Hike of the Ninglinspo River
Yes, the Ninglinspo. Ning (as in: dingue), Lin (as in: lapin) and Spo (as in... Well, Spo, with the O from ‘okay’). The Ninglinspo is the only Belgian mountain river, and at the same time the name of the hike that goes alongside it.
It is without a doubt one of the most beautiful hiking trails in the Belgian Ardennes. Every hiker should have done the route at least once.
We recommend everyone to buy a hiking map before taking off. This goes for all hikes in the region. You will know what signs to follow, the length of each route, where to start... Your departure will be carefree.
The tourist information centre in Aywaille (Place Joseph Thiry 9a) is not as accessible as expected. Apparently it is quite common for personnel to arrive a few hours late. So that’s why we were standing in front of a closed door, when the office had to be open according to schedule.
But then there is the Librairie du centre (Place Joseph Thiry 29) where you will be kindly attended and the same hiking maps are available. Most of the maps will cost you around 7 euros.
Departure point for the Ninglinspo hike is a parking lot somewhere between Remouchamps and Stoumont, in a village called Sedoz (the street has the exact same name). It takes a bit of looking around, but to make life easier for everyone, here are the GPS coordinates for the departure point: 50.468609,5.74354.
The hike itself leads you through a breath-taking part of the Belgian Ardennes. The region around Aywaille and Remouchamps is one of our favourite spots in Wallonia: very green and the hills provide the landscape with that extra touch.
The Ninglinspo is a proper mountain river, even though it’s a small one. Alongside the river you will find many water-basins, where you can dip your toes. The little waterfalls are very charming and find their way through the rocky scenery.
For the kids there are plenty of spots where they can have fun building dams. Careful: the Ninglinspo hike is, in fact, quite challenging, so it might be less suitable for very young children.
There’s a lot of climbing and descending and it might take a few seconds before it becomes clear which path to follow. But getting lost is practically impossible.
Visitors get the chance to enjoy the breath-taking scenery of this part of the province of Liège. And halfway through the hike, when you leave the river Ninglinspo, you can take a short break at the Drouet viewpoint. This offers you an astonishing panoramic view on the valley.
A slight disappointment is the absence of some benches. You can have a few minutes’ rest, but a comfortable seat is not to be found on site.
In short, the hike of the river Ninglinspo is a must for everyone visiting the Belgian Ardennes. Put on your adventurous shoes and enjoy the breath-taking scenery in the province of Liège.
Do you want to prolong the route? The Ninglinspo loop can be connected with that of the river Chefna. This is another affluent of the river Amblève. A local expert provided us with this tip. We will be keeping it in mind for our next trip.
- follow the blue rectangle for the standard Ninglinspo loop;
- put on some sturdy hiking shoes;
- keep in mind it will feel a few degrees colder during the hike because of the shadow;
- don’t be too late. Especially in high-season it can be quite crowded alongside the Ninglinspo. We took on the hike on a Tuesday in June, and we were the only ones in the wide area;
- the hike is just 6 kilometres long, but it takes, because of the altitude differences, roughly 2.5 hours to finish,.