Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel Crossing the Channel

Crossing the Channel

The first stage of the Route goes from Canterbury to Brussels. Starting in the cathedral city of Canterbury the route makes its way to the coast and the port of Dover along pleasant rural lanes through the Kentish countryside.Local attractions along the way include medieval Dover Castle, Samphire Hoe nature reserve and the famous Canterbury Cathedral which was founded in 597 AD and forms a World Heritage Site along with the Anglo-Saxon St Martin’s Church and the ruins of St Augustine’s Abbey.

After a (hopefully calm) crossing of the channel between Dover and Calais you arrive in northern France where EV5 goes through the town and on to the Canal de Calais to Saint Omer, signed as LF1. St Omer is an attractive cathedral town of wide streets and spacious squares and from here the route continues to Lens, one of the main towns of the Hauts-de-France region, and then to Lille, former European Capital of Culture and home to the Basilique-cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-la-Treille, a wonderful art deco City hall and the Grand Place in Lille city centre.

After leaving Lille, nicknamed the "Capital of Flanders" in France, you will follow the pleasant greenway along the Roubaix canal before entering Belgian territory. With little canal locks, drawbridges and the sound of water along the way, the route meanders gently through Wallonia and Flanders, following the Espierre canal and then the Escaut river. Next to Avelgem, you will then cross the river in direction of the Natural Park called "Parc Naturel du Pays des Collines et des Ardennes flamandes". It is located in a hilly region, but, the Wallonian greenways use former railway lines so the route is flat. The route takes you first to Renaix/Ronse and then Lessines, two cities proud of their heritage of the Flemish Rennaissance. EV5 then follows the Dendre river to the historic centre of Grammont/Geraardsbergen at the heart of the famous Tour of Flanders cycling race. There you will join the famous Knooppunten system of Flanders and cycle route LF6-Vlaanderen Fietsroute which leads you to the south of Brussels. From there, EV5 carries you through the picturesque villages of the Pajottenland, renowned for its local beers, which have a fruity taste. After a tasting on the Grote Markt in Halle, you head towards the Senne valley which will accompany you to the capital of Europe. In Brussels, you pass in front of all the well-known monuments, from the Grand Place to the European Parliament.

  • St Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury

    Marking the rebirth of Christianity in southern England, the abbey was founded around AD 597 by St Augustine. Situated outside the city walls, the abbey was originally created as a burial place for the Anglo-Saxon kings of Kent.Together with the Canterbury Cathedral and the St. Martin’s church, St. Augustine’s Abbey is part of the Canterbury World Heritage Site. At the Abbey, it is also possible to visit a museum and to enjoy a free audio tour.

  • Westgate Towers Museum

    The Westgate is a medieval gatehouse approximately 18m high and is the largest surviving city gate in England. Built of Kentish ragstone c1380, it is the last surviving of Canterbury's 7 medieval gates, one of Canterbury's iconic landmarks. The Tower is a scheduled ancient monument and Grade I listed. Visitors can explore its rich history and take in the spectacular views of the city from the battlements viewpoint. Also part of the museum are the original felons' cells built c1830 in the goal extension and the c1907 police station cells on the ground floor as part of The Pound Bar & Kitchen. You can get a unique view of Westgate Tower and Bridge by taking a punt trip on the River Stour.

  • St Martin's Church, Canterbury (UNESCO World Heritage Site)

    The St Martin’s Church dates back to the 6th century. When St. Augustine came to Canterbury in AD 597, the church served as his first base. The modest Church of St Martin has been and is still used for Christian worship for over 1400 years now and is therefore the oldest Church in England. Together with the Canterbury Cathedral and St. Augustine’s Abbey, St Martin’s Church is part of the Canterbury World Heritage Site.

  • Dover Castle

    Dover Castle is the oldest fort in England. Originally strengthened from an Anglo-Saxon fort in 1066 by William the Conqueror with further additions made by Henry II and Henry VIII. This castle is not an example of how Kings and Queens lived but concentrates on its role as a fort and the battles that it has endured. Visitors can experience the siege of 1216 by Louis VIII of France, discover the labyrinth of secret wartime tunnels built under Dover’s white cliffs and walk through the rooms where the miracle of Dunkirk was planned. Visitors can also see the Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment Museum, one of the best-preserved Roman lighthouses in Europe and the most complete Saxon church in Kent

  • Certified EuroVelo Route
  • Developed route with EuroVelo signs
  • Developed route
  • Route under development
  • Route at the planning stage

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