The village of Watou, a sub-municipality of Poperinge, is situated on the ‘schreve’, the area close to the border with France. When territory was divided between Flanders and France, Watou very nearly found itself on the French side of the dividing line. Now it is one of the foremost art villages in the Westhoek. There is a festival of Gregorian music in May and an arts festival later in the summer, where the plastic arts, poetry and literature all play a prominent role. Add to this a good Watou beer from the local brewery, and the success of your visit is guaranteed!
The Westhoek is a veritable paradise for beer-lovers, offering a wide variety of different local ales, many brewed in the tradional manner. The delicious 'trappists' from Westvleteren are perhaps the best-known, but there are plenty of others to chose from- and all of them are worth a try!
No matter where you go in the Westhoek, you will always be able to eat and drink in style. Gastronomic cooking in Flanders is largely based on French cuisine, yet always with a unique Flemish twist. Of course, there are also plenty of delicious regional and seasonal specialities to try, sush as potjesvlees (jellied veal, chicken and rabbit) in Veurne, hop shoots in Poperinge (March-April) or mussels and chips in any month with an 'r' in it. Chips are also a great Belgian speciality - something which you should appriciate - but we eat them with mayonaise or pickels and not with vinegar!
Hof van Wyckhuize The ‘Hof van Wyckhuize’ domain has several benches and tables were you can enjoy a pleasant picnic. Would you like to find out more about the area? You can get all the information you need in the tourist office in the ‘Hof van Wyckhuize’ mansion: one of the few surviving country manor houses dating from the 17th century. Since 1981, the administrative offices of the local municipality have also been located here.