- PRICES LIST
- HOTELS (BEST RATED)
- HOTELS (BEST VALUE)
- SIGHTS & LANDMARKS
- THINGS TO DO
- FESTIVALS & EVENTS
- STAY SAFE
Liège is a major city and a municipality in Belgium. It is the main city of the province of the same name, Liège, in Belgium's francophone region of Wallonia.
The city is situated in the valley of the Meuse River, in the east of Belgium, not far from borders with the Netherlands(Maastricht is about 33 km (20.5 mi) to the north) and with Germany (Aachen is about 53 km (32.9 mi) north-east). At Liège the Meuse river meets the river Ourthe. The city is part of the sillon industriel, the former industrial backbone of Wallonia. It still is the principal economic and cultural centre of the region.
The Liège municipality (i.e. the city proper) includes the former communes of Angleur, Bressoux, Chênée, Glain,Grivegnée, Jupille-sur-Meuse, Rocourt, and Wandre. In November 2012, Liège had 198,280 inhabitants. The metropolitan area, including the outer commuter zone, covers an area of 1,879 km2 (725 sq mi) and had a total population of 749,110 on 1 January 2008. This includes a total of 52 municipalities, among others, Herstal and Seraing. Liège ranks as the third most populous urban area in Belgium, after Brussels and Antwerp, and the fourth municipality after Antwerp, Ghent and Charleroi.
|TIME ZONE :||• Time zone CET (UTC+1)|
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
|AREA :||69.39 km2 (26.79 sq mi)|
|COORDINATES :||50°38′N 05°34′E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 49.10%|
• Female: 50.90 %
|AREA CODE :||04|
|POSTAL CODE :||4000–4032|
|DIALING CODE :||+32 4|
|WEBSITE :||Official Website|
Liège (German: Lüttich, Dutch: Luik) is the largest city of Wallonia, the French-speaking part of Belgium, and the capital city of the namesake province. Located at the foot ofArdennes on the river Meuse, it has been a prominent urban centre since the Middle Ages, but really blossomed during the industrial revolution, when it grew to become Belgium's third-largest metropolis, after Brussels and Antwerp. Thanks to its strategic position, Liège still enjoys relative affluence and economic importance, in contrast to its fellow Wallon cities farther south.
Despite its size and location in-between some of the most-visited cities in Europe, Liège sees very little tourist traffic. Those who find it along their itinerary might be surprised to find the purported industrial city to be quite green, with wide boulevards, an interesting, if a bit disorderly, mix of architecture from different periods, much greenery and picturesque riverbanks and hillsides. There are also quite a few museums and other points of interest, enough for at least a busy day trip.
Liège has been an important city since the early Middle Ages. It was the capital of the Principality (prince-bishopric) of Liège, which remained an independent state until the French Revolution (around 1789). In the 19th century it became an early centre of industrialism. Today it is a large city of 200,000 inhabitants, with a total 750,000 in its metropolitan area. The city has an important Italian community, making up 5% of the population.
The central area of Liège presents itself as a rather interesting mix of a historic town centre (dotted with a few extremely brutalist buildings from the 1960s and 70s), a rather elegant new town with wide boulevards, tall apartment buildings (some Art Deco), narrow street with small businesses, a few pretty parks, and a few interesting shopping arcades. The outskirts of Liège consist mainly of 2 very distinctive areas: large industrial complexes sprawling on the river's bank in the north and the south (with the cities of Seraing and Herstal) and working-class areas in the east and the west with mainly spare green neighborhood for healthy people.
Liège is located just at the beginning of the Ardennes, which makes the landscape of the south very different than the rest of the city, with high hills and abundant forests (Sart-tilman and beyond).
- Tourist office (Office Du Tourisme De Liege), Féronstrée 92, . 9:00 am – 5:00 pm.
- The 16th century palace of the Prince-Bishops of Liège is built on the Place St Lambert, where the old St. Lambert's Cathedral used to stand before the French Revolution. An archeological display, theArcheoforum, can be visited under the Place St Lambert.
- The perron on the nearby Place du Marché was once the symbol of justice in the Prince-Bishopric and is now the symbol of the city. It stands in front of the 17th century city hall.
- The present Liège Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Paul, contains a treasury and Saint Lambert’s tomb. It is one of the original seven collegiate churches, which include the German-Romanesque St Bartholomew's Church (Saint Barthélémy) and the church of St Martin.
- The church of Saint-James (Saint-Jacques) is probably the most beautiful medieval church in Liège. It is built in the so-called Flamboyant-Gothic style, while the porch is early Renaissance. The statues are by Liège sculptor Jean Del Cour. Saint-Jacques also contains 29 spectacular 14th century misericords.
