Hello tourist! Are you interested in visiting Belgium but wondering where to start your tour from? You should not worry anymore because we got you sorted. Ypres is a good starting point with recreational centers, beautiful sites to view and outdoor activities to engage in. Furthermore, there are picnic spots for a family time among other venues to host you and your peers. Most of the things will cost you affordable fees while others are free. There is a lot to be done including learning the place’s culture, enjoying their local cuisines among other activities. Tour with me!
See Also: Best Things to do in Mons, Belgium
1. Visit the Tyne Cot memorial
You must be wondering what you’ll be doing at a cemetery. Tyne Cot is not your normal tomb. It is a unique and respected world over. Why is this place appreciated while it only carries the dead?
Here’s the reason. Tyne Cot is the world’s largest memorial for war victims. It carries bodies of the Belgian heroes who lost their lives in the first world war defending what belonged to them.
The memorial carries thousands of bodies of victims of the deadly first world war. They gave up their lives to save the rest of the Belgians.
Your visit here will serve two purposes. The main reason you’re visiting is this is one of the things you’ll be doing as a tourist. The second purpose is to show respect and appreciation of the legends. It may get emotional but you’ll be good. Just stay strong.
Apart from the history of this place harbors, the graveyard is beautiful in appearance and well maintained. The grasses are green with no traces of dry grass. The lively grass is complemented with bricks housing the dead. Flowers are there too, creating a perfect scenery for your view.
2. Cloth Hall
There are rules all tourists abide by whether consciously or subconsciously. One rule is you only visit a place if it has an impact on your five senses. If a place or building is beautiful, it will touch your eyes.
On the other hand, if it’s soothing music, it will touch your ears. The same applies to your smell and touch. Cloth Hall has a way of touching most of your senses.
Cloth Hall will touch your sight the most. You’ll be left wondering where on earth has this beautiful building been. The Cloth Hall is specially and uniquely designed to match its status as a museum.
The building also serves as a commercial building. As the name suggests, expect cloth businesses inside. Otherwise, the building is worth your afternoon.
3. Take your kids to Bellewaerde for fun
Ypres has many places to take your kids to for enjoyment. Bellewaerde is one of them. Found in 1954, the theme park has been around for quite some time now.
Be sure your children will appreciate it. The merry-go-rounds and toddler slides will make their days. Apart from the kid’s adventure, there are adult escapades too. From shows to caves and wild game, Bellewaerde has everything a tourist would want.
4. Have a beer moment at Brouwerij de Sint-Sixtusabdij van Westvleteren
Don’t mind the complicated name of this fantastic brewery. This is the place to have a taste of one of the sweetest beers in the country.
Book early for faster service. There are also guest rooms just in case you want to spend your night there. Food is also available, although the options are limited. It is a wonderful experience!
5. Spend your nights in Yoake
Once you land in Ypres, you need a place to rest and spend your nights for the rest of your days in the city. Yoake is the destination. Booking for a room here can happen online. The hotel is affordable and offers first-class services.
What makes this hotel stand out? There is free Wi-Fi available and each room has a TV set with the remote in your hands. You will be free to select which program you want.
Also available is a fridge for storage of your perishable foods. That is not all. There is no way cold will hit you with the fireplace in the Yoake rooms.
For gamers, there is a special room for you with a PlayStation. It is just amazing. The hotel is also strategically located. It is close to many Belgian sites and fun bearing activities.
6. Wake up to Menin Gate
This memorial site is only 1000 meters from your resident hotel, Yoake. That makes it easy to get here and back to your hotel. Therefore, there will be no need to worry about logistics as you may choose to take a walk to the gate and back.
This is another wholesome place to be. There is a gift shop where you will find beautiful souvenirs to take home with you. Carry enough money just in case you find some mementos pricey.
The Menin Gate is home to graves of tens of thousands of victims of the first world war. That is why the last post occurs regularly as commemoration during which time silence is observed.
7. Visit Flanders Field
While in your hotel at Yoake, it is only a walking distance to get to this cemetery. It is only five minutes away if you choose to walk.
Seemingly, Ypres was profoundly affected by World War one. Perhaps that is the reason it has many memorial graves. Flanders field is one of them.
The memorial is well maintained and for a moment, you won’t think it is a graveyard. There is so much history written in this place alone.
To start off, you may pass by the visitor’s center and spend some time there watching a memorial video. Again, the whole Flanders field experience is emotional, but worth it.
Just like the locals do, don’t forget to carry with your flowers to appreciate the heroes. Visiting this field should not take your whole day but only a part of it. The activities to do here are not much other than the video and viewing the graves.
