Car Routes

The car routes are for sale in our Tourist Office or through this website https://shop.westtoer.be/en/products/maps-brochures

Ypres Salient car route

The Ypres Salient (known as the Ieperboog in Flemish) was a bulge in the front line. The Germans occupied the ridges which formed a semi-circle around the city of Ieper.  This put the British at a disadvantage, since they were overlooked on three sides from this high ground.  This was an area of repeated savage fighting, since it was one of the most vulnerable sectors of the front: a breakthrough here could have had disastrous consequences for either side. The route takes you to all the most important sites and monuments on the old battlefields, as well as telling the stories of John Mc Crae, George Guynemer, Passendale, Tyne Cot Cemetery, Hill 60…


Start: Railway station Ieper

Distance: 70 km

Price: € 6

The Pioneer Route

explores the area behind the old German front of 1914-1918. Today, this area straddles the borders of France, Flanders and Wallonia. But during the war there were no such borders.  The Flemish town of Wervik and the French town of Wervicq-Sud were merged together to form a single municipality. The German ‘Pioniere’ - pioneer troops or military engineers - were a common sight throughout the region. They were responsible for the building and maintenance of roads, concrete bunkers, munitions depots, field hospitals.... 

Start: Memorial Museum Passchendaele 1917


Distance: 75 km

Price: € 6

Life at the Front

explores the front area between Poperinge, Heuvelland and surroundings. There was the bitter life at the front and the better life behind the front. ‘Pop’ was like a little Paris. A few kilometres away lies the border between life or death. Heuvelland was a scene of constant fighting, a veritable gateway to the hell of Dante’s Inferno. 

Start: Grote Markt Poperinge


Distance: 87 km

Price: € 6

No man's land

This route follows the changing front line between the Allied and German sectors. On 22 April 1915 chlorine gas was used for the first time. Langemark was the scene of the slaughter of the young German volunteers, who offered their lives for the fatherland. During the Final Offensive Belgian troops stormed the fortress of Houthulst Forest. Diksmuide was a dangerous sector throughout the war, and later became a place of pilgrimage for Flemish veterans. 

Start: Visitor's Centre Diksmuide


Distance: 68 km

Price: € 6

Free Fatherland

From October 1914 to September 1918 the last remaining piece of unoccupied Belgium was no bigger than a pocket handkerchief. Yet in this small strip of land there were 180,000 combat soldiers, as well as local people who clung to their homes, refugees, the wounded and medical staff. It was incredibly busy: breweries, laundries, supply depots, field kitchens, hospitals. Everything was geared to the war. For four years, the unoccupied zone was the heart of the country - until the Final Offensive of September 1918 paved the way for liberation. 

Start: Grote Markt Veurne

Distance: 92 km

Price: € 6

Yser Front

At the end of October 1914, the deliberate flooding of the plain of the River IJzer brought the German advance to a halt. Along the banks of this river the Belgium army, under the command of King Albert I, stubbornly defended the last small piece of independent Belgium. Offensive action in the IJzer region was impossible. From Nieuwpoort to Diksmuide the front remained static for four long years. Both towns were reduced to ruins by the constant shelling.

Start: King Albert I monument - Nieuwpoort

Distance: 74 km

Price: € 6

'14 -'18 car route map

Following the commemoration of 100 years of the 'Great War', Westtoer developed six First World War-themed tourist routes throughout Flanders Fields in cooperation with participating boroughs. The six routes have now been compiled into a general map: '14-18 Car route map’. 

One side of the brochure shows a map with the six routes, and the other side provides practical information relating to each route as well as an overview of the most important WW1 sights that can be found on each route. 

Price: € 5




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