White Beer Travels. What's in a Name?  All is revealed on the Home Page! Schneider Weisse, a well-travelled, classic Wheat/White Beer, brewed in Bavaria by Schneider.  Click on the image to go to their website De Lijn's website is an invaluable tool to check whether it is possible to go from A to B in Belgium, by bus and/or by tram and/or by train. If a route exists, timetables are available on the website.   Click here to go to it
Belgian Beer, German Beer, British Real Ale, North American Craft Beer and Speciality Beer from around the world, are all covered in this White Beer Travels website This White Beer Travels website has been in operation since March, 2002.  It promotes Speciality/Craft Beer from around the world: Belgian Beer, German Beer, Craft Beer from the USA and Canada, Real Ale from the UK, etc
 
Click here  to reach the "White Beer Travels" Home PageClick here for Speciality Beer and Brewery News.  Also check out the "Archives" for "old" news!Click to find details of Beer Hunts that you can joinClick here to get information on Past Beer Hunts organised by White Beer TravelsClick here for information on what to expect on a typical Beer Hunt organised by White Beer TravelsCurrent "Pub of the Month". See the "Archives" page for links to the other onesClick here for John White's Beer CV (Curriculum Vitae, Résumé) Click here for past Pubs of the Month, News, etcClick here for downloadable guides to places, breweries and barsClick here for "Links" to other websites. There are many on the other pages of the site, as well!Click here for full details on how to contact White Beer TravelsClick here for information on how the site was built, including acknowledgement of any help receivedClick here for details of the French to English Translation Service offered by White Beer Travels, & for the contact details of organisations that can provide the reverse
Belgian Beer and other great Speciality/Craft Beers, these including Real Ale from the UK and Craft Beers from the USA and Canada, are promoted on this, the White Beer Travels website.  It is a big site, so to get an outline idea of the contents, click here to go to the site's Contents page
  Würzburg, in Germany, is world-renowned for its "Franken" wines. However, White (Wheat) Beers have certainly travelled to the city.  The three different ones shown here are excellent examples. All are brewed in the city's Würzburger Hofbräu Brewery. Click on the glasses to go to the brewery's website, from which the image was pasted

Brouwerij Kerkom, Naamsesteenweg 469, Kerkom-Sint-Truiden, Belgium.  The photo was pasted from the place's website

Kerkom Brewery
Sint-Truiden, Belgium

This photo was pasted from the Brewery's website, www.brouwerijkerkom.be

This marvellous brewery can be reached by De Lijn bus. This Web page provides information on such gems of the Belgian Speciality/Specialty/Craft Beer world can be reached by public transport.

 

The Brouwerij Kerkom (Kerkom Brewery) is in the village of Kerkom, which is South of the town of Sint-Truiden, in Belgian Limburg. The brewery has its own bar, where its excellent range of beers can be sampled on the premises. Food possibilities include Cheese made with the brewery's Bink Blond beer. Kerkom is has one of the best brewery bars in the whole of Belgium. It is is full of breweriana, plus décor to match: an old stove, tiled floor, old servery, etc, etc. It will certainly be featured in a future White Beer Travels Beer Hunt.

The bar is open between April and October on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, from Noon until 8pm, and on Saturday, Sunday and National Holidays from 10am. Between November and March, it is open on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1pm until 8pm. Note that, this information is from the brewery's website, which uses "October to April" instead of the "November to March" that I have used for the Winter opening times. The brewery's website also states that the bar is not open from Christmas until the end of January.

 

 

How to use the De Lijn website, to find Belgian Bus, Tram and Train Routes and Times

The De Lijn website (www.delijn.be, Bookmark) can be used to obtain travel details for journeys in the Dutch speaking half of Belgium, i.e. in the Provinces listed in the section below. The equivalent website covering Wallonia, the French-speaking part of Belgium, is www.tec-wl.be. Both of these websites are only in one language, i.e. in Dutch and French respectively. This White Beer Travels Web page provides details of how to use the De Lijn website for people who can understand English, but not Dutch. If it is just Belgian train times that you are after, then www.b-rail.be is your best option, this having Dutch, French and English pages; it covers the whole of Belgium.

