A weekend in Wallonia, the French Belgium

As often as we’ve visited Belgium, we’ve rarely ventured below the language border. You hear things about Wallonia—how it’s run down and dirty and no one speaks English, etc. I don’t know about all that. Come to think of it, I’ve heard people speak this way of “Walloon” towns that aren’t even in Wallonia. (Americans. No one said we were smart.) Anyway, it was distance, not opinions, that kept us away for so long.

Having lived in Europe for three years, I don’t often have those, “Wow, where are we?” moments. They came in Wallonia. I think I love it more than Flanders. The gray stone villages, beautiful countryside, rustic charm. Why’d we wait so long? And when can we go back?

We ventured to Chimay for the first-ever open brewery days, stayed just south of Namur in Profondeville and visited Maredsous and Dinant. We could have easily stayed several more days. Next time we will. In fact, I’m plotting our return as I type. Hmmm…school holiday next week. Bastogne or Rochefort maybe.

UPDATE: This weekend, September 8-9, is open monuments day in the Netherlands and Belgium. Thousands of historical sites, some not normally open to the public, will be granting FREE entry Saturday and Sunday. Looks like I’ll be going back sooner than planned. Now the difficult task of deciding where to go.

And check this out—a swimming pool made from a boat. Here’s a close up.

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