- The main museums in Liège are: MAMAC (Museum of Modern & Contemporary Art), Museum of Walloon Life, and Museum of Walloon Art & Religious Art (Mosan art). TheGrand Curtius Museum is an elegantly furnished mansion from the 17th century along the Meuse River, housing collections of Egyptology, weaponry, archaeology, fine arts, religious art and Mosan art.
- Other sites of interest include the historical city centre (the Carré), the Hors-Château area, the Outremeuse area, the parks and boulevards along the River Meuse, theCitadel, the 374 steps stairway "Montagne de Bueren", leading from Hors-Château to the Citadel, 'Médiacité' shopping mall designed by Ron Arad Architects and the Liège-Guillemins railway station designed by Santiago Calatrava.
Early Middle Ages
Although settlements already existed in Roman times, the first references to Liège are from 558, when it was known as Vicus Leudicus. Around 705, Saint Lambert of Maastrichtis credited with completing the Christianization of the region, indicating that up to the early 8th-century the religious practices of antiquity had survived in some form. Christian conversion may still not have been quite universal, since Lambert was murdered in Liège and thereafter regarded as a martyr for his faith. To enshrine St. Lambert's relics, his successor, Hubertus (later to become St. Hubert), built a basilica near the bishop's residence which became the true nucleus of the city. A few centuries later, the city became the capital of a prince-bishopric, which lasted from 985 till 1794. The first prince-bishop, Notger, transformed the city into a major intellectual and ecclesiastical centre, which maintained its cultural importance during the Middle Ages. Pope Clement VI recruited several musicians from Liège to perform in the Papal court at Avignon, thereby sanctioning the practice of polyphony in the religious realm. The city was renowned for its many churches, the oldest of which, St Martin's, dates from 682. Although nominally part of the Holy Roman Empire, in practice it possessed a large degree of independence.
Late Middle Ages and Renaissance
The strategic position of Liège has made it a frequent target of armies and insurgencies over the centuries. It was fortified early on with a castle on the steep hill that overlooks the city's western side. In 1345, the citizens of Liège rebelled against Prince-Bishop Engelbert III de la Marck, their ruler at the time, and defeated him in battle near the city. Shortly after, a unique political system formed in Liège, whereby the city's 32 guilds shared sole political control of the municipal government. Each person on the register of each guild was eligible to participate, and each guild's voice was equal, making it the most democratic system that the Low Countries had ever known. The system spread to Utrecht, and left a democratic spirit in Liège that survived the Middle Ages.
At the end of the Liège Wars, a rebellion against rule from Burgundy that figured prominently in the plot of Sir Walter Scott's 1823 novel Quentin Durward, Duke Charles the Bold of Burgundy, witnessed by King Louis XI of France, captured and largely destroyed the city in 1468, after a bitter siege which was ended with a successful surprise attack. Liège was technically still part of the Holy Roman Empire. After 1477, the city came under the rule of the Habsburgs and, after 1555, under Spanish sovereignty, although its immediate rule remained in the hands of its prince-bishops. The reign of Erard de la Marck (1506–1538) coincides with the Renaissance Liégeoise. During the Counter-Reformation, the diocese of Liège was split and progressively lost its role as a regional power. In the 17th century the prince-bishops came from the Bavarian family Wittelsbach. They ruled over Cologne and other bishoprics in the northwest of the Holy Roman Empire as well. During this medieval period, three women from the Liège region made significant contributions to Christian spirituality: Elizabeth Spaakbeek, Christina the Astonishing, and Marie of Oignies.
18th century to World War I
The Duke of Marlborough captured the city from the Bavarian prince-bishop and his French allies in 1704 during the War of the Spanish Succession.
In the middle of the eighteenth century the ideas of the French Encyclopédistes began to gain popularity in the region. Bishop de Velbruck (1772–84), encouraged their propagation, thus prepared the way for the Liège Revolution which started in the episcopal city on 18 August 1789 and led to the creation of the Republic of Liège before it was invaded by counter-revolutionary forces of the Habsburg Monarchy in 1791.
In the course of the 1794 campaigns of the French Revolution, the French army took the city and imposed strongly anticlerical regime, destroying St. Lambert's Cathedral. The overthrow of the prince-bishopric was confirmed in 1801 by the Concordat co-signed byNapoléon Bonaparte and Pope Pius VII. France lost the city in 1815 when the Congress of Vienna awarded it to the United Kingdom of the Netherlands. Dutch rule lasted only until 1830, when the Belgian Revolution led to the establishment of an independent, Catholic and neutral Belgium which incorporated Liège. After this, Liège developed rapidly into a major industrial city which became one of continental Europe's first large-scale steel making centres. The Walloon Jacquerie of 1886 saw a large-scale working class revolt.No less than 6,000 regular troops were called into the city to quell the unrest, while strike spread through the whole sillon industriel.
