With this cycle route we zoom in on the influence of the secular lords in the creation of churches and chapels and on their role as patrons of various religious institutions. This is the land of the mighty medieval lords of Dendermonde! What else is 'lordly' in the Dendermonde-Buggenhout region? The abbey beers! In Dendermonde you can enjoy the blond Dendermonds Abbey beer. Buggenhout is home to the famous Triple Carmelite!
The route starts in Dendermonde and leads you along the rivers to Vlassenbroek and Baasrode. In the woody Buggenhout you will visit Opdorp, Buggenhout and Opstal.
The cycling brochure 'Heerlijke kerken en kapellen' (NL) is available free of charge at the tourist offices of Dendermonde and Buggenhout. The 'open church' Onze-Lieve-Vrouw in Dendermonde also offers the brochures as well as several other churches along the route. Hop on your bike and be surprised by the religious heritage!
During the first half of the 13th century, part of the present municipality of Sint-Gillis, then called Zwijveke, was placed within the city walls. Nowadays, the municipality uses the chapel of the former Saint-Gilles hospital as a parish church (...)
In 1223 a Cistercian monastery was founded by Lady Mathilda I, Lady of Dendermonde. The community moved in 1228 to the Zwijvekekouter outside the city walls. As a result of the devastation during the religious wars (...)
In the first half of the 13th century, a beguinage community arose in Dendermonde near the former Saint-Gilles Hospital. In 1288 it moved to the place of the present beguinage. The community experienced its greatest period of prosperity in the 17th century (...)
The Benedictine community in Dendermonde was founded in 1837 by one of the monks of the ancient abbey of Affligem. It is located in the old convent of the Capuchins. In the years that followed, the old monastery was adapted and rebuilt according to the needs of the new community (...)
The market square shows you the prosperity of the medieval trading town of Dendermonde with prestigious secular buildings such as the Town Hall and the Meat House Museum and the former cloth and meat halls (...).
In the 11th century a Romanesque church was built by order of Ringoot II, the lord of Dendermonde. The prosperous 13th century caused a large population increase. The old church was extended from the 14th century onwards and transformed into a sanctuary in Scheldt Gothic (...)
It is hard to believe today that Baasrode was once a very important trading and shipping centre. In 1777 there would have been no less than 5 shipwrights. The old 12th-century church of Baasrode was expanded around 1500 (...)
The church located in Opdorp dates from 1732. Already in the 15th century a chapel was built on this spot by order of the local lord. The chapel was adapted in the late 16th century to the late Gothic style (...)
Opdorp was a free territory. This made Opdorp a kind of immunity area. The lords of Opdorp and his population had a great deal of independence in terms of administration and justice. Apparently this also meant that Opdorp was a paradise for smugglers and refugees (...)
Little is known about the old church of Buggenhout. In 1500 the probably wooden church was replaced by a stone one. In the 18th century the church was further enlarged. The interior of the church is decorated with beautiful polychrome neo-gothic murals from the late 19th century (...)
The forest chapel in its present form dates from the 17th century but there was certainly already a chapel in 1504. According to legend, the chapel was then built by Jacoba van Heffene in memory of her husband, who was killed by a large wild boar during the hunt (...)
It was not until 1905 that Opstal was recognised as an independent parish. Before that it was part of the Buggenhout parish. The neo-Gothic church, the presbytery and the former monastery next to the church date from this period (...)