Unless you’re a seasoned off-roader or simply up for a challenge, cycling through a full-on forest would usually be something you might avoid. But now consider the prospect of making the journey ten metres up, on a flashy new bike trail that brings you to eye level with the forest canopy. This 700-metre-long track in Belgium lets cyclists do just that.
The ‘Cycling through the Trees’ project is the latest addition to a vast, fast-expanding cycling network in the bike-mad region of Limburg, on the Dutch border. The super-stylish, three-metre-wide, weathered-steel trail rises off the ground from surrounding paths, eventually bringing cyclists level with the treetops. There, they’ll be able to take in sweeping views of the rest of the beautiful Bosland forest and the Pijnven nature reserve below.
Designed by Belgian studios BuroLandschap and De Gregorio & Partners, the path forms part of Limburg’s wider push to become a pioneer in cycling tourism – and has just won ‘infrastructure project of the year’ at the Dezeen Awards 2020.
It follows a linked ‘Cycling through Water’ project, which ran through a pond with water at eye level on either side, in nearby Bokrijk. Next year, a ‘Cycling through the Heathland’ trail will also open in Hoge Kempen National Park. Altogether, the region now has more than 2,000 kilometres of paved (and mostly car-free) cycling paths. So if you were thinking about heading abroad for a big ol’ post-lockdown cycling holiday next year, you know one place that’ll be very happy to have you.
Did you know you’ll soon be able to cycle from Paris to the seaside, thanks to a new bike path?
Also coming up: a dreamy new bike trail that will let you cycle all the way around Italy’s Lake Garda.