When we cross the border to Belgium, we immediately have a wonderful holiday feeling. It is an enchanting drive through the green of the Ardennes to arrive at Hotel Bütgenbacher Hof in Bütgenbach, located in the East Cantons region of Belgium. We spent two wonderful days here. The service of this four-star hotel is very good, relaxed and friendly. And being based in the region between Wallonia, Germany, Luxemburg, Flanders and the Netherlands, very important: the staff is multi-lingual.
Some time has passed since we have been here, but considering the reviews the interior has changed in the meanwhile into an open, modern place, with attention to detail. Several options are offered to stay overnight. And it seems also the rooms have been modernized to create a relaxing and cozy setting in the meanwhile, but you might check on that while reserving yours. Double rooms have a maximum of four people; suites with your own living room are up to a maximum of five people. Rooms (cottages) in the annex also offer your own living room and can host a maximum of four family members. Pets are allowed here.
With children you might ask for a room in main building since these are just closer to swimming pool and restaurant. Don’t forget to spend time in the wellness area: the swimming pool is in the center of the spacious and well-equipped spa & wellness center. And it offers facilities such as a sauna, infrared booth, steam bath, bubble baths, sunbank and physical fitness center. All this within a quiet atmosphere.
We are pleasantly surprised by the food in the restaurant and new and creative approaches to dishes. The menu is not "à la carte" but the quality of the daily menu and gourmet menu is outstanding. In high season you might need to reserve your table, since it tends to be virtually full.
Being in such a green area one should not miss to explore the surroundings. Bikers will find great rides with children. And if you want something different for once, you can also opt for the rail bike. This route consists of a track section of +/- 7 km, located between the station of Kalterherberg and Sourbrodt. The trail runs through the High Fens and through the beautiful, unique landscapes of the region. The ride takes approximately two hours and there are also children chairs. With children from 12 years you can also opt for the e-scoot, through a mix of forests, country roads and some technical passages, with the emphasis on a lot of fun while discovering our region. And all this without much effort, without noise and with respect for nature.
As said, close to the hotel is the High Fens, the largest area of raised bog in Europe. It is established as a reserve in 1957, with their high altitude and unique location and next to raised bog consists of low, grass- or wood-covered hills, moorland and forest. It’s truly stunning both in summer and winter and has stunning hiking trails, walking paths, including those that are easily done with children. Make sure you wear waterproof footwear when walking through the Fens. And if you go in the summer, take care of sun cream.
If you have kids like ours, who love to swim, you will certainly have a good time at the lakes of Robertville and Bütgenbach. The water quality here has been high for years. In addition to swimming, extensive fun can be enjoyed with water bikes, kayaking and canoeing. And of course, in Belgium the weather can be bad; there are the indoor swimming pools in Bütgenbach, Eupen, Kelmis and St. Vith.
In Ars Tecnica, on a 2000 m² area, not only the model building dreams of children come true. And there are well-kept playgrounds in the main villages. Mini golf courses also score very well with children. Funsport has a lot more to offer in the area, such as paintball, bowling, karting and an escape room. In Worriken, the leisure center of Bütgenbach, there are various other sports options for children of all ages, from golfing to rope jumping. There are many water sports possible on and around the lake. And there is plenty of adventure with three altitude trails (one of the altitude trails is for children from 8 years), a climbing wall, archery and a treasure hunt. We do advise to inquire about the possibilities in advance.
During our family vacations, we often follow our rule that each day a person may decide what to do. In this way we can also enjoy some culture as adults and luckily our girls still like to join us. Different cultures come together in the East Cantons; in museums and nature parks you can learn a lot about nature, the environment and the inhabitants, but also about history, industry and artisans. Various castles and fortresses have a rich history to tell. A visit to monuments, memorials and museums that recall the war history, places of pilgrimage, churches and chapels are a tremendous experience.
# Such an outstanding base for an adventurous holiday with your family.
# Being able to use a beautiful swimming pool nearby in case of bad weather, including a perfect spa for the adults.
# Modern rooms, with an excellent restaurant. Definitely worth your money.