Éislek : a top quality destination

Forests, rivers and lakes define the culture of the northern Éislek region in the Luxembourgish Ardennes hills. With its sweeping views, castles on rocky outcrops, and attractive, authentic villages, this is a beautiful place to explore on foot. Whether you enjoy energetic hikes or relaxed strolls, there are several way-marked walks for you that you can reach by car, bus, rail or bike. As well as many types of accommodation, the region has a full choice of attractive restaurants, cafés and bars.

Clear way-marking and well defined footpaths make it easy for walkers to enjoy the stunning views and attractions. There are trails for people of all ages, whether alone or in a group. You’ll also have the chance to meet local people, as well as discovering local culinary specialities in the country’s diverse range of restaurants. In the winter, round off a strenuous hike with a warming glass of mulled wine beside an open fire. This has been the essence of Luxembourgish hospitality for hundreds of years.

All your needs will be catered for, whether walking on your own or in a group. There are also other activities to enjoy. This is an excellent place for cycling, whether by road, on dedicated paths, or cross-country using mountain bikes. There are many outlets around the country where you can hire the necessary equipment.

That is of course, if you need a change from the country’s high quality hiking options. For example, there are the “Premiumwege” cross-border trails in the “NaturWanderPark delux” park. Alternatively take the “Ecapardenne Lee Trail” and the “Eislek Trail”, both of which have been recognised as “Leading Quality Trails - Best of Europe”.

The Escapardenne Lee Trail features 104km/65 miles of path across the north of the country. Ambitious walkers can cover this in one or two days, but you might also like to make this a more relaxing five day expedition. Hostels and hotels are conveniently located along the trail, enabling you to tailor the itinerary to suit you. If you don’t fancy carrying your own bag when hiking, use one of the several luggage transfer services.

This and other hikes are clearly way-marked in both directions. Topographic guides and hiking maps add extra assistance, enabling you to walk without worry about losing your way. You can make it easier still with geo-localisation applications using GPS.

Add an extra dimension by following one of the many thematic trails that take in cultural and historical sites. Alternatively, there are attractions such as the sonorous trail in Hoscheid (6.5km/4 miles). It features specially created musical instruments that are free to use as the forest is explored. This is a particular favourite with children.

Other routes will bring you face-to-face with Luxembourg’s often tragic history. For example, on one walk you will stumble upon the wreck of a World War II Allied bomber. Alternatively, experience authentic historic villages, often located near attractive river valleys. Many of these paths can be reached by the extensive national rail network, and specially designed trails take you from railway station to railway station.

For tips on where to go, the Regional Tourist Office of the Luxembourg Ardennes (www.visit-eislek.lu) is there for you. For example, why not stay at a farm as a base for your walking holiday? This is a great experience, especially for kids who have grown up in towns and suburbs.

In the framework of the LEADER “Qualitéitswanderregioun Éislek”, a hiking trail quality charter has been created and is supported by 24 local authorities, 34 tourist offices and two natural parks. This charter uses way-marked-walk assessment criteria developed by the internationally respected German hiking federation the “Deutscher Wanderverband”. As well as the hikes themselves, they measure the quality of nearby hotels, hostels, camping sites and host farms. This ensures that walkers will enjoy their time in Luxembourg.

For more information, please visit: http://www.visitluxembourg.com/en/where-to-go/the-ardennes-and-their-natural-parks

Publication date
16 October 2017
Author
Luxembourg for Tourism
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