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Royal Ardenne

Of all the 'Royal' courses in Belgium, Château Royal d'Ardenne is the most deserving of the title. It occupies part of the grounds of a 19th century castle built by King Leopold II. For a time, it was the favourite course of the Belgian royal family, several of whom became club champions, although whether their subjects were trying their hardest to beat them is not recorded. Deep in the Ardennes countryside, south-east of Dinant, the course is one of the hilliest in the region, but the reward for some arduous hauls between tee and green are the superb views for miles around – none finer than the prospect from the Leopold Tower, which contains the clubhouse. Mature trees line many of the fairways, and interesting features along the way include an ancient, ruined chapel and an open-air theatre built in 1889.

Around and about: Touring golfers can combine a Royal round with visits to two of Wallonia's prettiest courses - the hilly Five Nations Club at Méan, and the equally demanding Blue Green Club at Durbuy in the heart of the Ardennes. Other golfing options are Rougemont and Falnuée, near the handsome provincial capital of Namur. Another agreeable base in this region is Durbuy, with its quaint, cobbled streets, restaurants renowned for their crayfish and game dishes. Alternatively, try the mediaeval lace-making town of Marche, where the four-star Quartier Latin Hotel has been converted from an old Jesuit monastery.

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Belgian Tourist Office Wallonia 217 Marsh Wall London E14 9FJ Tel: 0207 531 0390 info@belgiumtheplaceto.be