This is an example of a simple use of the De Lijn website to find the bus times from Essen Railway Station, in Antwerp Province, to visit a beer festival (White Beer Travels Web page) in a building called the Heuvelhal, Kapelstraat 7, Essen. From information from the organisers, I actually know that this is next to a building called the Gemeentehuis, which has a bus stop close by it called "Essen Gemeentehuis". However, to make the example more meaningful, I will use its address to find the transport itinerary, which should produce a route with a bus going to "Essen Gemeentehuis". Once you have followed this, it is no more difficult to put a more distant starting point,such as Antwerpen-Centraal Railway station, a popular starting or intermediate point en route to Essen.

What follows, is one use of the De Lijn website that works for me, when requiring to do such an example task. The De Lijn website works in exactly the same way for tram and train times and combinations of all three, plus any walking that may be necessary.

First of all, click on "reisinfo" (Travel Information) toward the top of the page. Then click on "de beste reisweg van 1 plaats naar een andere (de routeplanner)" (The best route from one place to another (The Route Planner). This gives a table that one can fill in, which can, in fact, be reached by clicking here.

In the TIJDSTIP (Time and Date of Travel) box enter the date that you want to travel and the approximate time, i.e. for 2pm (14.00), put 14 in the "uur" box and leave the "min" box at the default "00". Note that the first pull down menu has two options, the default being "vertrekken, which means that the time entered is the "departure time"; the other option is "aankomen", which is clearly "arrival time".

In the VAN - NAAR (From - Where To) box enter, for the vertrekgemeente (Departure Point) "Essen", and select the "nmbs-station" button, if not already selected. In the same box, for the aankomstgemeente (Arrival Point), again input Essen and select the "adres" button (defined address in Essen), if not already selected. Then, in the same box, press "OK". If you knew the bus stop name, you could have selected the "halte" button (named bus stop button). After selecting either of these buttons, in the same box, press "OK".

This shades out the first two boxes already filled in and presents a DETAILS box at the bottom. On the "van Nmbs" line click on "Lijst" (List [of railway stations]) on the right and then select STATION ESSEN from the list offered. In the "naar Adres" (to a defined address) line, enter Kapelstraat in the "naar Adres" (to Address) window and "7" in the "nr" (street number) window, then press ZOEKEN (Find [the itinerary]). Alternatively, if you did not know the street, befoe pressing ZOEKEN, one could have clicked on "Stratenlijst" (List of Streets [in Essen]) and selected from the list of streets provided in Essen.

It duly produces an itinerary. In addition to a bus leaving at the time closest to the one chosen, a lot of other useful information is also given on the page itself, and can be reached from it. For example, one can clearly see how long the journey takes from the page itself ("reis tijd" column), and from the OVERZICHT (Overview) box, in the column "Lijn", one can see that it is a number 670 De Lijn bus with a route between Essen-Kapellen-Antwerpen (it only goes between Essen and Kapellen at weekends). If one click on the hyperlinked "670" one gets a page with a hyperlinked "pdf 1". Clicking on this gives one a timetable for the whole day, from which one can ascertain that the stop before the required one is called "Essen Molenstraat", which is useful information if you are watching out for your stop, when on the bus; I generally ask the driver to let me know when I am at my stop, but this is back up, should he/she forget, or is stroppy and just won't tell you.

Back on the page that gave you the particular bus time and number, if you click on ESSEN STATION in the DETAILWEERGAVE (Detailed Description) box, you get all the other times of the buses from the Station to the "Essen Gemeentehuis" stop. On the same line, you will note two hyperlinked occurences of the word "wandel". This means walk. Pressing on the first one, produces a map showing where the railway station bus stop is in relation to the railway station itself and it tells you that it is around a walk of one minute from the railway station to its bus stop. For the bus destination, the word "bus" is hyperlinked. Clicking on this, gives a map showing the destination bus stop, on which it can be seen that the bus stop is indeed on the required Kapelstraat. Clicking on the second "wandel" hyperlink one can see that it is a two minute walk from the "Essen Gemeetehuis" stop to the Beer Festival Venue, at Kapelstraat 7 (in reality, it is much less than two minutes).