8. Away from emotions and into fun – The Old Bill Pub
There’s so much emotion in visiting memorial parks. That is why you need to finish your day in style. How else if not through getting tipsy at The Old Bill Pub.
The club opens at 6 pm. This gives you the whole day to prepare yourself for the nightlife. This activity will be more enjoyable if you bring your friends along. No kids, please.
There are bar games and nice drinks. Drink yourself up but responsibly. It is important to mind your health as you take down dozens of bottles of beer. Figure out how you’ll get back home or to your hotel.
It is important not to drink and drive. Your life is more important.
9. Go Shopping
Every town has a unique thing they sell. For instance, in Ypres, there exist many chocolate shops. Leonidas, De Groote and ‘t Hemelryck are great examples of chocolate shops. Here, you will find all the chocolate flavors you’ve ever wished for.
Supposing you want to buy more than just snacks, there’s a shopping mall in the name of Opt Spoor you may consider. Located in Grachtstraat 17A, you will find there most of the things you desire.
If you are a beer addict, the Chez Marie is your place. Buy as many bottles as your thirst demands. Well, you may also choose to surprise your woman by buying her clothes at PIMKIE. It is one of the leading boutiques in Ypres dealing in ladies’ wear.
10. Eat at Klein Stadhuis
At one point in your stay in Ypres, you’ll have the urge to taste Belgian food. There are many eateries but some offer the best dishes including local cuisines. Klein Stadhuis is one of the special restaurants in Ypres offering world-class services on top of nicely prepared foods.
The hotel is well maintained and that alone will make you salivate more. The aroma of the food being prepared and served will hit you at the entrance, unsettling your taste buds. There is a wide variety available giving you the freedom to choose what you like.
The staff is also friendly. Feel free to consult them in case you do not have an idea of what to eat. They have tasted the foods and they know what dish you will enjoy eating.
11. Camping in YPRA
Your tour in Ypres is not complete if you have not camped in YPRA. The prices are affordable with fun-filled activities.
You’ll love your stay, the foods, the serene environment and the company of fellow camping enthusiasts. The showers are in perfect working condition and the place well maintained. This activity among others, you never forget the great Ypres.
12. Take a tour of Ypres
It is exciting to share your experience of places you’ve visited. It is more fun if you have the details in your fingerprints. That is why you need to do a familiarity tour round the city of Ypres.
Take note of the streets, avenues and junctions. Furthermore, mark the buildings and how close or distant they are located from each other.
As you do this tour you may bump into another activity to do. Perhaps an activity I forgot to tell you. Some events happen impromptu and that is why this city tour is important. You may meet an upcoming artiste doing a free show at the streets among other activities.
The decision to have your tour using a taxi or by foot is yours. Although, you are likely to find it more exciting if you do it by foot. Use a taxi if you wish to tour far places.
13. Go swimming at pool Leper
This is a two-hour activity you will enjoy. The pool is well maintained and experiences visitors all year round.
It is a good way to relax and lay stress off. The water’s temperature is just right for your body. Lane swimming is available allowing you and your peers to stage swimming competitions. The size of the pool is just right for a considerable amount of people. Be sure to have a moment of your life.
14. Go to church at St. George’s Memorial
It is important to carry your spiritualism with you to Ypres. Well, whether you are a Christian or not, this is worth your time.
For the spiritual, take a visit to this memorial church for prayers. For others, you may go to Saint George’s to have a view of the building and appreciate the design used in its construction.
The little church is also a historical center dating ages ago. It carries the location’s history. The members are warm and welcoming. Engage them and you will learn so much about the church and Ypres at large.
15. Pass by Yper museum
This history bearing museum is also known as Leper museum. If you have kids, bring them along for they will find pleasure in this special museum.
The fees are affordable with special discounts given on family tickets. The place is well maintained with a modern taste. Boredom is the last thing you expect once you get here.
The beauty about this place is it does not get crowded at any particular time. This gives you ample space to have fun and entertain yourself.
The kids will enjoy it more if they find fellow kids present. Yper Museum will teach you every bit of Ypres history.
Ypres is undoubtedly a fine tourist destination. Other than learning the place’s history through visits to its many museums, the place has countless numbers of destinations for both indoor and outdoor activities. During festive seasons, expect other tourists to flock in, making the place busy and crowded to a considerable level. In conclusion, Ypres is a hub of fun-filled activities. The former battlefield has seen a transformation into a beautiful city with attractions worth your time and money. This article has highlighted 15 things to do in Ypres. You will find it thrilling.