27 February 2024 ( 19 views )

Walzin Castle: Neo-Gothic Masterpiece of Belgium

Located in Dinant, Belgium, Walzin Castle is one of the masterpieces of Neo-Gothic tradition. It is on a cliffside with dark forests all around it, towering over the Lesse River in a foreboding fashion. The castle also looks over the valley that connects Dinant to France; it almost acts like a border control center. During the Middle Ages, the castle suffered a lot of damage and was home to invasions, conflicts, betrayals, and murder. Legends and myths surround the castle which adds a lot to its Gothic identity. Today, Walzin Castle is one of the largest and most popular castles in Belgium. However, due to private ownership, people cannot enter the castle. The area around the castle though is popular for trekking and kayaking activities due to its terrain and proximity to the Lesse.

Walzin Castle

Walzin Castle was built in the 11th century although it changed in appearance through the centuries. It served as protection and a defensive fort for Dinant. For a long time, Walzin was the only way to enter Dinant from the south. Therefore, it was a highly important structure for the Princedom of Liege.

Walzin Castle from above

In the 19th century, Walzin Castle was in a highly desperate shape. Especially, during the French Revolution, opposing forces nearly destroyed the castle and burnt all the books and records. The castle had no owners and had no chance of returning back to its former self. However, all changed when a baron bought the ruins in 1850. For 30 years, the baron funded architects and workers to rebuild the castle and make it a place worthy of its history.

Walzin Castle and the hill

The Baron succeeded and in the 20th century, his descendant another Baron, had people rebuild the castle once again. The current shape of the castle, its towers, exterior, and gardens are a result of this re-renovation in the 1900s. While the castle itself is not open to the public, visitors can visit and walk in the gardens and see it for themselves.

Walzin Castle and river
Walzin Castle profile
building from above
building and the river
building from below

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