Rapallo was never on my list. I never thought there could actually be something about this city. It lies on the Ligurian Sea coast, just between Cinque Terre and Genoa. As a girl from Croatia, I know it from the history books as the Treaty of Rapallo was signed there, in Villa Pagana, formerly known as Villa Spinola. A treaty…
The five Cinque Terre villages are situated in northern Italy on the Mediterranean Sea, just 3 hours by train from Milan, Pisa and Florence. I have arrived by car and totally enjoyed the national park that spreads across the five villages. La Spezia My journey started in La Spezia. This was the very first stop as I…
Tintine was slowly climbing up the hills of San Marino. Not much pressure should have been put on this car as she had enough of the shocks in the last year or two. The hills around us were rising and soon we found ourselves surrounded by an amazing view. It was San Marino surrounded by…
My Life in Sicily finished after a year spent on this island. It was time to turn on my Tintine (a beautiful red car), hop on a ferry and say goodbye. I was nostalgic as a was driving through Reggio Calabria. But soon I was in Puglia – the region with the best Italian cheeses.…
Ardennes are super fun to visit. They are cold but there is loads of trails to discover. Hence, after so many locations, Rochefort was on the route as well. Its ancient position at the crossroads where the route to Saint-Hubert crossed that from Liège to Bouillon required fortifying: the ruins of the old castle, which gave the place its name and…
Once upon a time, there was a little Ivana in Cuba trying to explain a poor restaurant holder that the pizza ragusa he is having on the menu is not some Italian name for some Italian city, but the city of Dubrovnik in Croatia. Stupid girl. Ragusa is a city on the southern side of the…
An Ionian seaside town, Avola is a mix of old and new. The town focuses heavily on the sea, with its history as a tuna fishing port. Today, the remains of the Vecchia Tonnara at the wharf are a stone backdrop to the sandy beaches. Avola dates back to a pre-Greek people called the Sicani.…
Located about 11 kilometres north of Catania, it is the perfect little commune to visit during the ottobrata – the local festivity that occurs every October here in Sicily, celebrating the fruits of the land: frutti di terra. The first encounter went wrong already 🙂 Approaching the booth with fruit, I have noticed quince – one…
If something is worth visiting in life, it is the Aeolian islands. Becasue it makes you think about winter in the south. It makes you think about simplicity of life. And it makes you realise how not to treat the tourists: just some bags of potatoes that need to be shipped from one island to…
I haven’t had a chance to spent a bit more time discovering this city. But just a glimpse and it made me think to re-visit and make it’s due. When the time will come, I promise to update with more photos. But for now, enjoy the story 🙂 Several civilizations settled in Milazzo and left…
I didn’t expect much from this harbour city, to be honest. I knew they have a great beer – Messina cristali di sale: a great Sicilian beer brewed since 1923 and one of the most loved Italian beers. It is the third largest city on the island of Sicily, and the 13th largest city in Italy.…
Senlis is a city in the northern French department of Oise, Hautes de France. Cute, medieval and charming. It offered us great peek into history: The monarchs of the early French dynasties lived in Senlis, attracted by the proximity of the Chantilly forest. Senlis is situated on the river Nonette. Senlis was known in early Roman imperial times as Augustomagus. During the 3rd century, a seven-meter…
A day trip to the south of Brussels, to be more precise – Brabant region in Wallonie which is the site of the Battle of Waterloo, where the resurgent Napoleon was defeated for the […]
A day trip to the south of Brussels, to be more precise – Brabant region in Wallonie which is the site of the Battle of Waterloo, where the resurgent Napoleon was defeated for the final time in 1815.
We started with the visit to the museum which takes you to the times of enlightenment and ideas of the 18th century philosophers like Rene Descartes or Diderot, Immanuel Kant (my ever time favorite), Montesquieu, Rousseau, Adam Smith, Voltaire … whose main ideology based on the idea that a human is allowed to advice for itself without being oppressed by the government nor church: in opposition to an absolute monarchy and the fixed dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church
Soon evolved the Declaration of the Rights of the Man and of the Citizen of 1789 (Déclaration des droits de l’homme et du citoyen de 1789, fra) – a human civil rights document from the French Revolution.
However, Napoleon – even though sharing these principles (he established the civil code etc), soon started to rule in authoritarian way and battling the Europe in Napoleonic wars. So, the european leaders allied against him in The Gret Coalition.
The Europe that time after so many battles looked liked this:
The most south battle was Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife which I mentioned in my previous post when visiting the Canary Islands. The battle between French Empire and British Royal was famous for admiral Nelson loosing his arm.
However, the wars through Europe continued and The Great Coalition decided to invite Napoleon for the battle at Waterloo.
The Battle of Waterloo took place near Waterloo on 18 June 1815 between the First French Empire of Napoleon Bonaparte and the Seventh Coalition (troops from Prussia, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Hanover, Brunswick and Nassau), under the main allied commanders, the Duke of Wellington and General von Blücher.
Napoleon lost and the allies decided to make a tribute by building the butte with the victorious lion facing the France. We climbed up with 226 stairs, in order to see the battle and the strategy drawn.
Time for the beer: of course, in the country of beers, the Waterloo commemorative beer 🙂
The day was still bright and there was so many things to see around the field: the barracks of both enemies where the soldiers were sleeping, or the Hougoumont – the small house with the yard where finally the enemies met again to finish the battle, it was kinds the battle within the battle.
In his novel Les Misérables, Victor Hugo describes how 300 bodies were thrown down a well at Hougoumont. Most of them were still alive.
Fun fact: a celebrated 400 years old wooden crucifix which survived an inferno during the Battle of Waterloo was only to be looted from a battlefield chapel has been rediscovered in a Belgian flea market after a four year hunt by Interpol. The crucifix is now there, at the Hougoumont farm and it well respected.
The visit to the battlefield was very touching and sensitive. We decided to walk the land field which is nowadays full of agricultural goods but once the place of terrible battlefield.
The day finished in the city of Waterloo with the dinner. In the city center there is a small museum dedicated to the winner of the battle: the commander Wellington.
Funny, isn’t it? Even though he is the actual winner of the battle who stopped Napoleon for long time, his name is not even close mentioned and celebrated as Napoleons’.
I was just thinking about traveling to Belgium on a trip with my mom. This looks very fun and interesting. Thank you for sharing.
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Make sure you visit my other blog posts about Belgium I live here for already 5 years and discovered some interesting places. 🙂 I hope you will enjoy staying in Belgium! ❤
Your travel posts come up with the history as well.. so nice to read your blog
I am enjoying reading your blog because you include a glimpse of their history, for someone like me who is from Asia it is very interesting. I heard Belgium is beautiful, I believe it more now by seeing your photos hope to visit this country also! 🙂
The history of Waterloo is embedded in minds of all. Your blog refreshes it all.
Ah this is how the place looks like where Napoleon lost his final war!
I’ve been looking up places to go in Belgium! This is a great post to learn about travel as well as history. Thanks!
Belgium is beautiful and I loved how you have captured it so beautifully in the photographs. I never knew about its rich history. Thank you for sharing.
Seems like the climb up 226 stairs was totally worth the views! Waterloo commemorative beer sounds like the one to try. I remember reading during school days about Waterloo, the place where Napoleon lost the war. Interesting to read about your experience!
We have a Waterloo here in Ontario though Belgium seems to be more quaint .
Napoleon vs rest of Europe leaders placed as chess board or is it just the architectural shape.!
Nice post, thanks
i really love Belgium
I love Belgium and want to see it. Nice job.
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