Fishing in Belgium : a useful guide for newcomers and foreigners (Part 1. Wallonia)
By Romain on 31.03.2016 in Fishing locations
Several people contacted our Rodtrip crew, to ask information about the Belgium fishing regulations, and how to procure fishing licences. Despite being a small country , one can easily get confused because of our complicated fishing regulations.
First of all, you must be aware that our country has two major regions : Wallonia (Wallonie / french) and Flanders (Vlaanderen / Dutch). To keep it simple we even got three national languages : French, Dutch and German. So we can understand the confusion of our fellow anglers who try to find out how things are managed.
We’ll try to give you a quick and easy, but complete view for the Wallonia region. We’ll talk about how to buy your license, and of course where and when you can fish.
For the Wallonia region :
First of all, it’s mandatory to buy a fishing license of the Wallonia region. It’s quite easy because you can either buy it on the internet on this site, or you can buy one in a postal office in the Wallonia region.
You can choose between two licences:
License A : it allows you to fish with maximum two rods, only from the bank
License B : it allows you to fish with one or two rods, either from the bank, boat, fishing platforms, or more important in our case : wading
Each of these two licences allow you to fish anywhere (mostly second class watersystems) in the Wallonia region. So it’s mandatory to have at least one of these two licences. With this license in your possession you can fish all second class waters, or like we call it : ‘banal’ waters.
We list them hereunder :
- The Lys river
- All canals: L’Espierres, Ath-Blaton, Nimy-Blaton, Antoing-Baton, Charlerois-Bruxelles, canal du centre, canal Albert.
- The Escaut or Schelde river (except its feeder streams)
- The Dender river downstream the confluence of the eastern and western river (city of Ath).
- The canalised part of the Haine river
- The Sambre river.
- The Eau d’Heure lakes .
- The Meuse or Maas River from Liège till the bridge of Coronmeuse
- The Semois river downstream the mill of Deleau at the village of Herbeumont
- The Ourthe river downstream from the Nisramont dam.
- The Amblève river downstream of the Remouchamps bridge.
- The Lesse river downstream of the first dam
The rest of the rivers are under private management of a fishing club. You’ll need an extra license from them to allow you to fish the stretch they manage.
If we take as an example the Vesdre river, which I particularly like, is managed by three different clubs, each owning a stretch.
To keep it simple, and not bother you with city names, just know that the river is devided in three stretches from the lower to the higher part.
Which means of course that you’ll have to make sure you buy the right licence for the area you plan to fish.
For the upper part : the Wallonia region licence + the licence of the LRPPE fishing club
For the middle part : the Wallonia region licence + the licence of the RAPP fishing club
For the lower part : the Wallonia river license + the licence of the VPN fishing club
So this was an example to show you what you need, whenever you choose to fish the Vesdre…
A practical aid to help you find out, is to check this link to find out which fishing clubs manage which rivers. Do also note that we’ve got a closing season for our beloved aquatic friends.
We’ll list the most popular species :
Trout : from October 1st until the third Saturday of March
Grayling : from the third Saturday of March until the first Saturday of June
Pike : from January 1st until the first Saturday of June
Do also check this site go to ‘périodes d’ouverture’.
So to end with a simple advice, you should in any case buy the Wallonia region licence, and buy an extra one locally from the managing fishing club which manages the river you chose.
If ever, you should hesitate about your fishing licences, you can always ask me on Facebook.