Liège's fortifications were redesigned by Henri Alexis Brialmont in the 1880s and a chain of twelve forts was constructed around the city to provide defence in depth. This presented a major obstacle to Germany's army in 1914, whose Schlieffen Planrelied on being able to quickly pass through the Meuse valley and the Ardennes en route to France. The German invasion on August 5, 1914 soon reached Liège, which was defended by 30,000 troops under General Gérard Leman . The forts initially held off an attacking force of about 100,000 men but were pulverised into submission by a five-day bombardment by the Germans' 42 cm Big Berthahowitzers. Due to faulty planning of the protection of the underground defense tunnels beneath the main citadel, one direct artillery hit caused a huge explosion, which eventually led to the surrender of the Belgian forces. The Belgian resistance was shorter than had been intended, but the twelve days of delay caused by the siege nonetheless contributed to the eventual failure of the German invasion of France. The city was subsequently occupied by the Germans until the end of the war. Liège received the Légion d'Honneur for its resistance in 1914.
World War II to the present
The Germans returned in 1940, this time taking the forts in only three days. Most Jews were saved, with the help of the sympathising population, as many Jewish children and refugees were hidden in the numerous monasteries. The German occupiers were expelled by the Allies of World War II in September 1944 but Liège was subsequently subjected to intense aerial bombardment, with more than 1,500 V-1 and V-2missiles landing in the city between its liberation and the end of the war.
After the war ended, the Royal Question came to the fore, since many saw king Leopold III as collaborating with the Germans during the war. In July 1950, André Renard, leader of the Liégeois FGTB launched the General strike against Leopold III of Belgium and "seized control over the city of Liège". The strike ultimately led to Leopold's abdication.
Liège began to suffer from a relative decline of its industry, particularly the coal industry, and later the steel industry, producing high levels of unemployment and stoking social tension. During the 1960-1961 Winter General Strike, disgruntled workers went on a rampage and severely damaged the central railway station Guillemins. The unrest was so intense that "army troops had to wade through caltrops, trees, concrete blocks, car and crane wrecks to advance. Streets were dug up. Liège saw the worst fighting on 6 January 1961. In all, 75 people were injured during seven hours of street battles."
Liège is also known as a traditionally socialist city. In 1991, powerful Socialist André Cools, a former Deputy Prime Minister, was gunned down in front of his girlfriend's apartment. Many suspected that the assassination was related to a corruption scandal which swept the Socialist Party, and the national government in general, after Cools' death. Two men were sentenced to twenty years in jail in 2004, for involvement in Cools' murder.
Liège has shown some signs of economic recovery in recent years with the opening up of borders within the European Union, surging steel prices, and improved administration. Several new shopping centres have been built, and numerous repairs carried out.
On 13 December 2011, there was a grenade and gun attack at Place Saint-Lambert. An attacker, later identified as Nordine Amrani, aged 33, armed with grenades and an assault rifle, was reported as having attacked people waiting at the bus stop shortly before 1:30 p.m. CET. Six fatalities were reported, including the attacker (who shot himself), and 123 people were reported injured, among them a two-year-old child who sustained life-threatening injuries. Police reported that the situation was "under control" by 2:50 p.m.
Climate data for Liège
|Average high °C (°F)||3|
|Average low °C (°F)||−2|
Liège is the most important city of the Wallon region from an economic perspective. In the past, Liège was one of the most important industrial centres in Europe, particularly in steel-making. Starting in 1817, John Cockerill extensively developed the iron and steel industry. The industrial complex of Seraing was the largest in the world. It once boasted numerous blast furnaces and mills. Liège has also been an important centre for gunsmithing since the Middle ages and the arms industry is still strong today, with the headquarters of FN Herstal and CMI Defence being located in Liège. Although from 1960 on the secondary sector is going down and now is a mere shadow of its former self, the manufacture of steel goods remain important.
The economy of the region is now diversified; the most important centres are: Mechanical industries (Aircraft engine and Spacecraft propulsion), space technology, information technology, biotechnologyand the production of water, beer or chocolate. Liège has an important group of headquarters dedicated to high-technology, such as Techspace Aero, which manufactures pieces for the Airbus A380 or the rocket Ariane 5. Other stand-out sectors include Amóswhich manufactures optical components for telescopes and Drytec, fabric of compressed air dryers. Liège also has many other electronic companies such as SAP, EVS, Gillam,AnB, Balteau, IP Trade. Other prominent businesses are the global leader in light armament FN Herstal, the beer company Jupiler, the chocolate company Galler, and the water and soda companies Spa and Chaudfontaine. A science park south east of the city, near the University of Liège campus, houses spin-offs and high technology businesses.
