THE STORY BEHIND THE

Western Front Trail

In 2018, the idea was forged to develop a walking route along the entire Western front line. After numerous meetings and agreements with tourism sectors, the Western Front Way was created. A Via Sacra that should keep alive the remembrance of the First World War and its more than 20 million war victims. The inspiration was rediscovered in a letter from Alexander Douglas Gillespie, a young soldier who was serving at the Battle of Loos in 1915. Three months before he died, Alexander wrote to his family and headmaster about the trail and his dream:  a beautiful road...for all nations to walk together in peace once the conflict was over.
 



An epic trail walk along the Great War memorial sites in Flanders Fields

The Via Sacra - Western Front Way runs 1,000 km along No Man's land and the Western front line. Starting from Nieuwpoort to Pfetterhouse on the French-Swiss border, it is the longest walking route in Northwestern Europe. The first 95 km runs on Flemish soil and connects Nieuwpoort with Diksmuide, Ypres and finally Mesen.

Following the Western Front Way, Wandelsport Vlaanderen vzw is organizing a new long-distance walking route THE WESTERN FRONT TRAIL. Keeping Peace & World War I commemoration alive is the message behind the Western Front Trail. The epic trail walk passes along the main Great War memorial sites in Flanders Fields. 

The logo 

The first phase of the Via Sacra - Western Front Way between Nieuwpoort and Ploegsteert has now been completed and marked for walkers. In the Westhoek, the walking route is marked with a logo consisting of the four memorial flowers: poppy (Commonwealth), daisy (Belgium), cornflower (France) and forget-me-not (Germany).


CHOOSE YOUR EPIC WESTERN FRONT TRAIL

Western Front Trail 

MESEN - NIEUWPOORT 85km

The Western Front Trail 85km starts from Mesen, the smallest city in Belgium. The ultimate challenge passes all the special World War I war sites of the Western front line.

Western Front Trail

IEPER - NIEUWPOORT 60km

Starting in the vicinity of the imposing Menin Gate Memorial the the Missing, you walk through Ypres Salient and the Yzer Front past special war sites from the First World War.

Western Front Trail

DIKSMUIDE - NIEUWPOORT  

The Yser Tower, a symbol of peace and war, is the starting point of the mini Western Front Trail. With the Yserand the Frontzate as an ally, you will reach Westfront Nieuwpoort


They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them