For its sixth edition - the first in Flanders Expo - the ‘Fiets en Wandelbeurs’ was accompanied by two other events: E-bike Challenge and Mount Expo. The combination of hiking, cycling and climbing tales clearly appealed to the public. Around 15,500 visitors attended the Fair to find new inspiration for an active holiday or to try out an (electric) bicycle.
Fiets en Wandelbeurs
More than 300 exhibitors from the tourism sector, the travel sector, the bicycle and outdoor world presented their offering of routes, holidays, hiking boots and trekking bikes. Alongside this dozens of seasoned hikers, cyclists and climbers shared their stories and tips with a keenly interested public. The Hiking Route of the Year was the Great-Friesland way, while La Vélo Francette was Cycling Route of the year. "Once again, the ‘Fiets en Wandelbeurs’ fulfilled its founding aim: inspiring and motivating people to get outdoors and have an activity based holiday", according to Theo Jorna, the organiser of the Fair.
The E-bike Challenge brought a new dimension to the event. The uptake of electrically driven/assisted bicycles is growing at a phenomenal rate and that was amply demonstrated at Flanders Expo. Bicycle makers presented dozens of new models of e-bikes, e-mountain bikes and speed pedelecs, which the visitors used to make extensive trial runs on the large test track. A successful event in every way.
Another new development was the combination with Mount Expo, the mountain sports Fair of the ‘Klim en Bergsportfederatie’ (Climbing and Mountain Sports federation). Specialised info about highland hiking and mountain climbing combined with gripping tales from climbers and hikers brought the public to a higher plane. "A successful cross-fertilisation," concluded Isabeau Vogeleer, co-ordinator of Mount Expo.