Prices in Liege
MARKET / SUPERMARKET
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€1.25|
|Bottle of Wine||1 bottle||€7.00|
|Dinner (Low-range)||for 2||€34.00|
|Dinner (Mid-range)||for 2||€|
|Dinner (High-range)||for 2||€60.00|
|Mac Meal or similar||1 meal||€7.80|
|Beer (Imported)||0.33 l||€3.00|
|Beer (domestic)||0.5 l||€3.00|
|Coctail drink||1 drink||€6.00|
|Men’s Haircut||1 haircut||€|
|Mobile (prepaid)||1 min.||€0.19|
|Pack of Marlboro||1 pack||€6.00|
|Toilet paper||4 rolls||€1.75|
CLOTHES / SHOES
|Jeans (Levis 501 or similar)||1||€90.00|
|Dress summer (Zara, H&M)||1||€34.00|
|Sport shoes (Nike, Adidas)||1||€91.00|
|Local Transport||1 ticket||€2.05|
60 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- meals in cheap restaurant
- public transport
- cheap hotel
237 € per day
Estimated cost per 1 day including:
- mid-range meals and drinks
Transportation - Get In
- Liège airport Specialising in freight (7th biggest cargo airport in Europe), the airport sees mainly seasonal holiday charter flights to destinations around the Mediterranean. Regular passenger connections are provided by local Belgian airline VLM and some other airlines like BMI seeking opportunities to capitalize on local business interests (and charging accordingly). Reaching the city centre with public transportation is a bit tricky. Check the TEC (local city bus) website for further information.
- Brussels Airport is your most likely point of entry into Belgium. To reach Liège, take the train to Louvain/Leuven, or Brussels-Nord and change for Liège.
- Brussels South Charleroi Airport , located in Charleroi, is an alternative for low-cost airlines such as Ryanair and WizzAir. From the airport, take the city bus Line A (stop is outside of the departure hall), which costs €3 one way to Charleroi-Sud (south) train station, then the train to Liège-Guillemins. Train departs once every hour from 5AM. Last train leaves at 23:00. The trip takes approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.
- Maastricht Airport is also close to the city. Ryanair has some service from the city (a lot less than Charleroi though). Transportation to Liège can be done by train.
- Frankfurt Airport has a thrice daily direct high-speed train link to Liège-Guillemins. More frequencies can be found if you make a stop in Cologne.
Liège-Guillemins is the main station, located on the southwest part of the city. Thalys and ICE high-speed trains serve Brussels, Paris, Aachen,Cologne and Frankfurt. Beware that unlike most train stations in Belgium, Liège-Guillemins is not a walking distance away from the city centre (20-25min). You can take a bus which cost €1.40 one way, or taxi which cost around 8-10 euros. The cheapest alternative being changing to another train that's heading to the station called "Liège-Palais". The fare of this trip is included in your ticket to Liège-Guillemins. The trip takes around 6 mins.
From Brussels, intercity service runs at least hourly and takes about 60 minutes from Brussels Nord. From Brussels Airport, take the airport shuttle to Leuven and take intercity service from there. From the Netherlands, connect in Maastricht. Trains run at least hourly and take about 30 minutes.
Once you are at Liège-Guillemins station, you can get to city centre by changing to a train heading for Gare du Palais, or by taking the number 1 or number 4 bus just outside the station to Place St. Lambert. Another alternative is route 48 which takes you to the Opera. Note that all routes run both ways at the stop of Liège-Guillemins station, make sure to take the buses that have either "Pl. St. Lambert" or "Opera" on their destination sign. Like aforementioned, change train to Liège-Palais station also takes you directly to centre.
Liège is well-connected by bus, notably in the Eurolines network on rue des Guillemins, near the train station.
Liège is the crossroads for several major motorways. Its "ring" has 6 branches in clockwise order:
- the E25, to the south, towards Luxembourg and into France via Metz, Nancy, Lyon
- the E42, to the west, crosses Wallonia via Mons/Bergen before entering France via Valenciennes, Paris
- the E40, to the west, leading to the Belgian coast via Brussels
- the E313, leading to Antwerp and on to the large coastal cities of the Netherlands
- the E25, to the north, with Maastricht a stone's throw away (30 km) and the rest of the Netherlands beyond
- the E40, to the east, entering Germany via Aachen. A second branch (Actually the E42) splits off at Verviers, heading to Trier.
