Of kayakker to the lord in the heart of the Ardennes forest

Just like you have with your kayak on the meandering Semois river through the Ardennes forest slips, takes culinary Luxembourg you on a trip along its many culinary wellness.

The valley of the Semois © /

It is a fact: the world looks very different from a river. In place of the aquatic environment of the border to behold, you become a one time literally immersed in the world of the fauna and flora in a water body inhabited.

While you are with a kayak or canoe downstream on the river Semois in the province of Luxembourg, slips, forsake wild ducks, black storks and bouffant trout in their pursuits to get you excited to greet. What feels good to you to include in the silence and the untouched state of the beautiful nature of the valley of the Semois.

The most beautiful river of Belgium

The departure of the Semois by canoe or kayak is the most beautiful of Belgium and the green semois valley is one of the quietest place in the Ardennes. If you didn’t know better, you would think you are Canadian waters are sailing. Here you can the excitement of the city and the stress of the daily job completely behind you for a few hours, a day or even multiple days, where you will spend the night at campsites along the river.

From June to August the river Semois, by the way are in bloom. This is the rare current waterranonkel. That are up to six meters long floating waterstengels where in the summer white flowers appear. In some places, blooms this ranonkel so abundantly that there is a huge floating bloemeneilanden arise on the surface of the water. A real chore for the arm muscles…

The Semois at Chiny

Although the Semois is touted as a familierivier and the number of cascades is limited, you may be sure that at the end of the cruise, soaked out of your boat. All aboard you as we in Chiny-sur-Semois, then it takes less than half a minute for you all on the side should convert to the water out of the boat and scoop your hair from friction. All children will probably be even more of this kind of adventure want to, because the Semois meanders for the rest mostly quiet through the woods, green meadows and cosy cottages, at least if you yourself are not solid momentum in the slate.

Take the opportunity to get your arms to work and rest regularly, one of the unexpected terraces as the beautiful balconies of Le Moulin Cambier and the hotel Comtes De Chiny, which are also along the river encounter. And don’t forget your picnic is not so that you can have lunch on a deserted beach in the middle of the river where you may never want to.

Enjoy culinary delights in peace. That is what with dot number one is in the province of Luxembourg, is a source of tasty local produce, ranging from delicious meats such as ham, black pudding, terrines to wildmenu’s, pike in butter sauce, eel or trout “à l’ancienne”. How the charcuterie is established, you can go to view in the Farm of Sanglochons, a small charcuteriemuseum that shows how the salting, drying and smoking on the old and wise in his work. In the pleasant, traditional inn, afterwards you can the salted, dried or smoked ham evervarken, a cross between a wild boar and a normal pig, tasting.

‘Il faut la boire pour le croire’

Now we are back with the feet on the dry, let the adventure behind us and it is time to in the past diving. The romantic Château de Grandvoir, near Neufchâteau, is a genuine piece of history, with roots to the seventeenth century. The quadrangular sandstone castle was a few years ago, beautifully freshened up with respect for that past, and offers eight stylish, luxurious guest rooms, together with a small gourmet restaurant for twenty guests, some elegant lounges and a typical, modern microbrewery.

Here, since the 2016 Le Vaurien, a blond beer of high fermentation with an alcohol content of 5.7°, concocted by the 26-year-old engineer-brewer Julien Depierreux. The name of the beer, with as slogan “il faut la boire pour le croire” is inspired on the nickname of the inhabitants of the villages Grandvoir and Petitvoir. The region of the ‘Vauriens’ is fine land for the production of the Ardennes beer a good thirst-quencher turns out to be after a brisk walk in the nearby Forest of Anlier, or as an aperitif on the beautiful, quiet terrace of the hotel, overlooking the garden in the run-up to the dinner.

Because that is the most striking discovery of the castle: the gastronomic restaurant. Since July of 2017 is the young, driven Antoine Rigaux behind the pots. With barely 23 years old presents this chef expanded his passion for cooking and local products that he culinary heruitvindt. On the board to come herbs, spices and seasonings from our own groentekassen and trout and crayfish from the pond of the extensive garden behind the restaurant.

We choose to center a static and cosy setting for the ‘Menu du Vaurien’, which is completely in the sign of the eponymous beer. On the table the quail with mash, shallot marinated in porto and gravy with barley, smoked trout and a cold sauce made from hops, wild turbot with linguine in white butter sauce, and a crust of barley, smoked eel, filet of Belgian blue with hopkorstje and a sauce with bufalacheese from Semel, and to finish a delicious Vauriensabayon and granenijs.

This line is the next morning carried on to the breakfast, where the local products are again central to with by Antoine Riguax prepared jams and jellies and homemade bread, to artisan hams and yoghurt from the nearby Ferme du Grand Enclos.

Château de Grandvoir let you like no other discover the reinvented flavours of this generous region. A lord worthy, and a good reason to again in that kayak to crawl…

Staying in the Château de Grandvoir is from 120 euros per night. La Cornée 66 – 6840 Grandvoir (Neufchâteau)

Menu du Vaurien: 45 to 70 euro for 3 to 6 courses

Menu du Marché: 37 euros for 3 courses, 47 euros for 4 courses, 57 euro for 5 courses and 62 euro for 6 courses.

Attractions in the neighborhood:

The castle of Bouillon: the oldest and the most interesting remnant of feudalism in Belgium on three rocky peaks over the Semois river overlook.

The abbey of Orval: discover the secrets of brewing the Orval beer

The war museum of Bastogne: a unique centre that the Second world War is devoted

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