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There are several breweries left in Limburg. In fact it's the only province where Heineken has not yet managed to conquer 50% of the market. Reason why they declared war on the smaller breweries of this province. Heineken policy is to destroy all alternatives to make people drink their crap. Remember that, and never drink Heineken. Support quality!
Traditionally the beer culture in this region is closer to that of Germany than to that of Belgium. Which means you can find beers of the Dort and Alt types.
The most obvious brand you will probably find is Brand, which is located in Wijlre but is owned by Heineken. They used to have several excellent beers but ceased the production of those in bottles a while ago. Perhaps you can find some on tap. The only bottled beers they have now are three lagers.
Gulpener (from Gulpen, surprise!) produces several specialties, including the Chateau Neubourg pilsner, which is quite expensive thanks to its stylish blue bottle. This brewery also makes the St. Gerardus beer for the monastery in Wittem. Not a bad beer, but I was not really impressed.
Valkenburg has the De Leeuw brewery, which produces Valkenburgs Wit, a nice wheat beer.
Maastricht had the De Ridder brewery, but Heineken closed that down recently. Their Wieckse Witte is a good wheat beer, but obviously made elsewhere. But you can find Double Saison by De Keyzer in various bars in and around the city. This is a great beer.
Finally, Christoffel from Roermond is a nice bitter blond beer.
Is that all. No, that's not all. It's just that I don't know every brewery in this province, or their beers. There's also De Heren van Beeck, Alpha and Lindenboom. Perhaps I'm even forgetting some.
Updated Apr 1, 2004
In the south-east of the province, with cities like Heerlen and Kerkrade, is the former coal-mining district. Although the mines closed decades ago many things remind of the past. Part of the memory are some hills. These are artificial hills, they had to put the dirt taken from the ground somewhere, didn't they? Because the workers were housed in settlements close to the mines the area has practically become one big city. The region is also called Parkstad, because it's a rather green one. Not exactly what you'd expect perhaps. I found this region surprisingly beautiful. What struck me especially was the simple beauty of many houses the miners lived in, having been designed by often famous architects. Perhaps compensation for the fact that these people spent much of their lives underground?
Strangely, the museum about mining is in Valkenburg, which never had any coal-mines!
Updated Jul 22, 2003
If walking in open, flat rural land is your idea of relaxation, then you will find many areas of south Limburg suit you well.
Written Nov 26, 2004
A beautiful water mill which you can visit in the weekends. It uses the waterfalls (small) in the Gulp to grind grain and so. Nearby they sell the best icecreams in Limburg, made from fresh milk.
Written Aug 10, 2004
Choose a trail in the surrounding of a beautiful village in the Southern part of Limburg - Het Heuvelland.
Written Aug 10, 2004
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