Since it is a fairly large city, many motorway exits are signposted for "Liège". When coming from Germany or Netherlands, follow the E25 to its end, then follow the road signs to the center. If you are coming from Luxembourg, exit at "Angleur" and follow signs to the center, or to continue on to the exit marked "Liège-centre". Finally, coming from Paris,Lille, Brussels, or Antwerp, follow signs to Luxembourg until you reach the exit marked "Liège-centre." When coming from Flanders, Liège is named as "Luik."
There are a number of covered car parks situated conveniently in the centre costing €2.20 an hour.
Individuals arriving with their own boat are welcome at the port des Yachts.
Many organised cruises departing from Maastricht stop in the center of Liège, on the right bank (quai Marcatchou to quai Van Beneden).
Transportation - Get Around
TEC is the main bus company. Most lines converge towards one of the city-center bus "terminals." These terminals are located at Gare Léopold, Place Saint-Lambert, Place de la République Française, and around the Opéra/Theater (all the four are very close to one another). The names of these five sites are used to indicate the direction of the bus, according to the line taken.
Several other lines leave from the train station Liège-Guillemins. Among them, two lines link the station with city center: the #4, a circular line (direction "Bavière" to go from the station to the center, direction "d'Harscamp" for the reverse trip), and the #1 which runs train station to city center and on to Coronmeuse. There also is a few lines that start from the intersection of the Boulevard d'Avroy and the "Pont d'Avroy", the main shopping street. Unfortunately, however, few lines run after midnight.
More and more bus stops now show the waiting time for the next bus on each line, and many busses are equipped to display the next stop and adapted for people with reduced mobility. Nevertheless, be aware that the next stop screens are not always synchronised with the bus stops. For people using a bus line they're not familiar with, ask the driver to warn you when you are arriving at the bus stop you are looking for. You can ask for a free printed version of each bus schedule at the terminal of the line.
Unlike most Belgian cities, Liège has no an inner ring built along the path of the old city walls. Instead, the main streets were laid out along the old branches of the river, which makes their organisation a bit obscure.
Leave your car in one of the city-center parking garages, especially if you have no map of to your destination.
Here are the main routes for cars:
- the motorway E40-E25 that crosses parts of the city
- the Boulevards "d'Avroy" and "de la Sauvenière", the main route between the center and the train station
- the Quais "de la Meuse" and "de la Dérivation", which link to/from the two branches of the E25
Travelling by bike in the city center is easy, but the hillsides can be a bit steep (between 5 and 15%). Reaching the higher neighborhoods will require a bit of training and a multi-speed bike!
Cycling paths are regularly added and improved, though the main roads remain a bit dangerous. Most one-way streets can be travelled in the opposite direction by cyclists. A map of cycling paths is available at the tourist information office. In addition, there's a "Ravel" (a path for walkers and cyclists) along the right bank of the river Meuse.
Most of the areas in city center are easily accessible on foot, and walking provides an interesting perspective on the city itself. The trip from the train station at Guillemins to the city center requires a bit more timeL about 30 min.
- BEST RATED -
- BEST VALUE -
- Sunday morning market at la rive gauche
- The Marché de la Batte is where most locals visit on Sundays. The one of the longest markets in Europe stretches along the Meuse River by the Université de Liège and attracts many visitors to Liège. The market typically runs from early morning to 2 o'clock in the afternoon every weekend year long. Produce, clothing, and snack vendors are the main concentration of the market.
- Flea Markets at Saint Gilles (every Saturday morning on Boulevard Louis Hillier) and Saint Pholien (every Friday morning on Boulevard de la Constitution) also attract many visitors.
- Val Saint Lambert crystal, now sold throughout the world, makes an exceptional gift in the "splurge" category.
- The tourist information office sells local artists' products including scarfs with medieval motifs and ties with contemporary artistic designs.
- Marionnettes of "Tchantchès", a character from local folklore embodying the Liégeois attitude, are available in the 6 marionette theaters in the city.
Other typical purchases are food and drink products:
- As elsewhere in Belgium, pralines (filled chocolates) and the numerous cheeses and beers are a must.
- Local products include "Herve" cheese (with a strong smell!), "Sirop de Liège" (made from a mix of apples and pears and typically used for cooking/baking), and cider (the alcoholic kind).
- "Pèkèt" (genièvre) is an alcoholic beverage available in countless varieties.
- For sweets, you can't go far without encountering the famous Liège waffles, smelling of cinnamon and sugar. They're best when freshly-cooked, though the pre-packaged variety also exists and has spread to many other countries.
