If you are looking for ideas on what to do on a day off in Belgium, then you should really consider the Domaine de Chevetogne in the Province of Namur.
This is an enormous park just one hour drive away from Brussels. In the heart of the Ardennes, this park is a must not only for parents with children (though the number of activities which you can find here is enough to keep them busy for more than a day), but also for those who would like to be close to nature in a really calm and picturesque environment.
Whether you want a place to cook outdoors (there are dedicated barbecue areas), just a walk in the countryside, bird watching, having lunch or dinner in an idyllic environment or else enjoying a day out with the kids, this is a park really worth visiting.
In warm weather, if you are going with children, it’s advisable to take a change of clothes or bathing costume given there is a playground with a sandy pool of shallow water which will keep them busy for quite a while. This is just one of the many playgrounds in different areas of the park all with specific themes and aimed at children of different ages.
There are two lakes where you can either take a rowing boat or an Indian canoe. Once you pay the entrance fee, you can use all the amenities of the park (boats, mini-golf, small train going around the park) for free.
There is a farm for children, a swimming pool, mini-golf, tennis courts, basketball courts as well as a number of places to eat.
One restaurant, the Les Rhodos (see photo) has accommodation in the form of a small hotel. But there is also a camping area, family chalets as well as farm lodging. The setting of Les Rhodos is idyllic as it overlooks a perfectly kept garden and the menu looks interesting though we only walked past it in the morning therefore we did not have the time to try it out.
The park also has an equestrian centre for horse riding and even pony riding for beginners and children.
Entrance fee is 10 euros per person while children under the age of 6 go in free.
- Take a change of clothes for children particularly if its a hot day.
- Don’t underestimate the size of the park. You will walk a lot and young children may find it exhausting so you can take the train which goes around the park every half an hour.
- Try the beers of the Domaine.
- Make sure you check which restaurants are open on the day you visit. The one we wanted to go was closed on the Monday.
- It is also an excellent place for a picnic or outdoor barbecue with special designated areas.