Belgium: 6 places to visit in Wallonia region

There are two regions in Belgium: Wallonia with its French culture, and Flanders with the Dutch impact. When we arrived to Belgium and found our temporary home in Wallonia, we naturally decided that our wanderings in Belgium will start from our region. Now it is more than two months and we, Dear Reader, can already tell you quite a lot of place to visit here. 

So Wallonia is the French-speaking region in the Southern Belgium, which border with France, Luxembourg and Germany. Region is famous for Renaissance architecture, medieval towns and its beer.

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Ha! Basically, I just told you the things that Belgium generally is famous for So, I think, it would be better for me not to jabber, but move straight to the point. Is Wallonia a region that should be worth your attention? Yes! Are there places to see and visit? A lot!

Let’s start with 6 places that we enjoyed to discover the most until now.

Villers Abey

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Belgium is abbey-country – there are hundreds of them in this small country. And they all are entirely unique! Villers Abbey is a perfect destination for those who love abandoned places.

This place is a preserved ruins of an ancient abbey built in 12h century that occupies more than 30 hectares. It’s like a beautiful park made in the territory of historically significant and majestic ruins. In addition to this, it is an interesting and nice place for a day trip. And as all other Belgian abbeys, this one is also famous for its beer: it can be tasted in centuries old tavern in front of the ruins. However, it’s noteworthy that for adults entrance costs nearly 10 euros.

Jehay-Bodegnée Castle

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Beautiful facade of Jehay-Bodegnée!

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Jehay-Bodegnée is a beautiful Medieval castle that dates back to 16th century. Territory of the castle covers nearly 9 hectares1, and is normally surrounded by water. However, sadly, we visited Jehay-Bodegnée when it was under construction, and we didn’t got a chance to see it at its best. But I bet it looks super-spectacular!

Castle is located outside the town, and as it is surrounded by water, it can be reach through a small bridge. Castle’s buildings are shaped in a rectangular form with a beautiful and rich gardens in the middle. While walking around in Jehay-Bodegnée territory you can find various types of sights to see: from bizarre sculptures to astonishing buildings.

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Sadly, Jehay-Bodegnée was under construction.

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Despite being under construction, castle left a wonderful impression to us. I can’t even imagine how cool should it look like when everything is perfectly restored and renewed! It is definitely the place that is worth your afternoon in Belgium.

Dinant

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Dinant is one of the most beautiful towns that we have discovered not only in Wallonia, but in whole Belgium so far. It is a small town in Southern part of Belgium, located on the beautiful shores of River Meuse. Its landscape is quite extraordinary for this kind of flat country like Belgium. Dinant is surrounded by quite high sharp rocks, which, as I see it, gives town half of its charm.

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In spite of the beautiful landscape, Dinant has to offer variety of attractions to see and to experience. Firstly, Dinant is a birthplace of Mr. Adolphe Sax, the inventor of saxophone. So everywhere you turn, you will find something to do with that instrument. Secondly, city holds a spectacular Notre-Dame Cathedral from which you can reach the third point of interest – Citadelle of Dinant. Citadelle is located on the highest point of the city, from where you can not only explore town’s history, but also admire Dinant from up above.

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All in all, Dinant is one of the top destinations for a day trip in Belgium!

Floreffe

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Floreffe is another beautiful abbey-town located on the shores of Sambre river. This small town has two main attractions that can be easily found on the hill above the river. It is medieval abbey and its beer.

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The territory of Floreffe Abbey is a wonderful destination for an afternoon trip. There are some really beautiful spots to enjoy the picturesque view. However, as usual if you want to enter historic buildings, you will have to pay nearly 10 euros for the entrance ticket.

Nivelles

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Amazing church in Nivelles!

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Nivelles is a small town in central part of the country and it is a nice destination for an afternoon trip. Town has long history dated back to 4000 BC, but sights that are the most interesting for an eyes of town guests was built around 13th century. The thing that charmed us there was Collegiate Church of Saint Gertrude, which looks like a castle from the front and church from the back. It makes main square of Nivelles a nice place to have a lunch in.

Durbuy

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If Dinant was one of the most beautiful, when Durbuy is definitely THE MOST beautiful city that we have discovered in Belgium. Though, there is only 14 streets in this city, we got lost after 5 minutes in the city. Everything is because of its charm! Except the beautiful Durbuy castle located on the bank of Ourthe river, and elegant Topiary Park, there aren’t any specific sights to name. The things that makes Durbuy exceptional are its old-stone streets and houses. Town looks like straight from the Medieval times!

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What is more, Durbuy has a title of being the smallest city in the world. As it turned out, in the Medieval Ages ‘city’ title was given just to those towns who had city walls, city jurisdiction, and similar institutions. As Durbuy had it, it gained a city status. But as it was (and is!) a very small town/city, it additionally achieved title of ‘the smallest’ city in the world.

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River Ourthe!

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If you, Dear Reader, rely on our taste, then you have to mark Durbuy as a number one destination in Wallonia. You definitely have to feel the atmosphere that could only be found in Durbuy. 


So what do you think about Wallonia from this list of places to see? Does it seem interesting to you? If yes, I promise that we will come back with a longer one! 

Yours, L. 

  1. 22 acres.