On the evening before the 14the August 1637 (Our dear ladies ascension day) two young boys - Petrus (Peeterke) and Jan(neke) Van den Brande were walking along a willow in the Lange Nieuwstraat (the road leading between Mechelen and LierSuddenly Jan(neke) saw something in a crack of the willow and it seemed that inside a 12 cm small statue of Holy...more
Capels oldest monument is for sure the chapel that is on the Souther bank of the river Nete and named after "Onze Lieve Vrouwe van Goede Wil" (Our dear lady of good will). Already in the 11th century there used to be a wooden chapel on this spot, the Saint Mertens chapel. Duffel belonged then to the bisdom of Kamerijk. Though the chapel was rebuilt...more
Duffel had actually three castles on a very small surface. One castle now-a-days actually is the manucipality hall. The other is the castleruin of Ter Elst and across the Nete river there is a small park with in it's centre the place where the Perwyn castle used to be. This castle disappeaered however, leaving the lustal gardens that surrounded it...more
Cutting Duffel in two unequal parts is the little river Nete, that at this point has been transfered into a enormous storage facility for water. It's called the Antwerpse waterwerken (waterworks). Dikes are raising high above the average waterlevel and the riverbed looks far more wide then it necessarily should be. Still, the Belgian rivers need an...more
In Dutch the water willow tree (with the hanging branches) is called "treur wilg". This literraly means "moarning willow" or "sad willow". In Duffel a famous place is the "Treur" (= sad) island as for the many water willow that are on it. The name in combination with the place indeed gives a bit of a depressing atmosphere, though it is actually a...more
One of the most scenic items at the castle ruins of Ter Elst is the completely intact bridge over the canal towards the castle. It is one of the most photographed places within Duffel, just because of - when the water is perfectly still - the wonderful reflection of the bridge in the water. For me it came out to be a pitty as it just started...more
The Muggenbergpark is a masterpiece in parks. It is not well taken care offm it is done in such precision that it is breathtaking. Everything is so perfect: plants, grass, trees, water runnings. The park holds a dazzling amount of colours green (especially as I was there in springtime) and is flanking the dikes of the river Nete (Antwerpse...more
On the western flanks of Duffel there is a very romantic place. It's the small Ter Elst Park with in it's midst the beautiful ruins of castle Ter Elst. I never knew that ruins actually could be pretty and if only one tries to imagine what the castle must have been like. The graceful central tower, surrounded by a colourful wall, equally decorated...more
Duffel is situated on the N14 between Lier and Mechelen, but can also be reached directly from the freeway E19 running between Antwerpen and Brussel.
Trouble with Duffel is the fact that the small town is overwhelmed with impressive giants plus two larger brothers in touristic interest. Antwerpen and Brussels attract the main tourist mass and the somewhat more intrested minority end up visiting as well wonderful Mechelen and Lier. Maybe during their drive to and from these main destinations, the pass or even drive through Duffel. An occasional ""he, what was that - it really looked nice" is what's left to the monuments of Duffel, but ... it also keeps the secret a little secret ... for you and me.
In the Muggenbergpark are various signs that point to certain excersises that have to be done. This is a fitness parcours that can be obtained by the service Sports of the town Duffel (manucipality hall).