The procedure is repeated for the return journey. Note that the timetable tend to be the same for Monday to Friday, but different on Saturday and Sunday, or there may only be a service on Saturday, but not Sunday, or even none at all at weekends. For the Essen example, there are buses on Saturday and Sunday, the times on each day being the same, these being the days of the week when the beer festival is on.

If you put in Station Antwerpen-Centraal as the start point of the destination and specifies an arrival time of 14.00 (the time the beer festival opens) one gets an itinerary of: the 12.41 train from Antwerpen-Centraal (direction Roosendaal (NL); arrive at Kapellen Station at 13.00 and walk 296 metres to "Kapellen Dorp" Bus Stop (as above, the map for the walk is available from the De Lijn website) and catch the number 670 bus, at 13.10, in the direction of Essen, getting off at the stop named "Essen Gemeentehuis" at 13.51, for the nineteen metre walk to join the queue for the beer festival opening at 14.00. Note that the 12.41 train from Antwerpen-Centraal actually stops at Essen, arriving there at 13.18, from which, if walking, rather than waiting for the 14.05 bus, would get you to the beer festival venue before this more complicated and round the houses route via Kapellen. if you wanted to arrive in Essen earlier, to have some lunch somewhere, the De Lijn or Belgian Railways website will inform you that trains leave from Antwerpen-Centraal at forty-one minutes past the hour, arriving in Essen at eighteen minute past the hour, as per the one already exampled. To get to the Beer Festival via Essen Railway Station, by train from Antwerp and beyond, is really a better option than the route suggested by De Lijn involving the bus from Kapellen, so to come up with this "preferred" itinerary, one would produce an itinerary from wherever to Essen Station and then a second one, as per the one exampled above, from the station to the festival venue. Although this is a specific example, it is the sort of thought that should go into using the De Lijn website for other journeys that you are planning.

When the De Lijn Website is stumped!

Occasionally, De Lijn's website does not come up with an itinerary, when using the method outlined above. This usually happens when there is no bus within a certain distance of the address plugged in. For example, this happens if you try to get a route to the Mort Subite brewery, in Kobbegem (Asse) (address: Lierput 1). For such instances, an option is to get a map out and look on it for the nearest railway station, which in this case is Zellik, which is served by regular trains from the three main stations in Brussels. Zellik railway station is under four kilometres (2 ½ miles) from the brewery), so is not too bad a walk, but clearly outside the range offered by De Lijn's website.

The De Lijn Belbus System

De Lijn has a system of buses that can be ordered by telephone. Click here for a White Beer Travels Web page giving details of how to use it. The following is the list of Belbus telephone numbers to be used in each of the Flemish Provinces: Antwerp (Antwerpen) 03 218 14 94; East Flanders (Oost-Vlaanderen) 09 210 94 94; Flemish Brabant (Vlaams-Brabant) 016 31 37 00; Limburg 011 85 03 00; and West Flanders (West-Vlaanderen) 059 56 52 56. Note that when you come up with a travel itinerary, as per the example above, when one gets the result, there is often an "alternatief" hyperlink" in the results box. Clicking this often comes up with details of the Belbus that covers the route, should there be one. This, indeed, is the case with the above example in Essen, the route being covered, the De Lijn website reveals, by the Kalmthout-Essen Belbus, which, being in Antwerp Province, is booked by ringing, as already stated, 03 218 14 94. Note that the maximum number that can be booked on a Belbus is fourteen.

John White (1945-), Your cursor is on an image of John White's e-mail address. Click on it to send an e-mail to John.

Belgian Beer, just about the world's most renowned Speciality Beer is promoted on this website, along with great beer from all over the world
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