Belgium isn’t all billiard-table flat. Drive south-east and shift the gearbox up and down for an enervating tour of the gloriously wooded Ardennes.
Looking for a motoring holiday with a difference, that’s easy to access in a place which is full of people who speak pretty good English and yet is very much abroad?
Welcome, then, to the delightful Ardennes hills of Wallonia, in the South of Belgium.
No region of comparable size offers so much variety – of scenery, of culture and of activities – and all of it within a few hours’ easy drive of the Channel ports. You can pack a staggering amount of memories into a weekend here but there’ll be plenty still on offer to make you wish you’d made it a week-long visit instead.
There follows a few suggestions and itineraries.
Have a safe trip
Discover 6 incredible routes. Hit the road, dig deep and turn back time!
1. Tournai to Dinant | Hit the Road
- What to see? Tournai’s UNESCO-worthy belfry and cathedral, the lakes at Cerfontaine, the Château in Beloeil and Hitler’s hideaway in Brûly-de-Pesche.
- Where to drive? The N598 over the tranquil lakes, the N59 to sample Wallonia’s customary mix of open fields and close-set villages, the roads around Brûly for compact twists in a tunnel of green.
2. Tournai to Marche-en-Famenne | Dig Deep
- What to see? Mahymobiles for an excellent car collection, full of unrestored and premium vintage machines, the expansive Pairi Daiza zoo, a curious boat lift and a Huyssens baroque church in Namur.
- Where to drive? The N947 outside Namur for thrills and the roads twisting up to the citadel for grandeur, unparalleled views and cobblestones.
3. Dinant to Dinant | Rounded Education
- What to see? Château de Freÿr and its exacting gardens, bijoux villages in Vresse and Redu, Ardennes panoramas in Rochehaut and Botassart.
- Where to drive? The N935 to Membre, the N893 to Poupehan, the N810 to Bouillon – each offers the perfect mix of technical twists and dramatic scenery.
4. Bastogne to Malmedy | Ardennes Explorer
- What to see? Bastogne’s museums and memorials for Battle of the Bulge history, Nisramont for natural tranquillity, Spa for the spa and Stavelot for top-end race cars.
- Where to drive? Down the N616 for Ardennes isolation, over the N68 for cinematic twists and around the N62C to experience Spa’s racing history.
5. Mons to La Roche-en-Ardennes | Military Memories
- What to see? The touching Memorial Museum in Mons, Hotton’s war cemetery, twin tanks and the jam-packed Museum of the Battle of the Ardennes.
- Where to drive? The N86 south through Dinant for calming riverside views; the N841 and N89 for a swelling, thunderclap thrill into La Roche.
6. Mons to Dinant | Turn Back Time
- What to see? Waterloo, the memorial museum and Hougoumont Farm are a must, as is the ruined abbey at Villers and the still-standing citadel of Namur.
- Where to drive? The meandering road to Villers for a cruise, the challenging N904 to Namur for fun and the fast N275 for a challenge.
Leaf through our brochure 'Heading for the Hills' for more information on Motoring Holiday With a Difference
Heading for the Hills in Southern Belgium