Domein Waterloo

Waterloo en Domein 1815 België in 12 tips

Weekend or holiday in Wallonia? Waterloo Belgium is the landmark of Walloon Brabant. Close to Brussels, less than a 3-hour drive from Amsterdam, Waterloo offers a fascinating mix of history and beautiful landscapes. This is what to see and do in Waterloo and Domain 1815 Belgium in 12 tips.

What happened in Waterloo?

On the morning of June 18, 1815, Napoleon marched with his troops towards Brussels to conquer the city. How did the Battle of Waterloo proceed? Napoleon is awaited around Waterloo by the English, German, Belgian and Dutch coalition armies. With the result? More than twenty thousand men died that day. The curtain falls for Bonaparte for good. France loses its position as a great power in Europe: a turning point in history. Would you like to ‘explore’ this history? Visit the Domain of Waterloo in Walloon Brabant.

Domain of the Battle of Waterloo 1815

What is there to see and do in Domain 1815? The Domain of the battlefield at Waterloo , is like a time warp in the time of Napoleon and… ABBA? Yes! Because the museum is temporarily (see the website for times) the setting of an ABBA exhibition. Where Napoleon found his Waterloo, ABBA won the Eurovision Song Contest with the song of the same name.

The song symbolizes a fatal love. The exhibition celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first ABBA hit Waterloo. Colorful costumes, records and ABBA memorabilia make this exhibition a small party. Highlights of this site? The Domain of the Battle of Waterloo 1815 consists of 7 (wheelchair-friendly) highlights spread over 20 hectares. Take a walk along these 4 of the 7 historical hotspots.

From battle to tourist attraction

In the summer, ‘reconstruction performances’ and workshops are also given at Domain Waterloo. It is precisely these kinds of things that give more control over the complete story. But above all, make the museum a true experience. Although the dividing line between battle and entertainment is somewhat thin…The place where a fierce battle once raged has become a tourist attraction.

The Lion of Waterloo

Photo: Mayumi Maciel

The Lion and the Panorama

The highlight for many of Domain 1815 Waterloo is the Lion . This hill in the shape of a pyramid can be seen from afar. Climb the Lion? 226 steps lead to the memorial monument with a lion: the symbol of victory over the French monarchy. On top of Lion Hill, a panoramic view of the battlefield and the surrounding area awaits. Even on a rainy day – such as during the battle – la Butte du Lion impresses. The Panorama (1912): a kind of Panorama Mesdag painting but with battle scenes is also impressive.

Hougoumont farm

The Hougoumont Farm is located near the Leeuw : the place of ’the battle within the battle’. Around this impressive castle farm, the French troops were trapped like rats and defeated in a bloody battle. Hoeve Hougoumont has largely gone up in smoke. It is said that the flames left the church below in the middle of the farm untouched. A miracle.

Church in the Hougoumont farm

Church in Hoeve Hougoumont

Memorial Museum

The heart of the Domain is the Memorial Museum. A blood-curdling 3D film gives a good idea of ​​the battle. In any case, the various objects in the museum provide more context to the work. The 3D film is not suitable for young children. Would you rather get a vivid picture of things like I do? Book a tour, or rather a walking tour. Full of verve and in full regalia, a guide will guide you through the entire Waterloo history. To top it all off? A weapons demonstration.

  • Practical information for a visit: a ticket for the Domain 1819 costs around 30 euros. Are individual tickets for the Lion also available? No. Tip: dogs are allowed on site, so you can walk with a view of the Lion, but you cannot climb the Lion or visit the museum with a dog.

more Waterloo Belgium tips?

The Wellington Museum Waterloo – in Herberg Bodenghien, was chosen as headquarters by the British Duke of Wellington, commander-in-chief of the Allied troops, in 1815. In the museum you can learn more about Wellington’s strategy and bivouac through objects and weapons. With a combination ticket you can visit the Domain of Waterloo and the Wellington museum at a discount.

The Napoleon Route- Do just like in the Ridley Scott movie Napoleon. Follow in the footsteps of Napoleon and Wellington with the Napoleon Route. This is a walking and cycling route of 10 km. The route through the battle scene starts at the Victor Hugo monument. Cycle through the landscape that Wellington chose for his battle against Napoleon. With beautiful views and the Lion of Waterloo as a gift. There is also a Napoleon route for the car.

Waterloo Beer tasting – I n the Mont-Saint-Jean farm, once a field hospital for English troops, now houses a microbrewery with brasserie and nice terrace. In la Bière de Waterloo you can both look (guided tour) and taste. The place for a beer with a historical touch.Waterloo Brewery


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