Travelled : 122 kilometres from Arras to Ieper (Ypres), then 36 kilometres from Ieper to Veurne, Belgium
Visited : The Menin Gate in Ieper, Veurne and Diksmuide, all in Western Flanders
Stayed : Ieper Municipal Aire €8, includes electricity N50.83604 E02.90509, then Veurne Municipal Aire for 2 nights, on the canal, limited service but free N51.07021 E02.66626
Budget : 21 days @ €95 per day.
We won’t bore you more than necessary but the cycle rack on the Hymer is showing it’s age, added to the fact that the e-bike are heavier than a normal bike. We had been looking to replace it while we travel through France and today seemed like the day to see what we can find. So we spend a few hours going to different motorhome accessory place near Lille looking at types and availability.
Half a day lost was enough and we decide to head into Belgium and continue the hunt another day. Veurne is about 60 kilometres north-west of Lille and a few kilometres inland so we continue north-west on the A25. But the traffic is heavy and we loose interest in the stress of it all. I see the exit for Armentieres and think lets just make Ieper our target, we don’t have to be anywhere tonight or tomorrow for that matter. We know Ieper well and drive straight to our normal parking spot.
Soon after we arrive a fellow stops his motorcycle nearby and identifies himself as a Policeman and politely states we shouldn’t stay the night here. He is very casual about it and states parking is OK but not sleeping. Anyway he waves goodbye and we think it’s not a great start to Belgium. Anyway we walk up town for a drink and dinner, then watch the ‘last post ceremony’ and go on a waffle hunt.
We head off looking for Belgium Waffles, as you do after the service. We bump into another English campercar couple parked near us when the polite Policeman had words. They have found a new Aire about a kilometre away. So we adjourn to the pub to chat about the campercar life.
We takes the bikes off the Hymer and cycle for a couple of hours on the cycle route that circle Veurne. Most of the cycle routes hear are on dedicated paths, the land is as flat as a pancake, so it a comfortable ride.
It another cool night in Belgium, The weather has been very mild since we crossed the Channel, warm afternoons and cool evenings.
We are cooking breakfast when a fellow traveller comes over to say hello. After breakfast we have a chit chat about the campercar life. Derek is English and immigrated to Australia as a young fellow before returning to England and marrying his Irish wife. They recommend a visit to nearby Diksmuide and the museum.