Wallonia is the greenest part of the country with the lowest density of inhabitants. At the same time, Belgium is known as the country in the world with the largest number of “chateaux” per square kilometre!
Let’s target the best ones! The oldest forts are on the top of hills, such as the citadel of Namur, about an hour’s drive from Brussels. Then a little further along the Meuse valley we can discover one of the most beautiful gardens in the country: “Les Jardins d’Annevoie”. 250 years old, they reflect the Belgian approach of mixing the surrounding influences of French, Italian and English gardens.
On the banks of the Meuse, you can not only see numerous ruins of medieval castles but also a large number or aristocratic houses pretending to the same “chateau” status, though often dating from the end of the 19th century, the golden age of modern Belgium.
Next to Dinant, there is a very panoramic view over the Freÿr Castel located near the French border and representing their main aristocratic influence in the 17-18th centuries.
Getting further into the countryside, it does not take long to arrive in front of one of Belgium’s most emblematic vistas: the Castle of Vêves. For Instagram lovers this is a must.
Our route will then cross the upper part of the Ardennes called the Famennes and the Condroz, slightly hilly with very gently curved roads between farms, fields, and woods – some of the most pleasing scenery in the country, to arrive at Modave Castle, famous for its incredible history, lovely gardens, unique ceiling decorations, and multiple rooms with gorgeous furniture. It gives a clear indication how the noble people of the time were leading their daily lives and enjoying their properties.
Time: minimum of 9 hours departing from and returning to Brussels.
Potential visits to be added to the tour:
Annevoie Gardens: http://www.annevoie.be/
Modave Castle: http://www.modave-castle.be/