What a charming hotel!!!!! What an atmosphere!!!!!! What a magnificent bed!!!!!!!
And what a marvellous day is waiting for us!!!!!!
Today we will go north towards Dinant, crossing immense forests and agricultural landscapes and passing by rivers and characteristic Walloon villages.
After checking our car, kissing our partner and thinking how beautiful life is and how lucky we are, we follow the signs towards Bouillon (initially N83 and then N89). Yes, I know, we have already been there but this is the fastest way to arrive to Beauraing, our first stop. The road is incredibly straight, there is not even a slight turn for many many kilometres, so you ‘ll have the opportunity to admire the landscape and the enormous trees.
About a km before Menuchenet, we leave N89 and we catch the N95 or Rue de Dinant. Green colour is omnipresent, alternating with meadows where brown coloured cows are grazing. I don´t know why, but I think that Belgian cows are more beautiful than others. They have more peculiar colours (maybe the breed) and they look cleaner (I imagine that the climate is not the best for the usual flies that surround the bovids). Have in mind that the cows in Belgium seem to be free, but they are not. The majority of fields has a just visible fence, but it is electric and provokes a light shock if you touch it. So if you wanna cut a mushroom and enter the field, beware of the fence, it is more dangerous than the usually peaceful cows.
Staring at cows and forests we arrive at Bièvre, where we can drink a cup of coffee or eat a snack, if we want. There is a friterie about a kilometre before Bièvre. Have I told you about friteries?
ΝΟΟΟΟ? Fritteries are the Belgian fast foods, supposed to be specialized in fried potatoes and generally fried things. Belgians insist that the best fried potatoes are made by them, so they refuse to call them French fries but just “frites”. You can find them everywhere even if you are blind, their characteristic smell will guide you to them. I understand that you have high expectations tasting the potatoes with some 10 sauces available in each shop, but personally I found them as all the other fried potatoes I have eaten in my life.
How did you find the Belgian potatoes? You feel thirsty? It is normal, as they contain a descent amount of salt. You can calm your thirst and move a little at the village, which has a nice centre and many “boulangeries” to drink a coffee and eat a magnificent Belgian croissant.
I don´ t know why, bur Bièvre brings me in mind the beautiful US towns, which we see on American movies. Broad streets, very clean, bicycle roads, open yards, immense green, calm and peace everywhere.
After a few kms we enter the deep forest. The sense is incredible, the views difficult to describe and the nature’s aroma (especially if it is raining, it happens very often) breathtaking. I had the luck to live in the area for some months and I will never forget itineraries like this we actually do. During the autumn the palette of the colours is infinite. Green, yellow, grey, brown and red in all of their shadings.
Do you wanna see where your friends lived? And how stupid they are, returning back to Greece? Leave the road and follow the signs towards our beloved Vencimont. Pass through small lakes, beautiful farm houses and arrive at a peaceful village, that we will never forget.
“No time to cry” as my favs Sisters of Mercy sing, but to go on. Straight to Beauraing, we have to be on time to visit the Sanctuary of our Lady, a place where many religious Belgians visit each week end. Near the church we can find restos, taverns and souvenir shops but better go at the center of the town where we can find better and cheaper restos. There is also a Greek restaurant Dionysos, just say you are friends of DG and you will have extra care.
Take the road towards Hastière Lavaux, the itinerary is not something special, but Hastière is very beautiful. It is worth going. On the banks of the river Meuse there is a touristic centre which attracts many people, especially during summer.
You must feel tired. If not, you can make one more stop moving towards Dinant at Anseremme to exercise your skills in kayak and follow a magnificent itinerary in a virgin protected territory.
Otherwise, keep going to Dinant, find an hotel and rest, because Dinant is one of the most beautiful towns ever seen and also the town where the inventor of saxophone was born and where the worldwide known beer Leffe is made.
(to be continued)