WOW....How did I miss this one.
I've ridden a fair amount in Wallonia and you have to watch out a lot
I totally agree with you but you do not actually have to ride those roads at all. There are still hundreds of miles if not thousands, of roads that are basically agricultural roads made of concrete in Limburg and the Northern part of Wallonia alone. You'll be riding across the fields, enjoy some fabulous scenery (if you have an eye for it), won't have to worry about cars or traffic signs, just ride and enjoy.
Then there are the RAVELS, kind of recycled old railway beds turned into to marvellous cycling tracks and so on ad infinitum.
And I'm only just describing my "terrain de jeu". Go ride along the coast line, it's flat as a pancake but mind the wind etc, etc...
Same goes for our neighbours in Holland really.
I think Prendrefeu has nailed it with his usual not to be overlooked post. Belgium is at the heart of cycling. We have quite a few Australians and Kiwi's living and working here and by working I do mean riding a bike for living.
Cycling, and I mean any kind of cycling has been the most popular sport here for a few centuries. Belgium not only breathes cycling, it actually is cycling at its very core.
While I can explain why this has taken on such a dimension it is beyond the scope of the TS question , so I'll refrain.
Nonetheless, if TS should ever come to Belgium to ride his bike I'll happily show him not only Flanders Fields but the Ardennes as well as anything inbetween. I'm sure he'll change his mind after an hour or two.
Belgium is cycling, soccer, beer brewing, probably the best food in the world too, add beer and chocolate as well. We're not chauvinistic about it at all but once you're here you'll notice a small country with a very big heart.