1.03.2016

Namur Gallery: Misty Panorama

Just out our bnb: La Citadelle!
I love Namur. It's a charming little town rich of history and with a warm soul. The Citadelle is one the iconoc places in cyclocross and the race in Namur is one of my favourite. Unfortunately I'm still working in school when it's held so this year I decided to start from here my Belgian Break.
I agree: Christmas days are NOT the best period to vist Namur, and not because of the crowd. No. Just the opposite: Christmas is a holyday Belgians use to spend at home, shops are closed, streets are deserted. It's hard or impossible to find a restaurant open or not full reserved. Indead we skipped a few meals.
However and for the same reason Christmas days are perfect to visit the Citadelle. You don't have to share it with anybody else.
The external wall
Namur is a very ancient town: human beens have lived here since about the 6.000 bc, at the confluence of two rivers.  In the 1st century bc there were already an harbour on the left side of the Sambre and a well organised village. The first fortification on the rocky hill date from the IX century ac. and to the 1429 the Citadelle became the residence of the Counts of Namur.
The town
The town also developped: in the XV century it had 8.000 inhabitants. In 1429 Jean III, sold  it to Philippe le Bon, Duke of Bourgogne but because of its stragic position it changed several owners: the Holy Empire, the Hapsbug of Spain and then of Austria,then the Republic of France and the Epire, finally the Royaume Uni des Pays-Bas. 
The Citadelle, shaped by Vauban and Coehoorn is one of the largest strongholds in Europe. The town of Namur hosted 20.000 habitants at the begining of the IX century.
The lift bridge
After the indipendence of Belgium till the 1977 the Citadelle has been a military area. Now it's almost completely open and assaulted only by tourists and, once a year, by cyclocrossers!



At the confluence
The oldest bridge
At the top of the hill: Restaurant Panorama

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