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Dinant

 

 

Location:
Dinant sparkles along the Meuse River in the province of Namur. It is about 40 miles south of Brussels and about 12 miles south of Namur, the regional capital.

 

 

Getting There:
Dinant, located 90 mn by train or just over an hour's drive from Brussels, sits on the banks of the Meuse River. The RaVel 2, a network of former canals that have been transformed into flat, smoothly paved routes for walkers and cyclists, follows the Meuse between Namur and Dinant.

 

Dinant Must-Sees

Bird's Eye View

The fortified Citadel was first built in the 11th century to protect the Meuse valley below. The Prince-Bishops of Liege rebuilt and enlarged it in 1530,  the French destroyed it in 1703 and it was later rebuilt in 1821. In its final transformation, the Citadel is now home to Dinant's Arms Museum.

A Perfect Picture

The Collegiate Church of Our Lady is a perfect sample of primary orgival architecture from the 13th century. This church features remarkable stained glass, including the large Ladon glass roof, one of the largest in Europe. Located at the foot of a cliff facing the Meuse River, the setting is spectacular. Every Sunday in July and August, a free organ concert is held at 4:30 pm.

Sound City

The House of Mr Sax is not a museum in the typical sense, but rather an exciting way of discovering the world of a multi-talented musician. Located in a building on the location where Adolphe Sax was born Antoine-Joseph on 6 November 1814, the center takes visitors through the invention of the saxophone in an original and fun setting.  The Pataphonia Centre is a space where everyday objects and materials become musical instruments. This unique instrument-arium, thought-up by instrument maker Max Vandervorst, is entertaining and accessible to all.

Major in Brewing

Maison Leffe, an informative and interactive museum dedicated to the history of one of the most recognizable Belgian Trappist beers dating back to 1240, employs a self-guided tour to teach visitors about the beer-making process, the life of a Trappist Monk, and the craftsmanship behind every bottle of Leffe. Finish the tour with a beer tasting.

Go on an Adventure

Three miles down the road from Dinant, the impetuous Lesse River joins the Meuse. Popular among canoeists, the Lesse, runs through the village of Anseremme, which welcomes these floating visitors with food, drink and a place to rest. Dinant Adventures also offers a wide range of exciting and challenging activities: rope bridges, nature walks, laser tag, cross country cycling, cable car, ziplines and much more! www.dinant-evasion.be. The local castles and gardens of Freyr, Annevoie and Veves offer breathtaking scenery and picture-perfect settings for a day outdoors.

Prepare to Board

Each year on August 15th, the city of Dinant, in keeping with Belgium's reputation for the quirky and unusual, hosts the Bathtub Regatta. The regatta highlights the city's joie de vivre and attracts as many as 25,000 visitors who watch this procession of bizarre boats racing down the Meuse River. In addition to bathtubs, visitors will see homemade rafts, floating waterslides and other curious boat-like creations.

Local Sweets

Sample the locals' pride and joy: the famous "couques de Dinant." This hard biscuit, with a honey-sweetened flavor, is imprinted with a carved wooden moulding before baking. Don't bite into this cookie, though. Instead, break off pieces and let it melt slowly in your mouth before chewing. www.couquesdedinant.com

 

Where to Eat in Dinant
Auberge de Bouvignies (Dinant)

Le Club Brasserie Templiere (Dinant)

La Couronne (Dinant)
Le Jardin de Fiorine (Dinant)

La Meunerie (Dinant)


Couleur Basilic (Rochefort near Dinant) Hostellerie Gilain * (Sorinnes near Dinant)

Hostellerie Vivendum(Sorinnes near Dinant)

Les 7 Meuses (Riviere-Profondeville near Dinant)

La Besace (Crupet near Dinant)

Le Comptoir du gout(Ciney near Dinant)

Le Fou Est Belge (Heure near Dinant) Le Grilladon (Annevoie near Dinant)

 

 

 

Other Places of Interest

Leffe Abbey

In 1152, Henry the Blind, Earl of Namur, gave the Church of Leffe to the Premonstratensian Order of Floreffe. The monastery that developed as a result became an abbey in 1200. It has survived its fair share of disasters over the years, having been reconstructed in the 17th and 18th centuries, and plundered by French revolutionaries in 1794. The present buildings were sold in 1816 and transformed into workshops, but in 1903 were purchased by the exiled French Premonstratensian Order and restored as an abbey.

 

Open on Wednesdays and Sundays, at 3 pm sharp - duration of the visit: 1h

Freyr Chateau and Gardens

Dating from the 18th century, the magnificent Renaissance style residence on the river, has a refined and cosmopolitan interior. The sweeping classical gardens, laid out in formal French style, are home to 300-year-old orange trees and orangeries that are among the oldest of the country.

 

Open every day but times change seasonally

The Chateau of Spontin

Fortified castle whose defence system is still visible together with gardens, the river "Bocq" and waterfalls. Rectangular donjon with a 2m50 thick wall, dating from 1289. Small entrance castle and wall with corner towers. Cellars from the 9th century and framework of the 17the century.


The castle is closed

The Veves Castle

The castle, composed of five magnificent towers, is perched dramatically on a rocky outcrop overlooking the picturesque village of Celles, which is ranked one of the "Most Beautiful Villages of Wallonia"


Open every day from April to October

River Cruises

Dinant Rail-bikes

Discover the pleasure of the railbike. Relax while pedaling one or two hours on the old railway along the picturesque valley of the Molignée.

Suggested Hotels

Suggested Restaurants

Tourist Office of Dinant

Map