Antwerp Cool for Kids Hiking in Belgium

Mechels Broek, Mechelen. Quack, honk, screech, trumpet and yelp!

My previous post introduced you to an area (Mollendaal Forest) that is ideal for young children. However, I do not recommend Mechels Broek for young children, nor is the terrain suitable for buggies, push-chairs or wheelchairs. It’s an area of wetland at all times of the year, and particularly in the winter many of the paths are very muddy.

I would definitely recommend it for families with older children though, as on this nature reserve are two publicly accessible bird hides. In my experience, children love creeping up to a bird hide, quietly opening the wooden shutters, and peeking out to see what birds they can see.

Mechels Broek is located just south of Mechelen. The start of your walk is from a small car park next to café Het Brughuis in Muizenhoekstraat, 2812 Muizen. Here’s a map (Map_Mechels_Broek)  which shows you the footpaths through the region and the location of the two bird hides. The slide show below takes you on an illustrated tour of a 6 km walk through and around the nature reserve, including a visit to both bird hides. Boots are not just recommended; they are essential!

At this time of the year the lagoons are full of birds – and noise! Ducks quack and whistle; geese honk, bark and trumpet; gulls screech and yelp. This weekend there were particularly huge numbers of pintail and teal. There was even a white stork there – and they are supposed to be summer migrants! Enjoy your walk, and let me know what you see!

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12 comments on “Mechels Broek, Mechelen. Quack, honk, screech, trumpet and yelp!

  1. Jacques Willems

    Seems to be a very nice walk.
    I’ve a better copy from the map and I’ll send that to you later.
    Greetings,
    Jacques

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  2. I am wondering how far this is from the Leefdale area and if it can be reached by bus/train. Thank you. I enjoy your books and posts.

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    • Cindy, glad you like the blog. There is a train station in Muizen. The train from Leuven takes approx 30 minutes. From there it’s a 15 minute walk to the starting point, so it’s certainly feasible. Let me know how you get on or if you need further info on travel arrangements.

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  3. Thank you for the reply. If possible, could you be more specific. The train/bus system is a mystery to me. I am staying near leefdaal centrum. I believe I can take the 316 into Leuven but where would I get off and what train would I take to get to Muizen. Also, are there signs once I get there to get me to the starting point? Thank you so much for any help you are able to give. I have been enjoying the walks around Leefdaal.

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    • Cindy, there are trains every half-hour from Leuven to Kortrijk, but I recommend the ones leaving from platform 5 in Leuven at 47 minutes past the hour as you don’t have to change at all. Muizen is the seventh stop (Leuven-Wijgmaal-Hambos-Wespelaar-Haacht-Boortmeerbeek-Hever-Muizen). Journey time is 26 minutes. If you look at this map you will see that you have to walk up Stationsberg and then Brugstraat to the start of the walk in Muizenhoekstraat

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  4. Your blog always has great tips! Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I prefer woodlands to wetlands, but I have to confess, those ducklings are irresistible, and I love watching the wading birds in the marshes.

    Liked by 1 person

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