- Other sweets are available depending on the season: boûkètes (dark crêpes with raisins, eaten with brown sugar) are mainly available for 15 August and at Christmas, while lacquemants/lackmans (dry waffles filled with a mix of sugar and other sweets) are found at the fairs.
- If you find them, try "cûtès peûres" (baked pears), which unfortunately seems to have disappeared from the street vendors.
- Liège coffee (café liégeois) is originally from Vienna but was rebaptised by the Parisiens to show their support for the heroic resistance in Liège at the start of the first world war.
Shopping in city center
The best options for shopping are around Place Cathédrale and Place Saint Lambert, and in particular at Vinâve d'Ile (Celio...), Saint-Michel (Van den Borre, Delhaize, C&A), the Opera Galleries (Zara, Springfield) and the Saint Lambert Galleries (FNAC, Média Markt, Inno, Champion), as well as along the roads towards the center (rues Féronstrée, Saint-Gilles, Puits-en-Sock in Outremeuse, Grétry in Longdoz...)
Shopping outside city center
Several large commercial centers are located on the outskirts of the city:
- Belle-Ile, Quai des Vennes 1 (take bus 377 from the Opera) (Angleur)).North-American style shopping mall with Carrefour on site
- Médiacité shopping centre, Boulevard Raymond Poincaré 7 (easily accessible by car (with on-site carparking) or bus - 4, 26, 26, 31, 17, 29, 33, 35, 38B (Pont Longdoz stop), Rocourt, Boncelles, Herstal...). 126 stores
- Hypermarkt Carrefour HERSTAL, Rue Basse Campagne 1, Herstal. Large supermarket. Has a small international section (Italian,Spain,USA,UK,Asia,North Africa) for those missing things from home.
Regional specialities include:
- boulets sauce-lapin, meatballs in a sauce made from Sirop de Liège, onions, vinegar and prunes, accompanied of course by frites - french fries. The boulet even has its own critics and reviews.
- la potée liégeoise, a country dish made from beans, potatoes, and bacon bits cooked together and drenched in vinegar.
- les boûkètes, dark crêpes served at New Year's Eve or other festive occasions
- le matoufèt, a cross between a crêpe and an omelette, made from flour, eggs, milk and bacon bits, and served either salty or sweet.
- la tarte au riz, originally from the neighboring city of Verviers or the area of Tancrémont
Other local recipes are available online.
Prices unfortunately are fairly high, as in most other Belgian cities. Budget restaurants will cost about €12-€15 per person, drinks included, mid-range restaurants between €25 and €50, and splurge restaurants well over that!
For budget solutions, snack shops like any of the sanwicheries or kebab shops offer cheap yet tasty food. A Döner kebab typically costs 3-5 euro, and a sandwich is around 2-4. Note that in Liège all snack shops charge 50 cents for sauce, and usually another 50 cents for vegetables. For example you can see a meatball sandwich for 2 euro on the price list, however; after the sauce and the vegetables it will be 3 euro in total. It is recommended to look for convenient stores for soft drinks as they're over-priced in snack bars.
Obtaining meals outside of conventional times can be a challenge, many restaurant do not serve been 2 and 6 in the afternoon, those that do tend to be full and you can expect to wait some time for service.
There are Northern American fastfood chain in the city: A McDonald's is located near the Opera, a BigMac meal is about €6, a Subway can be found behind the city hall, and a Pizza Hut can be found near the Opera.
- Deli France, Gallerie St. Lambert.Sandwicherie €5-€6 can cover a sandwich and a drink.
- Deli France (near Pont d'Avory).Sandwicherie
- Au Tchantchès, rue Grande Bèche(Outremeuse district).Restaurant/Brasserie with traditional decor.
- Café Lequet, 17 Quai sur Meuse. Local cuisine and ambiance. Try the boulet-frites.
- Le Venetto, rue de la Madeleine. One of the best Italian restaurants in Liège, limited menu but great atmosphere and unbeatable prices.
- Touch and Go, rue des Carmes. Specialising in pitas and do-it-yourself salads. Especially popular with students.
- Aux pâtes fraîches, 17 rue Saint-Gilles.
- L'Amarante, rue des Carmes.
- La Cigalière, 29 rue de la Régence. Sandwiches, salads, breakfasts, and crêpes - all top quality.
- Amour, Maracas et Salami (français), 78 rue Sur-la-Fontaine.
- C si bon!, Boulevard d'Avroy 238. Sandwiches, Salades & Catering Service
- Amon Nanesse, Rue du stalon, 1-3(behind the town hall), .
- As Ouhès (aux oiseaux - for the birds), Place du Marché 21,.
