Hiking in Belgium

Walking around Lavaux-Sainte-Anne

A pleasant 12 km circular walk starting from the Castle of Lavaux-Sainte-Anne

The tiny village of Lavaux-Sainte-Anne, near Rochefort in the province of Namur, is famous for its beautiful and well-maintained castle, the first stones of which were laid in 1450. The castle in turn is famous for being a major heritage site of Wallonia. Also, readers who are tennis fans might be interested to know that the castle is where Justine Henin married in 2002.

Lavaux-Sainte-Anne was the destination last Sunday for me and my youngest daughter Suzanna. We had planned a 12 km walk in the morning, and a visit to the cooler castle in the afternoon when temperatures were due to rise to 27°C. This post is about the walk; more of the castle later.

We parked in the castle’s free car park and set off, following the route clockwise:

LSA map5

You can download the route here from RouteYou. Here you can get the GPX file for your GPS device.

As you can see from the map, it has a nice combination of open fields and hills, with some wooded areas that offered some pleasant shade as the temperature rose. I indicate an alternative path on the map because the footpath was flooded. If this is the case, just walk uphill about ten metres, exactly where the arrow is pointing. You will come to a fence. Walk along the fence parallel to the footpath and you will be OK (see photo below).

Lavaux-Saint-anne (18)
The (flooded) footpath is on your right. Instead, walk alongside the fence to the left

Highly recommended

The walk is 12 km so can be completed in a morning. We took our time and enjoyed a leisurely picnic sitting on the bridge over the La Wimbe. The route has a slight climb but nothing too strenuous.

LSA map3

All in all, this is a highly recommended walk which, combined with a visit to the castle, made a full and very enjoyable day out for Suzanna and I.

I will write about the Castle of Lavaux-Sainte-Anne in my next post.


The Orchid Man, Roger Grier

I would just like to pay tribute to someone I never met but whose knowledge of wild orchids was immense. He has helped many people over many years identify wild orchids, either in the field or via photos sent by email.

I recently asked him to confirm identification of the orchid above, and was upset to hear from his wife Mary that Roger passed away on 2nd December 2017, aged 80.

However, Mary herself confirmed it was an Early Marsh Orchid. She also sent me a poem that Roger had written about marsh orchids. In memory of Roger, and as a thank you to all the people he has inspired over the years, I reprint it below:

Now this orchid is one of my favourites

It ‘stands-out’ from all the rest

Its colours are so vibrant

No wonder it’s one of the best

It does stand very upright

Its leaves are upright too

Do take notice of the stem

Hollow all the way through

Tiz found in bogs and damp places

There may be many… or just a few

Pay attention to the colours

Some are nearly white, tiz true

It’s one of the four ‘Dactly’ orchids

And there be three others

They do a lot of courting

Don’t ask who be their Mothers

The hybrids that they produce

Are fabulous and brash

Don’t ever bet on their parents

Cos you’re sure to lose your cash

The three others that make up this group

Contribute to my ‘Fab Four’

Their offspring are mind boggling

But beautiful for sure

But the pure Early Marsh

Is a pleasure to be seen

It stands out from all the rest

Its foliage that ‘special green’

Categories: Hiking in Belgium, Namur

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19 replies »

  1. Looks like a lovely area around there. So, yet another ‘proud daddy walk’; I hope to resume mine soon. Saw quite a few wild orchids on my hike in the Hunsrück last week. Regards!

  2. Such beauty you encountered on your walk. That palomino would have enchanted me too – always wanted a palomino horse when I was a kid. (I ride like a drunken sailor, but still…) I doubt I could make such a walk in a morning – I’d be stopping to investigate everything. Thanks for taking me along, Denzil.

    • A pure black stallion was always my dream Sharon (Zorro!). But actually I’ve never ridden. Prefer to keep my feet on the ground. Thanks for stopping by.

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