How to find Westvleteren: Directions to Vleteren for those making the pilgrimage
Many beer connaisseurs claim that the best beer in the world is made in a small town in western Belgium called Vleteren. This beer is known as Westvleteren. It is brewed by Trappist monks in their monastery and the proceeds support various charities. It is incredibly rare and hard to find in Belgium, let alone other parts of the world. So during my travels across Belgium I had one main prerogative: find Westvleteren.
Other Trappist beers are readily available just about anywhere where good beer is valued. Yet Westvleteren is so difficult to find that a pub in Amsterdam charged me 20€ for it. However, if you go directly to Vleteren you can order any of their brews for around 4-5€. So if you’re like me and enjoy tasty brews — and are planning a trip to Belgium — You may be looking for some helpful directions. Hopefully this post will aid those performing random google searches as well. So if you’re new to The Two Cities I’d like to welcome you. I’m glad we share a common bond in delicious beverages, but this is properly a theological blog. My desire to provide directions on this website is rooted not only in my love for beer, but also in a desire to promote the distinctly Christian enterprise of this “brewery.” As I have aspirations to start a small beer company that supports Christian ministries and social justice organizations as well, it is only right to recognize and appreciate the precedent that has been set by the Trappist order. I hope that this post will aid those searching for Westvleteren as I was unable to find good directions on the internet.
So here are some step by step directions with pictures. If you’re staying in Ieper (Ypres) you’ll want to take bus 50 to Vleteren. From this location the directions would apply to walking, cycling, or driving.
(1) When you get off the bus from Ieper (Ypres) in Vleteren cross the street to the left side of the road and head in the same direction as the bus until you see signs pointing toward Sint-Sixtus Abbey.
(2) Your next move is to make a left at the end of the road and then an immediate right (following the sign for Sint-Sixtus).
(3) The street will be a little winding but just stay on that road until signs for the Abbey direct you to take a left and then a later right as the pictures below demonstrate.
(4) The restaurant In de Vrede will be on left hand side and you’ll take a left when you see this sign:
(5) Then just go in and enjoy the beer! Overall the restaurant is fairly inexpensive. I ordered 4 beers, their most expensive meal twice, and their most expensive desert (ice cream made with Westvleteren beer!) and it was all under 40€! Here’s what you have to look forward to : )