Yes, it’s (almost) summer holidays! 😊 Finally relaxing after a year of hard work, or a long school year. Time to make beautiful memories and cool photos!
Are you going on holiday to the Ardennes this summer, or maybe you want to go that way for a few days in between? Then we have put together 10 essential tips for you.
With these tips, you and your family are guaranteed to have a few fun-filled days. Because everyone will enjoy these fun things to do in the Ardennes: kids, mum and dad, even grandpa and grandma if they can come too…
1) Back to the Middle Ages
Durbuy’s historic centre is, in a word, fantastic! This medieval town centre with its beautiful pedestrian streets has hardly grown any larger in recent centuries and is truly authentic. The 17th- and 18th-century houses look magnificent. And the inhabitants, only a few hundred, go out of their way to please you in one of the good restaurants.
2) At full gallop
The Belgian Ardennes are particularly suitable for horseback ride in the forests. We take beautiful rides through the vast forests, small rivers, picturesque villages, meadows and varied hilly landscapes. There are rides for advanced and also for novice riders; there is a wide range on offer.
3) Among kings and famous composers
In the 19th century, Spa was one of the most important spas in Europe. The natural spring water has medicinal properties that were already known in the 16th century. Kings, composers and other famous people came here to take cures. In addition, the city is of course known for the bottled water that comes from there. The old spa buildings can still be seen and the town itself is more than worth a visit!
4) Blonde, brown, double or triple?
If you like a good Belgian beer, the Ardennes is the right place. The Ardennes has many local breweries brewing great beers. Blonde, brown, double or triple. There is bound to be one that tastes good to you. The nice thing is that you can visit many of these breweries. Take a guided tour, learn about the brewing process and taste the end result of all this careful brewing! Well-known are Achouffe Brewery and Orval Abbey. A bite to eat in the accompanying brasserie is also highly recommended.
5) Burning calves
For agile types, the Ardennes is an ideal holiday spot. Hiking, cycling, kayaking, mountainbiking. There are several routes for all levels. For more experienced hikers, there are beautiful climbing and scrambling trails that lead through beautiful nature. Distances range from a single hour of hiking to long day trips. The true cycling fanatic can indulge in impossible gradients and burning calves here.
6) Coo thinks of the little ones
The Coo waterfalls are one of the most famous attractions in the Ardennes. These waterfalls in the Amblève river have been a major attraction for tourists for many years. And although the waterfalls can still be admired in all their glory, these days they are overshadowed by the Plopsa COO located on the banks. At this theme park for the little ones, you can swing and wave with Bumba, Piet Piraat and Mega Mindy. You’ll find fairground rides, bouncy castles, a wildlife park and beautiful lookout point.
7) In La Roche, everything comes together
La Roche is one of the most visited towns in the Ardennes. It is a charming town from where you can easily explore the beautiful surroundings. La Roche is strategically located in a bend of the river Ourthe. The La Roche castle has dominated the area since the Middle Ages. The ruins of the castle can still be visited. For the sporty, many walks, mountain bike routes and kayaking trips start here.
8) Chocolate tasting
In Samrée, you can catch a guided tour at artisan chocolate factory Cyril Chocolat. The explanations by owner Yves and the many tastings of chocolate are a highlight of your day. Yves talks passionately and with flair about the craft of chocolate making. In between, you get to taste all kinds of chocolate delicacies.
9) Simple happiness
Cyclists and hikers get happy on the ‘ravel’ trails of the Ardennes. RAVeL (Réseau Autonome de Voies Lentes, or ‘slow roads’ for non-motorised traffic) uses more than 1,300 km of old towpaths and train beds.
10) Quiet villages
In 1994, ‘The Most Beautiful Villages of Wallonia’ saw the light of day, based on the existing initiative ‘The Most Beautiful Villages of France’. An excellent idea because the Belgian Ardennes is home to some beautiful villages. Be pleasantly surprised by Celles, Chiny, Houffalize or Han-sur-Less and 20 other gems.
So for a successful holiday, you don’t have to go far. Holidays sometimes mean enjoying beautiful places nearby, like the Belgian Ardennes!