Wolvendael Park


Wolvendael, which means “valley at the bend”, is mentioned as early as 1209 in the records of the Abbey of Affligem. A remnant of the ancient Sonian Forest, the current park, which is bordered by two very old roads, Dieweg and Crabbegat, occupies an extremely hilly side of the Ukkelbeek Valley. The estate once belonged to the Fricx, Fraula, Vanderborght, Looz-Corswarem, Coghen and Balser families and to Baron Léon Janssen. Each of them contributed to the development of the park which, in 1763, at the time the château was built, still had a French-style formal garden. However, the space was soon laid out in the fashionable style of the time as a romantic English landscape garden. Today, it offers a variety of forms and layouts, combining vast scallop-edged lawns, clusters of mature trees and flowerbeds that take full advantage of the rolling terrain. It still retains an open-air theatre complemented by a small structure called the Bergerie, where the actors would change costume, and an elegant Rococo-style pavilion purchased in 1877 in Amsterdam and rebuilt here stone-by-stone. This 18th century folly, with a bell-like roof, features a façade richly decorated with fret-cut volutes. The paths and tracks have been renovated, restoring the handsome appearance of the park and allowing daring athletes, walkers and children to once again enjoy the facilities. (Listed 08/11/1972)

Practical information

  • avenue Wolvendael
    1180 Brussels
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