Recreation | July 7, 2021

Waterfalls on the river Scheldt

Waterfalls on the river Scheldt

Waterfalls, in a region as flat as Flanders? Yes, it’s possible! In some places along the rivers Scheldt and Dijle, you can see real rapids and cascades. Check out when and where.

Plan your visit

To find out when the river falls are at their most impressive, check our online map with dates and times for various locations. The best places to visit are Bergenmeersen (Wichelen), the Polders of Kruibeke and the Zennegat in Mechelen. When the tide is high and the river water flows through the inlet sluices into the flood control areas, it creates beautiful cascades. The higher the water level on the river, the more impressive the falls. The most spectacular cascades are the ones in the Polders of Kruibeke, but the other two locations are definitely worth a visit too. On the website, you can view the predicted tides up to a year in advance. The symbol with one, two or three waves indicates the strength of the fall. Make sure you arrive at the lock 15 minutes in advance, so you don’t miss anything!

  • Polders of Kruibeke: you will find the inlet lock in the dike along the Scheldt, a 400 meter walk from the ferry pier in Kruibeke.
  • Bergenmeersen: the inlet lock is located at the end of the boardwalk at the Nederkouter in Wichelen. Follow the dike along the Scheldt towards the cemetery (Paddenhoek).
  • Zennegat: the inlet lock in Mechelen is located in the dyke at the river Dijle.

Safety always comes first: if a storm tide is predicted, it is best to postpone your visit

Climate buffering

The cascades on the Scheldt and the Dijle are only found in flood control areas with reduced tides. Such areas combine an optimal flood protection with opportunities for tidal nature. Innovative locks ensure that tidal waves have limited access to the area. The resulting tidal nature is a valuable ally in improving biodiversity and in the fight against the adverse effects of climate change. At the river side tidal nature protects the dykes from the forces of the waves.

The European LIFE Sparc project and the Flemish Sigma Plan create more room for the river and restore precious tidal nature in eight different areas. We work with nature to create a climate-proof Scheldt valley. As a result many other ecosystem services are provided, such as recreation and cleaner air and water.

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Picture: ©De Vlaamse Waterweg