Lake Eupen

Driving Around In The High Fens

High Fens is the English word for the region that we in Dutch call “Hoge Venen” and in French “Hautes Fagnes”. According to Wikipedia:

The High Fens (French: Hautes Fagnes; German: Hohes Venn; Dutch: Hoge Venen), which were declared a nature reserve in 1957, are an upland area, a plateau region in the province of Liège, in the east of Belgium and adjoining parts of Germany, between the Ardennes and the Eifel highlands. The High Fens are the largest nature reserve or park in Belgium, with an area of 4,501.2 hectares (11,123 acres); it lies within the German-Belgian natural park Hohes Venn-Eifel (700 square kilometres (270 sq mi)), in the Ardennes. Its highest point, at 694 metres (2,277 ft) above sea level, is the Signal de Botrange near Eupen, and also the highest point in Belgium. A tower 6 metres (20 ft) high was built here that reaches 700 metres (2,297 ft) above sea level.[1][2] The reserve is a rich ecological endowment of Belgium covered with alpine sphagnumraised bogs (not “fens” as the name would imply) both on the plateau and in the valley basin; the bogs, which are over 10,000 years old, with their unique subalpine flora, fauna and microclimate, are key to the conservation work of the park.[3][4]

Once you leave Eupen, you find yourself in this gorgeous area of Belgium. Last year, Lars and I tried to have a look at this area with public transport and we only saw a small part of it. But in May of this year, we finally had a chance to drive around and admire the landscape.

We started our excursion in St. Vith, a small town that somehow failed to impress us. Instead, we chose to explore the area of small villages such as Hornsfeld, Schönberg, Oudler and Crombach. The scenery was simply breathtaking.

I also took some pictures at Worriken, a sports and holiday centre at the artificial Butgenbach Lake.

Butgenbach itself is charming. Unfortunately, I could only take one picture because it suddenly started raining quite hard.

A lot of people – including most Belgians – think that Belgium’s highest waterfall is located at Coo. This is actually the widest waterfall of Belgium, whereas the highest is to be found in Richardstein. However, the hike proved to be too difficult for us. Luckily, the surroundings proved to be quite picturesque. The area is also known for its castle, which we did not visit.

At another occasion, Lars and I found ourselves at Lake Eupen, an artificial lake created by a dam called the Wesertalsperre. Weser (Vesdre in French) is the name of the nearby river.

Although the lake looks very inviting, its content is used as drinking water and swimming is therefore forbidden. I am actually not sure whether the man you can see sailing on some of the pictures is doing anything illegal or not…

3 Comments

  • unclerave June 10, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    Very picturesque and serene, Kitten! — YUR

    Reply
  • Resa June 11, 2017 at 12:03 am

    Wonderful!

    Reply

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