Belgium’s famous forest is overtaken each spring by a dreamlike carpet of wild bluebells, and people flock to witness the breathtaking natural phenomenon.
The Blue Forest also known as The Hallerbos Forest, unique density and beauty of wild bluebells transforms it for a few weeks into a sea of brilliant blue hue . The floral carpet of purple blue flowers entices numerous hyacinth tourists to the forest. It is located at the boundary of Flanders and Wallonia, in the municipality of Halle, 30 minutes south of Brussels.
The Hallerbos Forest covers an area of 552 ha (1,360 acres) and from late April to early May, a few acres of woodlands on the edge of Hallerbos are covered by a splendid carpet of wild bluebell hyacinths as it brushes up against the lean beech trees. In early spring, the forest canopy is covered with leaves, sunlight pours through the branches and turns the pale blue of the flowers into a vivid blue-purple. At this time it is also full of bird song; blackcap warblers, wrens with the nuthatches, the loudest.
Historically, the Hallerbos was part of the Silva Carbonaria, along with other forests in the vicinity. But it was destroyed during World War I, although some ancient oak and beech trees survived the devastation. Between the 1930s and 1950s, major replanting took place, reintroducing the native beech and oak trees. But, the wild bluebell hyacinths are all natural and the giant Sequoia trees also make a visit to this forest. Visitors can stroll the winding paths, and watch for rabbits and deer wandering through the green and azure woods.