"A pretty little town between rocks and a river" Dinant by annase
Dinant Travel Guide: 153 reviews and 333 photos
Dianant is a special place qua location and the look of it. It is squeezed between the River Meuse and the high rocks that overlook it. The skyline is dominated by its two main buildings: the Citadel, which overlooks the town from a 100 meter cliff, and the Cathedral of Notre Dame, outsized against the surrounding structures and capped by a bronze onion dome.
It may be a tiny little town, but it is very characterful and charming. Its main features are the slow flowing river, which you have to cross to get to the core centre of the town, the imposing citadel, rising high above the town and the Collegiate Church of Our Lady with its characteristic pear shaped bell tower.
This natural site of beauty was first occupied by the Celts before becoming a Roman settlement on the Roman built road joining Bavay and Trier. The Prince-Bishop of Liege had an Episcopal residence here and the town became part of the Principality of Liege in 1070. Its main development took place between the 13th and 15th centuries due to its remarkable copper ware industry known at large as “Dinanderie”.
The town held an important strategic position on the River Meuse. Therefore, it has been the site of many battles over the years. The town was occupied by the French for almost 20 years in the 17th century before being returned to the Prince-Bishop of Liège. During the Dutch reign (1815-1830) Dinant became part of the province of Namur, as it has remained ever since.
The inventor of the saxophone and other musical instruments, Adolphe Sax was born in Dinant. 1994 saw the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of his death.
Dinant also suffered during the two world wars. Much of the town was burnt down by German soldiers during the WWI and it was badly hit by bombardments and shelling in the WWII. The local authorities were so angered by this that they only allowed German flag to be flown amongst all the other European flags in 2000!!! :-O The flags decorate the bridge across the river.
The train ride from Namur to Dinant follows the Meuse River. The scenery along the way is very beautiful and all along... more travel advice
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