The family-owned microbrewery De Cam is next door of the volkscafe & the music instrument museum. You can taste a real Kriek (cherry) beer which would come as a shock if you only know the standardised & sanitised Kriek served in cafe's and pubs. The Kam also brews Lambiek and Geuze, and were awarded a joint frist place for foreign beers at the Cambridge Beer Festival in 2005. You can arrange for a guided visit and learn more about the process of yeasting, fermenting and blending the beer.
The oldest building in Gooik still in use today, the St Niklaas church boasts a Romance tower from the 12th century. The baptising chapel is from 13c, while the church interior is in 16th century Gothic style.
There is a tiny music instrument museum above De Cam (see restaurant tip). Music societies together with their marching bands were very popular in Flanders in the 19th and 20th century, and almost every village had an extensive marching bands. The selection here contains instruments, scores and photos going back to 1840s. The entrance is free - just go to the second floor of the cafe.
A fairly spacious cafe which serves local snacks, meals & drinks. This place turned up a real treat, (once we passed underr the scrutiny of the locals, hehe). The staff was very friendly.
The menu is in the local dialect with translation in Dutch, very charming. We didn't know what exactly we ordered and received meatballs with cherry compote (really yummy!), a veggie burger (potatoes, carrots, parsnip) and the requisite tons of " fritjes". The cafe also brews its own beer and organises beer tastings.
On the second floor, you can visit the museum of folk-instruments (free entrance).
Favorite Dish: Ballekes mei wérme kriêken (meatballs with cherry compote)
Gooik has it's own dialect which in written form looks like this:
Guuëk, de pèèrel van ‘t Pajotteland, lèt ien ‘t muurn va Zèùdwést-Brôbant én besstoeët èùt vèèf kérkderpen : Guuëk, Lérrebeik, Uuëtiengen,Késter én Strâland.Bekaanst 10 000 Guuëknèèrs wuuënn ië ien ‘n restege, gruûn oemgeivienk.’t Es iê ‘n èùtgeleize plosj oem te wandeln en oem per vlou of te pjèèr te rân. Doeë z’n veil arranzjeméntn vanéùt ‘DE CAM’ én ge koentj iê zelfs ne vlou of e pjèèd èn e huifkere uûrn.
Three nice parcours has been created for the mountainbike lovers.
The parcours can be built according to each persons needs. They can vary from 24,5 to 41 km . Starts are at De Cam (located at Dorpsstraat 67), at Den Haas (located at Wijngaardbosstraat 6) or Warande Hof
At both De Cam and Den Haas, you can start for a traject of 24.5 or 32 or 33 or 41 km. At Warande Hof you can start for a track of 32 or 41 kilometers. The start at the Warande Hof is the only location providing showers.
The plans can be found on http://www.bloso.be/public/bloso/Docs/Mountainbikeroutes/GooikRoute.pdf
Equipment: Mountainbike and adapted clothing. I've been told that bikes can be rent at
Fietsen De Spaak