As we have discussed this not once, Belgium is an architecture lover’s dream. Besides the North Sea, there is nothing exceptional about the nature here. And yet, from time to time we manage to find a place where we feel so peaceful and relaxed that those feelings truly meet the meaning of what the nature getaway is. First, it was the town of Durbuy and its surroundings. Then – our journey around the Walzin Castle. And now, on our way back from Paris, we discovered one more small town with the surroundings green and peaceful like none the others in Belgium. It is the town of Bouillon and like the previous two locations, it is also situated in the picturesque region of Belgian Ardennes!
Hugged by the River Semois
To be fair, we have heard about Bouillon not once. We knew about its existence for some time now but somehow didn’t manage to plan a trip there. And just when we thought that we will probably leave Belgium without visiting this place, it jumped in front of our car when we were driving back to our temporary home in the middle of Belgium after an active weekend in Paris. It was such a lovely and still an early evening that we decided to make a detour.
We found ourselves in a little town situated in the sharp bend of the river Semois. With only about 5 thousand residents, the town lies in the Walloon Region at the Belgium-France border and not far away from the one with Luxembourg.
Starting straight from the riverside, which is the center of the city, streets of Bouillon climb up a hill and stops at a strong-looking medieval castle on the top of the town. While standing on the hill next to the Bouillon Castle you can see two sides of the city and they both are hugged by the river Semois.
First one is the heart of the city – steep and narrow streets surrounding elegantly looking Church of St Peter and St Paul. The second side of the city is the green and picturesque hills along the peacefully floating river with a romantic medieval bridge over it. And, actually, this view from the top of the castle is the one to conclude what Bouillon is. It is a lovely little town in the middle of the richest natural area in whole Belgium.
Up a Hill For a Perfect View
One could wander around Bouillon for weeks, and still discover lovely forest paths to cross. This little town is located in the hilly and richly green region of Ardennes which covers not only part of Belgium, but also parts of Luxembourg and France. What is more, it is a hiking paradise for hikers from all around the neighboring regions. So, this makes Bouillon a peaceful resort town with a long list of nature experiences that its visitor can take.
Nonetheless, among all those options you can take, there is this one that is a must-see in Bouillon. It is a forest path up a hill. Up a hill to the panoramic 380-meter-high watchtower! This wooden belvédère is built in front of the bend of the river Semois and is definitely the best place to enjoy a panoramic view to Bouillon and its exceptional landscape.
A Place to Recharge
Our stay in Bouillon wasn’t long, just a several hours of wanderings. What is more, while climbing to the top of the belvédère we faced an unpleasant accident – our camera slipped off and, sadly, the lens got broken 1. And though after this our mood dropped off badly, at the end of the day we noticed that we felt quite relaxed and recharged after a weekend in such a busy and loud city as Paris. And we came to the conclusion, that the reason of this is those two hours in Bouillon that made us forget the crowds in the squares and streets of the vibrant Paris.
With that being said, for us Bouillon will always be this place perfect place for a relaxing nature getaway in Belgium. Even a short stop here, Dear Reader, will be the thing that you needed for a long time!