A walk in the far west of Brussels: Jette and the Poelbos reserve

Walking in nature is considered to be a form of relaxation, a way to set the body in motion and clear the mind. Lev Tolstoy used to go on long walks outside Sebastopol to sharpen the characters in his novels Ana Karenina and War and Peace; Anton Chekhov would stroll along the pier in Yalta to refine the drama in his short stories; James Salter never left home without his notebook and a pen whenever he went on his beach walks in Montauk, New York.

For the people who like to be close to nature and explore a different side to Brussels, a unique opportunity has arisen thanks to Bruxelles Bavard ASBL: On Sunday, July 29th, a nature walk will be organized in the western outskirts of the Brussels.

The walking tour will start outside the Jette train station, at the Cardinal Mercier train station, and the tour includes a stroll through the different parts of the King Baldwin Park (Parc Roi Baudouin), not far from the Jette cemetery and along the Molenbeek valley (Molen in Dutch meaning mill, beek meaning creek).

Moleenbeek bos

Thereafter hikers get to experience the highlight of this walk: the Poelbos Natural Reserve, usually closed to the public. This natural reserve comprises an expansive line of fields and forests in the north-west of Brussels, in the municipalities of Jette and Ganshoren. Considered an important green space in Brussels, the reserve has an area of more than 120 hectares, a sanctuary where a wide variety of animals find a home, especially birds. The walk of about 10 km is led by an experienced nature guide who has the key to enter the forest.

Poelbos walk
Poelbos walk

Additional points of interest include the Bee Gardens and the Gallo-Roman Villa in Jette. Participants will also get to see and walk on the Green Path towards Zavelenberg, characterized by the extensive prairies that lie open just in front of the Basilix shopping mall.

The return segment will be towards the Molenbeek in Kattebroek, continuing further on in the direction of the Wilder woods and the site of Scheutbos where one can breathe in and smell the wide open space of the Pajottenland. 

The walk is scheduled to end towards 18h on the terrace of the Café De Linde, a cold beer in one’s hand, admiring the rustle of leaves of a magnificent old linden tree.

Good to know:

The walking tour on July 29th is fully booked but a new date will likely be added to the calendar. More info and booking via Bruxelles Bavard site.