Tour guides can accomodate up to 25 people. For Larger groups, please book additional guides as needed
In summary :
Your visit to the Memorial 1815 Village, followed by a short walk on the battlefield, will give you both a detailed and a high-level vision of the battle within its 19th century context. You will also see first-hand how the topography influenced the events of the day. Additionally, we will view and discuss four of the battlefield monuments, illustrating the participation of key armies in the battle.
It will be done in four parts :
- A lively overview of the causes and consequences of this battle (the how and the why) as well as the details of the days of June 16 and 17 which led to it.
- The climb of the Lion Mound, the monument commemorating the Allied victory.
- An explanation of the Panorama, a gigantic fresco celebrating the 100th anniversary of the battle.
- A visit to the Wellington Museum, the old inn where the Duke of Wellington spent the nights of June 17th and 18th 1815.
This visit will then by followed by an audio-guided tour of the Memorial Museum.
The site :
The Lion of Waterloo is a monument 40 meters high, erected between 1823 and 1826 by the King of Holland at the presumed place where his son, the Prince of Orange, was wounded on June 18th. The mound is surmounted by a colossal lion symbolizing the Allied victory. It is accessed by a staircase of 226 steps.
The Panorama, a UNESCO Heritage Nominee, is a vast circular building housing a gigantic fresco, painted in 1912 to celebrate the first centenary of the battle. The canvas, which is 110 meters long and 12 meters high, is a spectacular representation of a key moment of the battle: the French cavalry charge and the Allied resistance around 16:30 p.m.
The Wellington Museum is housed in the former Bodenghien Inn, dating from 1705. In 1815, this large edifice was used as a postal relay station for horses, and was chosen by Wellington’s staff for their headquarters. Wellington spent the nights of the 17th and 18th of June 1815 here. It was also where Wellington wrote his communique announcing the victory. Via the numerous authentic souvenirs, weapons, and etchings, the 14 rooms of the museum retrace the events of the period, and perpetuate the memory of the nations and soldiers who participated in the confrontation.
Our visit :
The Lion Mound: the guide will take you up to the summit and tell you all about the battle, the strategic importance of the topography, the position and the deployment of the troops in the fields all around, the charges of the French cavalry, the allied squares, the strategy of each belligerent, the strengths, the errors, the setbacks, the anecdotes, the monuments ...
The Panorama: the guide will lead you through the diorama, relating it to the realities of the battlefield, which will allow you to appreciate the historical importance, and the pictural and heritage of this amazing recreation.
And the History of all this? Your guide will take the time to explain to you, either with the help of maps or outdoors, what led Europe to this terrible battle and why it took place in Belgium. The first days of the Waterloo Campaign, i.e. the days of June 15, 16 and 17, will also be discussed.
In the Museum, you will hear about the Treaty of Vienna, and the decision by the 7th Coalition to invade France in July 1815, and about the presence of Wellington and the Prussian leader Blucher in Belgium, as well as the events of June 14th and 15th. Through the various rooms in the museum you will learn about the Duke himself, his staff, and his allied armies. Furthermore, three rooms are dedicated respectively to the French, Prussian and Dutch-Belgian armies. You will find out why the battle taking place on the 18th of June 1815 is known as the “Battle of Waterloo” even though it did not actually take place there. We shall also discuss the importance of the participation of the Duke’s descendants in our commemorations.
: Opening hours, ticket prices, and access
Your journey from the Memorial 1815 Village to the Museum is about 10 km, and will require your own transportation.
: Entry ticket to these sites.
: The Memorial Village is wheelchair accessible, except for the Mound and the Panorama. The Wellington Museum is not wheelchair accessible.
Plan on your own transportation between the sites, except for travel between the Memorial 1815 Village and the Hougoumont Farm. Bring appropriate clothing for the weather.
Our four-legged friends are not permitted to enter the sites.
: Route du lion, 1410 Braine l’Alleud - http://www.museewellington.be/