42 hectares of buildings, towers, gardens, mills, museums, churches and much more that we tell you in detail as an essential visit. If you want to make a complete city tour you have our dedicated article
The Park Abbey in Leuven, the best preserved in Belgium
The Abbey of the Park or Abdij van 't Park was founded in 1129 by the Duke Godfrey when this area was the hunting park of Godofredo I of Leuven and for centuries it had great importance in the city although it was suffering numerous damages during the wars fought by William of Orange, confiscations by Joseph II, Holy Roman Emperor, and even under the French Republic, until the founding of the Kingdom of Belgium. However, the lack of money made it not until 2014 when an ambitious restoration plan was carried out and today it is wonderful stroll through its facilities
However, the experience begins much earlier, by the road that leads to the surrounding ponds (where to take some good pictures of the abbey from afar) full of trees that provide enough shade for the hottest days and complete silence away from the university environment of the city.
The entry is made by the San Norberto Gate, completely restored, although in this area they are still working, especially in the gardens.
It is expected that throughout 2018 the works on the abbey and all of its domains will be completed completely although the inauguration of the PARCUM is already planned, the Museum of dialogue between Religion, Art and Culture, for next October 25, 2017 that will show the unpublished collection of the parents of the Park Abbey with an inaugural exhibition called "From the world. Images of isolation and liberation (Van de wereld. Beelden van beslotenheid in bevrijding) until 25 February of next year.END OF THE RENEWAL OF THE PARK ABBEY: Although most of the important work is done, the last important dates are:
- October 2017: Renovation west wing of the abbey and future museum
- 2018 (date to be confirmed):Outpatients with glass windows
- 2019 (date to be confirmed):Library and refectory with stucco vaults
Another important fact is that even today a small number of pre-Americans or Norberts live there and the church It is still in use and worth a visit since the ceiling with 3D plasterwork depicting many biblical scenes such as the last supper really impresses
The walk through its more than 42 hectares continues between gardens, forests, ponds and lakes and reveals places you don't expect to find as a farm or a windmill that preserves its furniture and interiors intact.
In the upper part of the abbey you can enter a cemetery It houses many important personalities of the University of Leuven. There are also some remains such as the old wooden doorsbrewery in the abbeythat they intend, after the renovations, to allow the production of Heverlee beer again, which beer lovers like me would love (remember that). Finally, it also seems that there is room for somehives although we did not find the beekeeper to be able to know them better The photos of this article that are not ours belong to the Tourist Office Leuven or Flanders
Practical information for your visit to the Abbey of the Park in Leuven
How to get to the Abbey of the Park?
This site is only 30-35 minutes walk from the city center or the train station in a very pleasant walk entering the mall. If you wish you can also arrive at bike, so common in all Flemish cities, and in less than 15 minutes you will be there.
You also have the option of taking Buses 4, 5, 6 or 630 next to the train station at Leuven Station Perron 5 and in 12 minutes it leaves you at Heverlee Broekstraat, 450 meters from the park.
Opening hours and prices of the Abbey of the Park
The opening hours of the Abbey grounds is from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.., except Mondays and Tuesdays, during the summer months (April to September) and that of the church is from 1.30 a.m. to 4.30 pm On Mondays and Fridays.
How long does a visit require?
Really the one that everyone wants. For us, the best organization for Leuven is the one we publish in the article, going first through the Great Beguinage or beguinage of Leuven, then through the Arenberg Castle and on the way and arrive at lunchtime here.
Is it possible to eat there?
Yes, in fact it is one of the most pleasant meals you can do in Leuven, far from the university environment (which you can leave for the night in the downtown breweries) in the Molen Brasserie, at the entrance and with terrace on the lake
We hope this article will be useful to incorporate the visit to your tour of Leuven, we believe it is one of those places that is very worthwhile for the world. The Park Abbey will captivate you from the moment you enter under its dominions.
Isaac, from the Park Abbey in Leuven (Belgium)