Travelog

FROM The man in the front seat / September 21, 2015

Ypres

Population 35,000 Ypres, this once a market town, is today known for the incredible events of WW1. Lying on a salient the area was fought over for 4 solid years between 1914 – 1918 by the Germans and the Allied forces. As a result the city is the scene of the moving Last Post ceremony which is performed each evening to remember those who gave their lives in the name of Freedom. History Ypres was originally founded as a market town in the Middle Ages. It prospered greatly, particularly in […]

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FROM The man in the front seat / September 21, 2015

Antwerp

Population 510,000 Located on the river Scheldt and linked to the North Sea by the Westerschelde Estuary, Antwerp is one of Belgium’s oldest city and dominated with incredible squares building’s and squares which give a constant reminder of its greatness. With its Roman foundations the city prospered from the silting up of the Zwin river in Bruges when many of the foreign trading houses moved there. By the 15th century the city was one of the largest in Europe and it port continued to grow to the point where today […]

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FROM The man in the front seat / July 18, 2014

Guide to Belgian Beer

Belgium is home to some 125 breweries which between them produce approximately 500 standard beers but it is it’s the ‘Special Brews’, many of them one offs, which put the Belgian brew on the Beer map. When we include these Special brews the total number of Belgian beers is up around 8700. A few terms to help you to decide Types of Beer Trappist Beers Are beers brewed in a Trappist monastery For a beer to qualify for this category, the entire production process must be carried out by, or supervised […]

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FROM The man in the front seat / June 26, 2013

Atomium (Brussels)

Every European city has a monument that is a symbol of the city; Paris with its Eiffel Tower, Rome has its Colosseum and Brussels has…the Atomium. Constructed in 1958 for the World Expo, the Atomium stands 102m (335ft) high and it forms the shape a iron crystal atom magnified 165 billion times. The nine spheres measure 9m (18ft) in diameter and are made of stainless steel along with the tubes connecting them that form the edges of a cube. The tubes contain lifts that give access exhibition rooms with the […]

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FROM The man in the front seat / June 25, 2013

Westvleteren Brewery – we are monks, not brewers

A journey to Belgium wouldn’t be complete without two important things, chocolate and beer…preferably not at the same time. One of the most unique breweries is Westvleteren, located inside the Trappist Abbey of Saint Sixtus of Westvleteren, not far from Ypres. The brewery produces three beers one of which, Westervleteren XII, is widely regarded by beer aficionados as “the best beer in the world”. The beers are not brewed for commercial sale and as a consequence the supply is limited with sales occurring from the doors of the monastery on […]

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FROM The man in the front seat / June 24, 2013

The Battle of Messines

The Battle of Messines begun on June 7, 1917 and last a week until June 14. The offensive was an assault to capture the German defensives on a ridge running south of Ypres and also to draw German soldiers to Flanders from the Arras and Aisne Fronts and thus relieve pressure on the French soldiers who were struggling at the time. The battle begun at 3.10am with detonation of 19 mines which was followed by a creeping barrage, artillery fire that slowing creeps forward, for some 640m (700ft) which allowed […]

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