- Park (castles)
- Architectural heritage
- Museum & discovery
Built in the 14th century, this massive turreted chateau is surrounded by a wide moat connected to a series of lakes and channels which wind through one of the largest and most ornate French-style gardens in Belgium. Even better: you can jump on a small train to enjoy them in the most relaxing way.
This stunning building was from the 14th century the residence of the Princes de Ligne, one of the oldest Belgian noble families. The recently restored interior of the castle houses a rare collection of paintings from the 15th to the 19th centuries and an outstanding library of more than 20,000 books (from the invention of the printing press to the modern days). Look closely at the antique furniture, an elegant sample of work by the best French cabinet workers of the 17th and 18th century. The paintings mostly stage the family members having lived in the castle, thus retracing important chapters of their life.
The carefully maintained formal gardens, which extend for more than 25 hectares, reflect the changing idiosyncratic tastes of the nobility over the years. The boulingrin – a corruption of the English phrase bowling green – is a wide area of grass once used for games and theatrical productions written by the Princes of the 17th century and close by the Rieu d’Amour is a small folly of half-buried Greek columns created by Prince Charles-Joseph in the 18th century.
Today the castle hosts one of the largest classical music festivals in Belgium (Les Musicales) in August when more than 15,000 music lovers stroll between orchestras and chamber music ensembles playing on stages in the chateau and gardens. It also is known for prestigious events such as its Amaryllis competition.
April-June and September: weekends and public holidays, 1 to 6 pm
July-August: every day, 1 to 6 pm
April to October: every day, 10 am to 6 pm
- Training materials provided
- Car parking