Tournai

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Cathedral at sunset

Tournai (Dutch: Doornik) is a city in Wallonia. It is famed for its impressive Romanesque Cathedral. It was also the only Belgian city to ever be controlled by the English Throne.

Understand[edit]

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

Tournai is served by regular trains from all over Belgium From Brussels direct trains run every hour and take just under an hour. Direct trains run to Lille just across the border in France, which has a Eurostar Station. Trains take 30-60 minutes Paris is accessible with a change in just under two hours. See here for more details and timtables

By bus[edit]

From Brussels Coaches would take around 1h 45m and require 2 changes See here for timtables

By plane[edit]

The nearest Airport is Lille Lesquin which is served buy a few Budget Airlines heading to Milan, Warsaw, Leeds and Marrakesh The airports of Brussels, Charleroi and Paris would also be useful.

Get around[edit]

Tournai is fairly compact and can be easily covered on foot. There is a local bus service.

See[edit]

Bells in the Belfry
  • Grand-Place, the main square in town.
  • The Cathedral is on the UNESCO World Heritage List as one of the best preserved Cathedrals in Northern Europe. It is renowned for having one of the most impressive Romanesque naves in Europe and has a remarkable array of statues. The Gothic choir was a later addition. there is also a Treasury Museum attached. It open 9am - 12 Midday 2pm-5pm (6pm in summer) , Services 11am Weekdays 10am weekends
  • Belfry offers great views across the city, especially over the nearby Cathedral. It is the oldest in Belgium and stands at 72 metres high. It offers very informative multilingual displays on the role of Belfries in the history of the region. The Belfry is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List as part of the Belfries of Belgium and France. It is open the same times as the Cathedral, but closed on Mondays
The issue of souls in purgatory by Rubens in the Cathedral Saint-Louis Chapel
  • Museum of Fine Arts (Musée des Beaux-Arts) displays paintings by Rubens, Van Gogh, Monet, Seurat and Watteau among others. They are displayed in a fine building designed by renowned architect Victor Horta in the Beaux-Arts style.
  • The Scheldt (Dutch Schelde, French: Escaut) is a canal-like river passing through the city with active motorized barge traffic. Rue Royale has a lift bridge over the river. Watching barge traffic may be of interest to visitors.
  • Pont des Trous, a vestige of medieval, military architecture on the river Scheldt (Escaut) with motorized freight barges passing tightly through the narrow central arch.
  • Musée de Folklore, Maison Tournaisienne (near Grand-Place), has many exhibits on local folklore including several, full-scale dioramas of urban and rural scenes from the bygone era.

Do[edit]

  • International Folklore Festival takes place in late September/ early October every year attracting large crowds.

Buy[edit]

Eat[edit]

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

  • Lille is only 30km away and a worthy excursion
  • Spiennes is reasonably close and is home to Neolithic Flint Mines inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List
  • Courtray (Dutch: Kortrijk, French: Courtrai) is 30-35 minutes away by train in Dutch-speaking Flanders.
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