- L'industrie, 6 rue Saint Gilles (at the start, on the right). nice brasserie specialising in mussels
- The Kitchen, 139 bd de la Sauvenière, . concept restaurant but friendly and warm
- Le Vaudrée, 109 rue Val Benoit 4031 Angleur, . 40 Beers on tap and 1200 Bottles, Fantastic food as well.
- Cafe Lequet, Quai sur Meuse 17. For the local meatballs, Boulet à la liégeoise.
Sights & Landmarks
Place St. Lambert is a major square in the centre, where a number of key sights may be found. It was the site of Gothic Cathedral of Our Lady and St (Cathédrale Notre-Dame-et-Saint-Lambert), representation of religious power, torn down at the start of the 19th century after the revolution of Liège and today memorialized by metal columns and a design traced on the ground. At Place Saint Lambert 9-17, admire the neo-classic façades, dating from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. }}
- Palace of the Prince-Bishops. Composed of the Palace of Justice (classic façade at Place Saint Lambert 18) and the Provincial Palace (lateral neo-gothic façade at place Notger 2). This palace is the heart of the city, and represents the political power of the old Prince-Bishops of Liège.
- archéoforum, . Open 10AM-6PM from Tuesday to Saturday, 11AM-6PM on Sunday, closed on Monday. an underground archeological site with the remains of the three (successive) cathedrals on the site, as well as a building from Roman times. €5.50 (Guided); €3.00 (Un-Guided).
- Hôtel de ville de Liège (La Violette), place du Marché, 2. Perron, and houses along the market square. The town hall, is an elegant classic building. It was built in 1714, during reconstruction after the French attacks in 1691. It can be visited on rare occasions only, except for the "salle des pas perdus" - "room of lost steps" which is freely accessible. The houses on the square, with their charming blue stone and brick faces, date from the same period. The Perron, symbol of the city's freedom, is at the center of the square above the fountain that acts as its support. The perron is one of the symbols of the city and was used to render justice.
Other sights in the historic city centre include:
- Hôtel d’Ansembourg, Feronstrée 114, . now a museum, is worth visiting for the well-preserved original interior €3,80.
- Musée des Beaux-Arts de la Ville de Liège (Museum of Fine Arts), en Féronstrée 86, . Open 1-6PM Tu-Sa, 11AM-4:30PM Su, closed Mo. a modern building, has a panorama of works by regional painters since the Roman times. €3,80.
- Curtius Palace (Grand Curtius), quai de Maestricht 13, . This imposing 8-story building from the start of the 17th century was the store of a rich arms merchant, art and history collections
- Hôtel de Hayme de Bomal, quai de Maestricht 8 and rue Feronstrée 122. was an official building under French rule and twice welcomed Napoleon.
- Saint Barthélémy Church, rue Saint Barthélémy 2, . Open 10-12AM and 2-5PM from Monday to Saturday, 2-5PM Sundays. was the last of 7 "collégiales liégeoises" to be built, near the end of the 11th century. Recently renovated, it is home to the masterwork of the Liège goldsmiths from the Middle Ages: the baptismal fonts from the old parish church of the cathedral. €1,25.
- Museum of Wallonian Life (Musée de la Vie Wallonne), Cour des Mineurs, . is an ethnological mueseum hosted in an old convent
- Museum of Religious Art, rue Mère Dieu 1, . Open 11AM-6PM Tu-Sa, 11AM-4PM Su, closed Mo. will be integrated into the future Museum Grand Curtius, but can now be visited separately €3,80.
- Montagne de Bueren (Mountain of Bueren and the slopes of the Citadel).Climb the imposing staircase of 373 steps framed by small houses and gardens, or opt for the smaller streets and stairways leading up to the Citadel's slopes. From the top, you'll have a lovely view of the city, from the Palace roofs to the ancient watchtower.
- La Cathédrale Saint Paul de Liège (St. Paul's Cathedral, Liège), Place de la Cathédrale 1, .
- Collégiale Saint-Denis de Liège (Church of St. Denis), Rue Cathédrale, 6.former fortified collegiate church with 12th century tower
- streets Hors Château and En Feronstrée. are worth a visit for the architecture of the large villas and more modest houses, most dating to the 18th century
- streets Fond Saint Servais, Pierreuse and du Péry. are typically quaint and lead up to the remains of the old citadel, with an ancient well, a monument commemorating the Second World War, and in particular a superb view over the city.
On the opposite bank of the river, the Outremeuse district has few memorable buildings, notably the Rue Roture, but a welcoming atmosphere. Also the most-visited museum complex in Liège and Wallonia, comprised of the Aquarium, the House of Science, and the Zoology Museum, all housed in a neo-classic University building.
- The main buildings of interest in the district are:
- Convent "des Récollets", rue Georges Simenon 2, 4, 9-13.
