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Domain d'Ursel

  • Author: Trailexplorer
  • Walking enthusiast

Domain d'Ursel

This walk in Klein-Brabant goes through the former domains of the d'Ursel family, over the Scheldt dike and along wet grass and hay lands. Along the edge of Hingene it goes through an open landscape with fields to a beautiful nature reserve on the Eikerheide.

Distance: 13 km.

Time: 3h30.

Grade: Moderate.

Type: Circular.

Gps Track: Yes.

Route description: Yes.

Wheelchair: Not suitable.

Dog: Allowed.

Height gain: Flat.

Trail: Paved and unpaved.

Marking: Walking nodes.

Hiking shoes recommended.


Through the Land of Silent Waters.

The walk goes through the domain of the castle d'Ursel to the Notelaardreef, this cobblestone road is a dike that was constructed after the flood disaster of 1953 and divides the polder into two parts: the Schelland polder and the Hingenebroek polder. You arrive at the Scheldt dike and immediately see the statue "The Countess of the dike" that refers to a novel by Maria Gevers. On the Scheldt dike you walk past the De Notelaer pavilion that served as a hunting pavilion and festive reception area for the noble d’Ursel family. You further follow the Scheldt dike with on the left beautiful views of the underlying wet grasslands wooded with poplars and willows from the Groot Schoor. On the right you occasionally have a beautiful view of the Scheldt. You leave the dike and you soon arrive at the Klein and Groot Kragewiel. A "wheel" is a scar of a flood after a dike breach. A deep flush hole was made just behind the breach. The shape is usually circular, hence the name "wheel". You now go through wet grasslands and willow forests with beautiful pollard willows and fields back to the edge of Hingene. You walk through a more open landscape in the direction of the Eikerheide. There is not much to see of heather here, and I could not trace the origin of the name either. You continue through a piece of wooded area with meadows. Once you get out of this beautiful piece of nature it goes through an open landscape with fields back to the starting point.

Domain d'Ursel

Download PDF for nodes to follow.

On the second part there is some noise pollution from the N16 motorway.

Map & Poi's.

POI 1 - Castle d’Ursel.

The castle d'Ursel was the favorite country retreat of the family since 1608 and took its current shape in the 18th century. It remained in the possession of the d'Ursel family for almost 400 years until the then duke was forced to sell the castle in 1973. Since 1994 the building has been owned by the province of Antwerp and has been given a cultural purpose.

Kasteel d'Ursel.

POI 2 - De Notelaer Pavilion.

The pavilion was erected at the end of the eighteenth century in a neoclassical style. It served as a hunting pavilion and festive reception room for the noble d’Ursel family. The pavilion belonged to their castle domain in Hingene and was used to receive guests with a view of the Scheldt. Wolfgang-Guillaume d’Ursel used the internationally renowned French court architect Charles De Wailly (1730-1798) to design this neoclassical pavilion.

De Notelaer.