Last year during our week stay in Namur, Belgium, we rented a car and did a little trip around the southern part of the country. One of our stops was in the village of La Roche, known far and wide for it's Ham de Ardennes. But before we could get there, the Abbey d'Orval was in the way, home of one of the last authentic abbey-brewed beers and some really great cheese.
The monastery was founded in the 9th century by Italian monks. It was almost totally destroyed during the French revolution but rebuilt in the 1920's. Remnants of the old building still remain
and the spring that has always supplied water for the beer is still running strong and clear.
After the abbey is was off to La Roche to stock this years supply of the delectable pig product (here's last years picture)
and then it was on to visit the town of Bullion.
The town is on a bend in the Semois River, glowered over by The Chateau de Bullion, mainly built by Godfroid de Bullion in the 9th century. Like every other major fortification in this part of the world, it was rebuilt many times over the years, most recently by Vauban in the 15th century. It's supposedly one of the finest feudal castles in Belgium.
The days touring complete, we returned to Pont a bar for our final big shopping trip and Friday nights big fete at Pont a Bar.