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TThis walk goes through the Hoogmoerheide nature reserve where forests and dry heather alternate. Then the route goes in the direction of the nature reserve Het Moer, traditionally a swamp that forms the original source of the Noordermark. The last part goes through landscape park 't Zwart Goor. In addition to the heathland, you will pass the Grote Vijver with its romantic boathouse.

Distance: 11 km.

Time: 2h45.

Grade: Easy.

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.


The Moer and Zwart Goor.

From the chapel you walk in the direction of Hoogmoerheide, which you cross. Then you follow the Gelsmoerloop for a while to reach the Het Moer nature reserve. What is immediately noticeable are the pools that are scattered in the landscape. Further on you follow the Noordermark and just before the remains of the Moer mill you take a wooden path that leads through the area. In the Zwart Goor nature reserve, monotonous pine forests were transformed into heathland. You go through the preventorium Emmaüs to the Grote Vijver where there is still a beautiful boathouse.


Download PDf for a complete routedescription.

Shortening to 4.8 km possible

Several picnic benches along the way.

Map & Poi's.

POI 1 - Hoogmoerheide.

The Hoogmoerheide is a remarkably dry heath in the middle of the Turnhouts fens area and Het Moer. The non-profit organization Natuurpunt has carried out a number of management works here over the years, which resulted in the restoration of the heather vegetation. Bush heather dominates in the dry areas, while heather and pipe straw flourish on slightly moister soils.

No extra information.

POI 2 - The Moer.

The Moer, traditionally a swamp, is the source of the Noordermark. At the time, a settlement was established on Bergske, called Craytenborch or Krijtberg. The residents got fuel for the fireplace from Het Moer. The peat layers were dredged with a fork, cut into chunks and placed in dry piles. The peat blocks gave heat but no flame. Later on they came up with layers of clay with which stones were fired in clamp kilns. Willows were also felled in Het Moer, used to make seats for church chairs, among other things.

No extra information.

POI 3 - Moer mill.

De Pelseneer - De Chaffoy from Mechelen was a manufacturer of seats from willow twigs. He had a stone windmill built in 1844, used to grind grain but also to dewater the Moer with a paddle wheel. In 1889 the mill was converted into an upper barrow by Adriaan Gilis, his brother Miel later used it to store wind energy in accumulators by means of a generator. The stone hull recalls a glorious past.

No extra information.

POI 4 - Zwart Goor.

The Zwart Goor evolved from a spacious park and country retreat of a large landowner to a preventorium acquired by the Emmaüs non-profit association. Currently, the Emmaüs op 't Zwart Goor offers shelter to 400 adults with a mental and intellectual disability. Their large pond with romantic boathouse is the most idyllic spot in Merksplas. Natuurpunt converted the old and monotonous pine forests into a heathland where one can still admire the relief of the rare inland dunes. The historic lanes were rejuvenated.

No extra information.