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Graveling in Oudenaarde

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Graveling in Oudenaarde

Cycling is a popular pastime in Oudenaarde. We are the town most central to the cobbled climbs of the Ronde van Vlaanderen (the Tour of Flanders), the most important race in Belgium so it’s not surprising that cycling
is so popular. Children start cycling early having spent a few years commuting on the front or back of a parent’s bike and bikes are often given right-of-way above cars on the roads, so it is relatively safe. Graveling is a popular sport in Oudenaarde too, a little different to the tame on-road commutes to and from work. Learn more about graveling and cycling in Oudenaarde when you book a stay at Leopold Hotel, a cyclist-friendly hotel in the city centre.

Cycling in Oudenaarde

Oudenaarde is a great city to cycle. The annual Tour of Flanders race is one of the coolest and most well-attended organized cycling events in existence and the practice you’ll get on a trip to its closest city is invaluable. The weather in the region sometimes makes it a difficult place to cycle, creating a challenge and pushing yourself to its limits. A trip to the Flanders region of Belgium is thought of as a pilgrimage to the most hallowed grounds in the sport sharing the roads where natives Eddy Merckx, Johan Museeuw and Tom Boonen became legends. Once renowned for its tapestry production, for a century now Oudenaarde has been the central access point to a network of loops connecting the cobbled climbs of De Ronde. The city is home to Centre Ronde van Vlaanderen, a museum dedicated entirely to the race and our place in Belgian cycling history. There are several thousand square feet of displays of memorabilia like jerseys, bikes, tools and more – enough to satisfy even the most hardcore cycling enthusiasts.

What is Graveling?

Seasoned cyclists will have noticed the boom in the popularity of graveling in recent years. Gravel riding tends to describe riding a drop-bar bike on unpaved roads and trails, fitting somewhere between road cycling and mountain biking. Gravel riding can encompass all types of terrain, from actual gravel to wooded singletrack and everything in between. versatility is key when it comes to gravel bikes and riders need to be experienced and confident to take on this slightly more dangerous form of riding. Taking the road less traveled enables riders to hone their passion for exploration and adventure and provides an opportunity to try a new racing discipline. It provides a respite for roads and traffic, two pain points for traditional cyclists.

Koppenberg, Kwaremont, and Oudenaarde are all world-famous landmarks in road cycling but what happens when you mix in famous cobbled hills with gravel, singletracks and unknown roads? Enjoy a demanding 85km gravel ride with 1.500m of climbing on the most demanding terrain in Flanders on the road less travelled. Some of these routes have held their place in cycling for over 100 years but we encourage brave riders to explore famous routes from their less popular and more difficult sides. Don’t expect an easy ride – the ground is uneven and the roads are muddy, but that’s all part of the appeal! Best completed between April and October, you have plenty of time to plan the ideal graveling trip and book the perfect accommodation.

Bike-Friendly Accommodation in Oudenaarde

The Leopold Hotel Oudenaarde is a 4* boutique hotel in the city centre of Oudenaarde in the heart of the Flemish Ardennes. You’ll find us right behind the Tour of Flanders Centre, a great place to brush up on your cycling trivia before your ride. The hotel has 66 spacious rooms and is suitable for all types of travellers from experienced solo riders to families looking for a leisurely cycle. Grab a delicious buffet breakfast in the morning before heading out on a two-wheeled adventure or relax afterwards with a meal in our restaurant & bar or on the terrace, if the weather allows. There’s free public parking at the front of the hotel and secure underground parking for an additional cost. We have a safe space to store your precious bikes and no prior booking is required.
If you’re planning a trip, book the best available rates exclusively on this website. We guarantee the lowest rates and flexible cancellation policies when you book directly. We’re looking forward to hearing about your graveling adventures!
Picture of Sarah Corcorcan

Sarah Corcorcan

With a keen interest in travelling and writing, our blog writer Sarah explores as often as possible, finding new and exciting places to write about. From popular tourist spots to hidden gems, Sarah aims to find the best of beautiful places so you can get the best out of your visit. Having visited Belgium numerous times, she has a special affection for its heritage, coastline and friendly locals.

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