If you’re looking for castles in Belgium to visit and landed on this post, you’re lucky because I’m going to show you 12 magnificent ones!
Belgium has a lot to offer when it comes to castles. There are about 3000 (!) castles in this small European country! But don’t worry, I picked the best ones out for you!
All 3000 of them are wonderful, however, in this post, I’ll highlight some of the top choices I visited myself! This way, I can explain exactly what to expect. Some castles are nice to take pictures with while others are perfect to learn about medieval times or for challenging hikes!
Find out which one will fit you below!
Top tip: at the end of this post I’ve included a map with all the castles I will talk about below. Use this map to make planning your next trip much easier!
12 top castles in Belgium:
Before I dive into these wonderful castles, I would like to make one more note. Below you’ll see the names of the castles in the language of the region they’re lying in. You might know that Belgium has 3 official languages, so most names are Dutch (Kasteel) or French (Château)!
Château Marnix de Sainte Aldegonde
This castle, with a ridiculously long name, is probably one of the most fairytale-like castles you can find in Belgium. With its stunning location between the river Oude Schelde and a forest, the castle is still in possession of a noble family, unsurprisingly the family de Marnix de Sainte Aldegonde.
The good news is that everyone can visit this castle! For an entrance fee of €12 you can join a guided group tour of the castle, taking approximately 1h30. But visiting dates are very selective! You can only visit as an individual on each Thursday at 2 p.m. from Easter until the end of September.
Alternatively, the castle has open days on August 15th, the last 2 Sundays of August and the first 2 Sundays of September from 1:30 p.m. until 4 p.m. for a reduced entrance fee.
Important! The castle is currently closed until 2023 for renovation! What you can do is go on one of the hikes that pass by the castle on the opposite side of the river.
Why you should visit: for a fairytale castle deepdive into history!
Château de Vêves
The castle of Vêves can be found on the hills not far from Dinant. If children would draw a castle, I’m sure it comes close to this one!
The wonderful thing about the castle of Vêves is that there’s still a royal family living in it. If you take a tour of the castle you can visit its impressive, and really old, rooms which are magnificently decorated! You’ll also be able to see pictures of the family who still owns the castle as well as their ancestors. Could you imagine growing up in a castle?
I loved visiting this castle because it definitely shows that not all royal castles are doomed for history books! Also, there is an amazing hike passing by this castle you shouldn’t miss!
Why you should visit: to admire the wonderful halls and see a castle that’s still alive!
Château Féodal de La Roche-en-Ardenne
Every castle has something unique, so does Château Féodal de La Roche-en-Ardenne! Located in a small village on the river Hermeux, this castle is the major highlight of the region.
Besides its rich history, you’ll want to visit this castle for its falconry show. Huge predatory birds will fly just a centimeter from your face which is definitely very impressive to see. Nope, I didn’t have to zoom in for that picture, he was literally so close to my face!
On top of that, La Roche-en-Ardenne is also a very cute village to stroll around, have a look at other monuments such as the old town hall, kayak on the river Hermeux and hike up to the viewpoint Belvédère de La Roche!
|Castle visit + falconry show||€7,5|
Why you should visit: for the impressive falconry show!
Château de la Hulpe
Although you won’t be able to enter, visiting Château de la Hulpe is just a magnificent experience! The castle is located amidst greenery on top of a hill which forces you to take a small walk before arriving at the castle. The garden is well maintained and you should definitely take a look at the box-tree hedges they shaped so meticulously!
To quench your thirst after a walk, there’s a little cafe located 1 minute from the castle, called La Taverne de l’Homme Bleue. If you crave a cultural experience as well, take a look at the interactive art museum of Jean-Michel Folon!
Why you should visit: for a relaxing walk in a great natural area!
Château de Walzin
This is probably the castle that involves the most adventure, at least, that’s what I experienced!
Château de Walzin is located on top of a cliff, which means that you have an amazing view of the castle when you’re standing in the fields below. The castle is private property and impossible to enter so you should do it with the view (which is amazing, so don’t worry).
To reach this wonderful view, you can park right below the castle at the ancient water mill and take a small walk. You should cross the river and for the adventurous people amongst you, you might want to walk through the river in summer when there’s not too much water.
But there’s also the possibility to cross a bridge, which I didn’t see the first time, so I crossed through the water, ahum. That’s why I want to at least mention it to you ;). If you’re in the mood, you can take a picnic with you and enjoy your meal with an amazing view!
Why you should visit: for a bit of adventure and maybe a picnic with a view!
Château de Montaigle
This castle actually is a ruin and not much of a castle anymore. However, located on top of a hill it gives you the most amazing view!
When visiting the castle, which is entirely run and maintained by volunteers, you will get a little booklet with some explanation about its rich history. Don’t expect anything huge though.
However, the determination of these volunteers to keep this castle from being demolished is admirable! All profits go to the preservation of the castle. Plus, there won’t be anyone around, we were the only visitors at that time, since most people simply don’t know about the existence of these ruins!
