We spent this 4th of July without the fanfare and fireworks we usually enjoy. This year, we took a step back in history and explored the oldest preserved medieval castle in Belgium, Castle Bouillon, home of one of the first Crusaders, Godefroid.
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About a month ago hubs and I ended up having some time to spend on our own and we decided to take the opportunity to go visit Groot-Bijgaarden. It is a short drive outside of Brussels and not far from our little town as well. They have an annual spring flower show, which is the largest in Belgium and the gardens are open for tours. Because the palace is still lived in by the Bigard family, the gardens are only open for about a month every year when the flowers are at their peak, but it is available for rentals year-round. I could just imagine a fairy-tale wedding and reception here at the centuries old castle.
The moat around the castle still exists and you enter the castle grounds by crossing a drawbridge. Once you arrive inside you can explore the grounds including the chapel.
The grounds were planted with beautiful displays of tulips, daffodils, hyacinth and crocus. We went one of the first days the grounds were open for tours, so we did not see them in their full spring glory, but they were beautiful and promised a grand show at their peak.
The festival also offered a food and beverage tent and a playground for kids to enjoy. There are various other activities available throughout the festival and indoor display area where Belgian floral designers and landscapers show-off their skills in themed presentations. You can also purchase various bulbs and potted plants that were on display in the gardens and the indoor area.
Prices are listed on the website and they offer a season pass for just 18 EUR/adult. We chose to just get the one-day ticket as we weren’t sure if we’d make it back for another visit.
It was a perfect little outing for just hubs and me and the rain held off just long enough for us to walk the majority of the grounds.
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