"Butte du Lion in Waterloo" Waterloo by csordila
Waterloo Travel Guide: 55 reviews and 137 photos
Those farms and fields are its claim to fame, because one of the most famous battles in history was fought on them.
The word has entered the English language: You probably know what it means when we say someone has met his Waterloo,
even if you know nothing about the actual battle.If you enjoy history, be sure to take the 20-30 minute drive to Waterloo. This is the location where Wellington (from England) and Blucher (from Germany) defeated Napoleon for the last time. Today an enormous mound of earth with a lion perched on the top provides an excellent view of the battlefield.
The lion hill is 43 m high, 226 stairs lead to the top.
The Lion has a weight of 28 tons, it is 4,45 m high and 4,50 m long. Its front paw rests on a sphere, representing the sweeping global victory attained in this famous battle. According to a legend the statue was cast from the bronze of the guns the French left behind on the battlefield.
One thing has to be noticed, even though the battlefield remains a rural area free of modern buildings, it is not exactly the way it appeared in 1815. So much earth had to be scraped from the surrounding landscape to build the Butte du Lion that its construction obliterated many of the significant military features of the battlefield.
The Battle of Waterloo now features as one of the greatest battles in European history, the final confrontation between France and the rest of Europe, marking the fall of Napoleon and opening the way towards a new era of peace in Europe.
The construction of the hill started in 1824, it took three years to finish at the end of 1826 and was considered an engineering marvel at the time.
Though the movie is lacking, the lighted map presentation here does a fantastic job of explaining the battle and is worth the money. The painting of the Battle, in circular form, is 110 meters long and 12 meters high.
- Pros:Enormous panoramic view!
- Cons:No movie!
- In a nutshell:A fantastic journey trough the history.
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- "Where Napoleon faced his final defeat"
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