One minor point is that there’s barely any parking space so be prepared for this! If you can, park your car somewhere on the route and do the last part up to the castle on foot.
|Entrance to the ruins||€5|
Why you should visit: for the view and to support these ruins from being demolished!
Another ruin here for you and definitely my favorite castle on the list! Hauteroche castle is located on top of a hill which gives you one of the most magnificent views you’ve ever seen in Belgium!
To reach the ruins you should, however, be prepared to take a serious climb. I honestly felt like a monkey climbing the steep hill which you’ll see if you stand below in front of the castle. Luckily, there is also a regular path with an indicated hiking route going alongside the ruins (this is only something I later discovered on my way back down, whoops).
There is parking below which gives you entrance to the hiking route passing by the ruins. However, the ruins are private property and not maintained at all, so entering could be dangerous (and not to mention unlawful).
This truly is my favorite castle because you can really see how nature took over when humans left!
Why you should visit: for a good hike and wonderful view!
Castle d’Ursel is not too far located from castle Marnix de Sainte Aldegonde, is surrounded by water and has a very nice public park to stroll around. With its yellow color and squared shapes, it is definitely one of the most peculiar castles in Belgium!
The castle has been the summer residence of the family d’Ursel for centuries but is not property of the government of Antwerp that has given it a culture purpose. Could you imagine coming here with all your servants to spend your summer holiday?
These days you can find regular events in and around the castle, and you can even rent the castle to be lord for one day! Although the website says it’s open for individual visitors, it is impossible to find any more information about it so I suggest knocking on the door yourself once you’re there ;). (Or maybe sending an email beforehand.)
If you have the time, go take a look at the Paviljoen De Notelaer. This 18th century monument used to be part of the castle grounds and is home to several events as well!
Why you should visit: for a nice walk on the castlegrounds and a visit to the castle
Kasteel van Ooidonk
The castle of Ooidonk is nothing short of a hidden gem in Belgium! This lavish castle is not only worth a visit because of its buildings but is surrounded by large, beautifully maintained castle grounds that are often home to exhibitions.
This medieval fortress that has been rebuilt in renaissance style is still home to the count and countess t’Kint de Roodenbeke and their 3 children. The owners do not only maintain it but they also open it up to the public in all possible ways.
You can visit the castle from April 1st until November 1st on Sundays and holidays (plus Saturdays in summer) from 2 p.m. until 5:30 p.m. and request a guided tour. Alternatively, you can visit the castle grounds from Tuesday until Sunday all day long.
But if that isn’t enough, there is even the possibility to stay the night in this castle! Yes, the count and countess rent out some rooms via Airbnb, definitely worth to check it out!
Why you should visit: for the wonderful castle grounds + this is your chance to stay overnight in a castle!
Kasteel van Bouchout
The castle of Bouchout, a medieval fortress, is located in one of the most beautiful natural areas of Belgium, namely the Botanic Garden of Meise! You won’t get in the castle unless you visit the botanic garden but it’s definitely worth the entrance fee you pay for it. You can easily make this a day trip for the entire family!
When you enter the castle of Bouchout, you’ll be catapulted back a few centuries ago when it was inhabited by Empress Charlotte, the sister of King Leopold II and widow of Emperor Maximiliaan of Austria. You’ll learn all about her, rather sad, life an the history of the castle during a short, self-guided tour of the castle.
Inside the castle you’ll also find an exhibition about the art of scientific plant drawings, which is very fascinating to visit. Plus, definitely don’t forget to walk around the 92 hectares large domain and admire the exotic plants inside the conservatory!
|Entrance Botanic Garden||€10|
Why you should visit: for a bit of history and the wonderful collection plants in the botanic garden
Château de Reinhardstein
This medieval castle is probably one of the hardest to find castles in Belgium! Located high on a rock amidst the forests, the only way you can get to the castle is on foot. Park your car at a parking lot nearby and walk the remaining few hundreds of meters on the gravel road leading to the castle entrance.
After a decay of several decades, a castle-lover just like you and me rediscovered the castle and renovated it for its current visitors. Today, you can enjoy a guided tour of the castle every Wednesday during the year or every day during July and August.
There’s also an annual medieval festival that’s worth a visit, and many hikes in the region pass by the castle’s valley, giving you an impressive view of the castle and the nearby waterfall. On your visit, don’t miss the initiation in archery!
Why you should visit: for a historic tour of the castle, challenging hikes and to learn archery
The castle of Tillegem is located amidst the forests around Bruges, and even comes with a moat and drawbridge! Until 1978 it was the property of a noble family, after which the Flemish government bought the castle and now you can find here… the offices of several regional institutions.
Park your car at the edge of the forest (at one of the 2 parking lots of Tillegembos) and take a relaxing walk to the castle. Currently, the building is not open for visits but it’s definitely worthwhile to take a walk around it, through the castle garden and surrounding forest!
Why you should visit: for a relaxing walk in the forest
Your map of castles in Belgium
I hope you’re full of inspiration to visit some Belgian castles now! These 12 castles were my top favorites so I hope you liked them!
If you want to visit other peculiar places in Belgium, don’t hesitate to look at the post about my favorite hidden gems in Belgium as well.