This is a well organised museum, hosted in an award-winning architectural setting. The visit with audio guide is user-friendly and very good value for money. You can easily spend a few hours here. To finish your visit, there are good facilities, such as a museum shop, a spacious lobby where you can take a rest, or a restaurant. An absolute must for...more
Even though very few people actually "live" in Louvain-la-Neuve, the Christmas Market is large and extensive. Why? Because students buy gifts too, and they tend to have disposible income.So during the weeks before Noel, the Place de l'Universite, a large square next ot the train station, is packed with tents and stands selling all sorts of...more
How's this for a party:20 groups of students create crazy-looking floats mounted on bicycles, then ride them around town for 24 hours, all the while guzzling as much beer as humanly possible.Sound good?That's 24h de Louvain-la-Neuve. And I missed it. This second largest annual drinking party in Europe (After Oktoberfest), and I missed it. I was in...more
Boulevard de Lauzelle 61, Louvain La Neuve, Waterloo, Brabant Wallon, 1348, Belgium
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Families
You've no doubt heard of Belgian Waffles. But did you know that there are many different kinds of Belgian Waffles? 'Tis true! And for truly delicious gaufres a la liegeois, proceed to the little old man off the Grand'Place who peddles his hot waffles for a Euro apiece.The secret to Liege-style waffles is the lumps of sugar baked inside. So you...more
As a university town, LLN is all about affordable yet tasty food. More importantly, as a Belgian university town, LLN is all about affordable yet really really tasty food with great beer. The Piano exemplifies that. A little hole in the wall local restaurant, the Piano specializes in hearty foods for college budgets. Their quarter chicken is...more
Nothing says lunch in LLN like the Crousti. With fresh-baked bread and tasty meats, the fine folks at the Crousti put together a wonderful baguette (think submarine sandwich, but better) for the low low price of 3 Euros. I'm a fan of salami with a little salt and pepper. So good, so very good.more
There are several restaurants on the Grand'Rue (le Prof being the one that comes to mind first) which serve that most Belgian of dishes: moules-frites: mussels and fries.Get a big pot of mussles steamed in a Provencal sauce or perhaps a white wine and garlic marinade. Either way, you're going to dance with joy, particularly since the beer you're...more
Despite America's mistaken belief that Fries are French in origin, the beautifully sliced and fried potato has its roots in Belgium, and every city worth its salt has a friterie ready to serve the salty, crispy delicacies. LLN is no exception, and I devoured many a cornet (paper shaped into a horn and filled with golden fries).In Belgium, fries are...more
I have no proof that this creperie is actually "Breton." What I can tell you is that the crepes are flat yet moist and the infinite fillings most satisfying. If you want a savory crepe, they've got those: curry, cayenne, and other mouth-watering flavors. For sweet tastes, all sorts of fruit and creams are available. Plus, they have a monstrous...more
After an evening at the cercles, you have to eat. It's biological, the same craving which ensures that the Waffle House and Denny's stay in business in the States. In LLN, the best place to satisfy the 2 AM munchies is the loathesome kebab place on the Place de Wallons. During daylight hours, you wouldn't touch this stuff. The meat is nasty, the...more
Assuming that you have neither the patience nor the inclination to go hard-core into the cercle scene, might I recommend the cool refreshing upstairs of Jazz Matazz? You can chill on sofas while drowning your sorrows with a pint of something tasty and hobnobbing with friends. I started many an evening at Jazz, and ended a few there as well.The...more
To get to Louvain-la-Neuve by train, as many people do, for the most part, you must change trains at Ottignies, a teensy little town southwest of LLN's center. Technically, it's all the same town.Ottignies is on the Brussels-Namur-Luxembourg Intercity line, so there is near-constant activity. But if you don't time it right, you could be hanging out...more
As a university town with practically no permanent residents, LLN has one of the worst shopping districts imaginable. There are a couple of stores selling school supplies and a few computer places, a bike shop, and some magazine stands, but all in all, not overly much. There are three grocery stores in town. The Aldi under the train station is the...more
Belgians are justifiably proud of their exploits in the field of chocolate. Let the Japanese perfect cars; let the French perfect stinky cheese. Belgians are the masters of chocolate. Hands down. No argument permitted.Therefore, when you're in Belgium, you know you're going to eat some chocolate somewhere, but what kind?For value and quality, I...more
47 Reviews and Opinions
Belgians like to kiss. When two friends meet, or are introduced by a mutual friend, they exchange one kiss on each other's left cheek. Even men exchange this greeting. As an American, I found this creepy at first, but I gradually accepted it.
Belgains kiss when they greet someone for the first time that day; therefore, every morning, I would have to kiss my flat-mates' cheeks, eight in all, and most of those male, scruffy and beer-stinky.
But it's the culture, right? Small price to pay for access to such excellent food and drink.
A convenient lake sits in the dell beneath the l'Hocaille Quarter. Of course, I don't have a picture, but I do have a picture of the woods between my apartment and the lake.
The lake is nice, with a 1 km loop path around it that makes for quality jogging. It's also where I spent the afternoon of September 11th, 2001 in deep reflection with my flatmate Natalie. She spoke practically no English, and my French was awful at the time, but talking with her made me feel much better about being so far from my home, friends, family, and country. That day as much as any made me love Belgium.
The "town centre" is fully pedestrianised and seems eerily quiet as a result. All the streets and squares are named after faculties or eminent academics/scientists/brainy people.
Fondest memory: The kindness of the old lady in the Catholic agency, she was so sweet.