum, then the museum will come to you. Thanks to the guided tours in the Stay at Home Museum series, culture lovers had plenty to enjoy during the coronavirus crisis. An expert guided you around an impressive exhibition or collection and all you needed to do was flip open your screen. More episodes are on the way! From mid-October, a new season of these unique tours will begin. You'll be able to pay a virtual visit to museums such as Mayer Van Den Bergh, the Museum of Industry and the Library of the Dukes of Burgundy. The Secrets of the masterpiece The Last Supper by Flemish Primitive, Dirk Bouts, will be revealed and you will also explore the exhibition 'Hans Memling in contemporary art.'
Delicious autumnal delights
Beer, chocolate and frites. These are invariably the first of Flanders' countless culinary riches that spring to mind. And, rightly so! However, this list is no way reflects all that Flanders has to offer. Indeed, the humble endive more than deserves its place amongst them. Instead, as one of the underdogs, it's all too often overlooked despite the fact that endives are a jewel in our culinary crown. Raw, braised, sautéed or grilled, this traditional Belgian winter vegetable is unceasingly sublime. Want to get better acquainted with the endive? Then try this classic Flemish dish: endives wrapped in ham with a mouthwateringly rich cheese sauce. Now is the perfect time as endive season starts in October. Enjoy this delicacy with its touch of bitterness and simultaneously discover the fascinating journey that an endive travels from field to plate, with thanks to Flemish craftsmanship from grower to chef.
Whether it’s walking or cycling, a culinary or artistic masterpiece, or a sober reminder of darker days, Flanders boasts myriad autumnal gems to astound you.
Story created on 21 September 2020