Our walk on the lake of Nisramont is one of the best insights into the popular loop walk around the lake of Nisramont. This lake in the Belgian Ardennes is located in the heart of the Two Ourthes Nature Park. Lake Nisramont is a popular place for walking and water sports.
The lake of Nisramont is the ideal place to discover the joys of packraft and other water sports such as kayaking, paddling… and I would even add fishing.
In terms of landscape, this Belgian escape has an air of Scandinavia. Lake Nisramont clearly reminds us of the enchanting lakes in Sweden, which we visited during a canoe trip. It’s a godsend to have such a spot close to home, in the middle of nature.
Hiking (or trail): the tour of the lake of Nisramont
The unmissable tour of the Nisramont lake is one of the most beautiful marked routes in Belgium. In practice, the hike is 14 kilometres long and has a positive difference in altitude of about 700 metres. The starting point is the Nisramont lake dam. There is a large car park where you can leave your car.
The markings to follow are red diamonds. Unlike other hiking trails, it is not necessary to use a GPX trail for fear of getting lost. A tip is to simply make sure you always have a view of the Nisramont lake on your right if you are hiking clockwise or on your left if you are hiking anti-clockwise. The route is signposted in both directions.
What we like about the hike around the Nisramont lake is that it offers many incredible views of the surrounding nature. Our favourite is the landscape at the confluence of the two Ourthes. It is here that we find that coveted Scandinavian air of the Belgian landscape.
On the Nisramont lake tour, there is no question of venturing out like a tourist, without water or good walking shoes. It is too risky to approach the hike in this way knowing that there is no shortcut possible. In other words, to embark on it… is to commit to completing the tour. Hikers and sportsmen of all kinds will find it an exceptional terrain to taste the wild and technical paths of the Belgian Ardennes. I have done the tour of the lake several times as a trail runner. I appreciate the technical nature of the course. On the trail, there are never really any endless hills. It’s very frequent up & down, just like most Belgian trail routes. For the less athletic, we recommend our proposal of a walk to the lake of Nisramont, to be discovered in the following section.
Walk to the lake of Nisramont: a walk suitable for everyone
During our packraft hike on Lake Nisramont, we opted for a short version of the popular 14 kilometre hike. With a shortened route of only 5 kilometres round trip, this walk on the Nisramont lake looks like a stroll. The short distance of this walk still holds all its promise. From the Nisramont dam to the confluence of the two Ourthes lakes, there are no less than three magnificent viewpoints in a space of only 2.5 kilometres! These viewpoints give you an idea of the beautiful extent of the Two Ourthes Nature Park. The final destination is the confluence of the two Ourthes, where the famous Avolare work lies. It is the symbol of the two Ourthes. From there, two options: either return by water using your packraft, or return by land by foot along the same route.
Packrafting at the lake of Nisramont
The lake of Nisramont is the place to discover the joys of packraft. The packraft experience quickly takes on the appearance of a canoe trip like on the lakes of Värmland. The scenery and the setting are more than enough to let us imagine it. The only thing missing is to allow bivouacs and make the lake water drinkable.
Besides packraft, other water activities are popular on Lake Nisramont. Several companies offer the possibility to rent a kayak or paddle for a trip on the lake. A departure usually requires a return to the same place (depending on the level of organisation desired). This is where the packraft comes into its own, as the lightness of the boat means that it can be packed into a backpack and returned to the starting point. Around the lake of Nisramont, the hiking trails are fabulous. There are few places in Belgium where hiking and packrafting go so well together. That’s why we recommend you to follow our proposal for a walk around the lake of Nisramont by returning by water from the work of Avolare.
And whether it’s summer or winter, you don’t have to depend on a seasonal rental company to get the experience. There are also many companies that now offer daily packraft rentals throughout the year. Packrafting on the Nisramont lake is certainly ideal for an introduction to the practice, but another route that is particularly popular with the public deserves a mention. Starting from the Nisramont dam, there is the possibility of setting off on a more committed and sporting expedition that will allow you to discover the other facets of the sport. This involves sailing on the Ourthe downstream from the Nisramont dam to the Maboge bridge. A great way to discover this route is to leave your car at Maboge and to reach Nisramont via the forest paths of the Two Ourthes Nature Park. On this route, it is highly recommended to pass by the Cheslé and the Hérou rock. These are two places not to be missed in the area.
In addition to packraft, fishing is another activity that can be enjoyed on Lake Nisramont. However, it should be noted that swimming is not permitted at Lake Nisramont.
The lake of Nisramont with his dog
Our dog Ginger often accompanied us around the Nisramont lake. Not only for walks, but also to get on a packraft and a paddle. Lake Nisramont is the ideal lake to introduce your dog to water sports. We can’t really say that our dog Ginger is comfortable in this type of environment, but it’s a good exercise to get her used to the water. The idea is to get her out of her comfort zone as a learning experience.
The Nisramont lake is easy to paddle in packraft. There is no current. It is a peaceful lake, which makes the experience better when accompanied by a dog. Because it is in the middle of a forest sheltered from trees, the wind does not affect the peace of the water too much. In case of wind, there is not much risk of getting stuck at arm’s length in the waves. We have experienced this on the Haute-Sûre lake in Luxembourg or even worse on the Monteynard lake at the foot of the Vercors.
If you feel like introducing your dog to paddle boarding at the Nisramont lake, I suggest you discover our blog article “Roadtrip in Belgium: visiting Wallonia from Liège to Torgny, the Belgian Provence” where we talk about this experience. It is clearly an unusual experience to do with your dog.
Conclusion: A must-see lake in Belgium with a variety of activities
Whether you are paddling your kayak/packraft, hiking, fishing, or just taking some time for yourself… all the possible activities seem to merge with those you could do in Scandinavia. The only thing missing is a reindeer encounter, to fully enjoy it! To go far away, close by … is to discover this great lake in the Ardennes!
If there is one activity that is not to be missed in the nature park of the two Ourthes, it is this walk to the lake of Nisramont which we warmly recommend.