Friday, 30 August 2013

A walk round Namur

Namur is dominated by an immense citadel, perched on the cliff above the river Meuse.

There are extensive views up and down the river.
Its easy to see why, in this frequently war-torn part of central Europe,
that the King decided to build this immense fortress..

The old castle fortifications were swallowed up by Vauban's new ditches, tunnels and walls..
The citadel is so enormous that it took us a good 2 hours just to walk round the walls
and read all the information boards.
Eventually we made our way out onto a huge, cliff top parade ground.
This area was used by the military and the town for sports, royal visits and other
out door entertainments.
This stadium was built around the end of the 19th Century to give a commanding view over the arena.  I was fascinated by the building because it is basically a multi-purpose, dual faceted structure.  The other side was an outdoor theatre.  Sadly the whole building is suffering from age and neglect and it was difficult to take photos of the theatre side.  There's an auditorium of concrete steps and even some little gothic ticket booth and entrance gates.  I love this kind of quirky, unexpected stuff!
Beyond the parade ground complex there's a further palace - now a really beautiful hotel.
They have a really talented gardener who has been organising the grounds through scent, colour and mood.  It's a beautiful place and completely free to anyone who wants to wander round.

Eventually hunger got the better of us and, about 4 hours after we'd climbed up into the citadel, we walked back down into town.

Namur does street cafes and squares really well.  There was lots of choice for the starving explorers!

Two huge pizzas later, we had the energy to start exploring one of the churches of the town...
This ornate, Baroque church replaced an earlier medieval one (which had presumably suffered during one of the many periods of fighting in the region)

It was as spectacular on the inside, as it was on the outside.

The carving were heavy and detailed..

And the sunlight fell just right for me to be able to take this picture...

For me, this was probably the best photo of the holiday.
I am REALLY pleased with it!
(An hour or so later Mark received his 'best car compliment' of the holiday, when she was described by a Belgian Aston Martin owner as an 'objet d'art'.  He was SO chuffed!  All in all, a great day out!)


  1. That does sound like a great day - you got so lucky with the light for your last photo. An interesting post, those buildings are great!

  2. I am so glad you can do these jaunts!!! So much walking--I use to, but can't anymore, but will remember all my life the wonderful sights and travels I got to experience. Two large pizza's? Here, a large pizza has 8 slices--it lasts me 4 meals :-)

  3. Namur looks an attractive and interesting place, the walk around the citadel walls must have given you some spectacular views.

  4. Such wonderful views from the citadel, and an interesting day out. I can see why that last photo is your favourite.

  5. I love touring Germany with you! It's been 17 years since I visited much of the places you have been to this year. Ah happy memories! Thanks for letting us share your experiences x

  6. Absolutely AMAZING! I would love to visit, I love seeing where other people go as it opens so many doors for me that I didn't even know existed...
    Have a wonderful Sunday,

  7. Absolutely AMAZING! I would love to visit, I love seeing where other people go as it opens so many doors for me that I didn't even know existed...
    Have a wonderful Sunday,

  8. Just catching up on posts I missed while I was away. It looks like you had a wonderful trip (apart from the claustrophobic room!) and I've enjoyed reading about it and seeing the photos.

  9. What a lovely place to visit. So many great photos!

  10. Lovely post and photos. These historic buildings are just amazing and I just love to visit them.
    Patricia x

  11. Namur looks like an interesting place to visit with those great views of the river from the citadel. Getting compliments from fellow sports car owners along the way was a nice experience and I can see why you're pleased with the last photo with the light just right to get a good result. I hope the new term get off to a good start and your 'new term resolutions' help in the days ahead.