The castles of Belgium include many architectural and historical gems. In fact, this European country has more castles per square mile than any other country, and it only gets better when you consider its vast amount of manors, citadels, and palaces. The Belgium castles come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and many are quite iconic. Whether they lie in ruins or have been lovingly restored, they provide testament to the feudalistic past of Europe and give Belgium tourists some very interesting places to explore.
Should you wish to visit a Belgian castle during your European escape, you will have many wonderful ones to choose from. No matter where you find yourself in the country, a tantalizing castle is likely to be close by. Just five miles south of the capital of Brussels, for example, you will find Beersel Castle. This thirteenth-century structure is among the best medieval castles in the land, and among its most impressive attributes are the tall and sturdy towers and the extra high walls. This delightful castle also comes complete with a moat and a drawbridge, only adding to its overall allure.
One of the other Belgium castles that you might move to the top of your list of places to visit is the Bouillon Castle. Found near the city of Dinant in the heavily forested Ardennes region, this castle has its roots in the eighth century. It is an especially old structure, and its position atop three rocky outcrops makes for a very scenic spread. The leader of the First Crusade, Godfrey of Bouillon, once called Bouillon Castle home, hence the name. On a tour, you can walk along the walls, inspect the dungeons, and pass through various chambers.
If you like your castles restored and well-adorned, then a trip to Beloeil Castle might be in order during your Belgium vacation. One of the largest Belgium castles, Beloeil Castle has served as the residence for the Princes of Ligne since the 1300s. It is surrounded by a moat and lovely French-style gardens, and among the things that you will find inside is an amazing art collection. The Baroque garden was designed in the 1660s.
No discussion about Belgium castles would be complete without mentioning Gravensteen Castle. Found in Ghent, this imposing compound from the Middle Ages served as the seat for the Counts of Flanders until the 1300s, after which it became a courthouse and then a prison. Due in part to its age, Gravensteen Castle eventually fell into a state of decay. It didn't help that homes were built against its walls and people were plundering the stones for other projects. A demolition project was planned in the late 1800s, but thankfully, the city of Ghent stepped in and saved this historic landmark. Gravensteen Castle has been repaired to sufficient extent, and among the highlights is the torture museum.
In addition to visiting castles like these during your Belgium vacation, you can hope to stay at a castle. There aren't exactly a lot of Belgium castle lodging options, but you might find something to suit your fancy. Perhaps a stay at the Harze Castle will be in order. Found in the Province of Liege, this castle turned conference center can be a great place to stay whether you are in the area for business or pleasure. Comfortable and well-equipped guest units await at Harze Castle, and there are facilities for meetings and other private events. A castle wedding can certainly make for an unforgettable marriage experience.