Great War Scheldeland

Walking through the war years

Walk 100 years back in time with three theme routes through the WWI history of Aalst, Dendermonde and Liezele.

Discover the walking routes

Aalst, very hard occupation (5 km)

  • About the invasion of German troops, hard life during the occupation and the construction of a beautiful city park in times of war.
  • Walk from the Grote Markt in Aalst, where the hated German 'Meldeamt' was located, past many memories of life during the German occupation.
  • Go past the former Red Cross station on the Graanmarkt, the Sint-Martinus church and the towpath along the Dender River, where heavy battles were fought.
  • Be sure to visit the city park. You'll find the Melkhuisje, a cosy brasserie with a terrace that overlooks the playground.

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Dendermonde, a ruin on the Scheldt and Dender Rivers (4.2 km)

  • About the total destruction of an age-old city.
  • Dendermonde is one of the seven Belgian 'Martyr Cities' where German troops wrecked havoc in August and September 1914.
  • You start at the Grote Markt and walk past the courthouse, the war monument on the Heldenplein, the Brusselse Poort (where German troops entered the city) and past the Nieuw Kwartier, a lovely green area of Dendermonde.

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Liezele, a ghost town around the fort (8 km)

  • About the burning of Liezele, the battle for the fort, and the bitter war years in total poverty.
  • Fort Liezele is one of the best preserved forts of the 'Stelling van Antwerpen', a double belt of forts and bulwarks that were built to defend the National Reduit.
  • From the fort you walk to the centre of the village, Schemelbert Mill, the Wolfs chapel, Hof ter Bollen and the place where the temporary church of Liezele stood.
  • Specially for 100 years Great War you can walk in Fort Liezele with an audio guide.

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