- Saint Nicolas Church, rue Fosse-aux-raines 7. open everyday 8AM to 12AM.
- Sainte Barbe" hospice, place Ste Barbe.
- stable of the Fonck barracks, boulevard de la Constitution.
- Bavière hospital, boulevard de la Constitution.
- Destenay school, boulevard Saucy 16.
- Physiology Institute, place Delcourt 17.
- Grétry Museum, Rue des Récollets 34, . 2PM-4PM Tu&Fr, 10AM-12PM Su.
- Museum of Tchantchès, rue Surlet 56, . 2-4PM Su except July, Tu&Th. dedicated to the city mascot who is also the main character for the local marrionnette theaters
- Maison de la Science, Quai Edouard Van Beneden 22, .
- Aquarium-Muséum de Liège, Quai Edouard Van Beneden 22, .
- Departing from the amphitheater along the quay, a bateau-mouche (covered boat) offers river tours, from 1 Apr to 30 Oct (11AM, 1PM, 3PM and 5PM, €6, +32 (0)4 221 9221 et +32 (0)4 366 5021).
Things to do
- Visit the Carré District, where you can celebrate or party on any day, at any time. It's the preferred district of students, alternating shops and cafés, many of which allow dancing (sometimes on the tables!).
- The Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Opera, and Theater de la Place head up the cultural life in Liège.
- Philharmonic Orchestra.
- Royal Opera (Opéra Royal de Wallonie), Place de l'Opéra,.
- Theater de la Place.
- Liège is the European city with the most theaters per person. Liège has an international reputation especially for its marionnette theaters, whose performances often involve the traditional folklore character Tchantchès in an unbelievably wide range of situations. The most-known marionnette theaters can be found at:
- Museum of Wallonian Life (Wednesdays and school holidays at 1430 and Sundays at 1030, Cour des Mineurs, +32 (0)4 237 9040, open even when the museum is closed.)
- Museum of Tchantchès (Oct to end Apr, Sundays at 1030 and Wednesdays at 1430, rue Surlet 56, +32 (0)4 342 7575)
- Theater Al Botroule, Rue Hocheporte 3, . literally, "in the belly-button"
- Theater Denis, Rue Sainte Marguerite 302, .
- Theater Mabotte, Rue Mabotte 125, Seraing, .
- Movie theaters include Le Parc and Le Churchill for European films; Le Palace and Kinepolis for big-name blockbusters; and soon UGC Longdoz in the future "media city".
- Le Forum, rue Pont d’Avroy 45. a small but exceptionally-decorated venue, offers concerts, comedy performances, etc. Country Hall (in the outskirts) is a relatively new venue for huge shows and sporting events.
- Le Trocadéro. is the most Liégeois of Parisian cabarets, or the most Parisian of Liège cabarets, depending on how you look at it, while two other venues (La Bouch’rit and le Comiqu'Art) offer dinner-show combinations.
- La Zone (Music club), Quai de l'Ourthe, 42 - 4020, , e-mail:[email protected]. is the place in Liège for alternative and underground music and arts. Opens only on events, check their program on the web before going there. Non expensive bar with plenty of soft drinks, beers and wine.
- There are numerous sports clubs including, oddly enough, three different rowing clubs. RCAE, a university club but open to everyone, offers a range of sports from parachuting to spelunking. The sports fields at Xhovémont, Cointe or Sart Tilman are ideal for practice, while the soccer stadium of Standard (the Liège team) is the place to show your enthusiasm as a fan. The ice rink, dating from the water exposition of 1939, is in its last seasons before being moved, while a new swimming pool with modern facilities including a diving tower will soon be constructed in the center. (The previous one is being converted to a museum.) Other pools are spread throughout the city, notably in Outremeuse.
- For those who prefer a calmer sport, cycling or jogging is perfect along the quays of the Meuse. The woods at Coteaux de la Citadelle, Chartreuse, and Sart Tilman are all close, as are the magnificent countrysides of the Ardennes (with Condroz, Hesbaye, and Herve lending themselves particularly well to hiking and mountain-biking).
- A circuit is dedicated to Simenon (author of the Maigret stories), and a museum will be opening shortly.
Festivals and events
- The Feast of the Assumption (15 August) is celebrated here by the entire city and countless visitors.
- The celebrations of 15 August in Outremeuse welcome more than 300,000 people each year.
- The fair, held since the city was established, has become a fun-fair. It takes place from the first weekend in October to the second weekend in November (6 weeks).
- The Christmas Village, one of the biggest and oldest in the country, has more than one million visitors each year.
- The Celebrations of Wallonia (2nd weekend in September), the nuit des Coteaux (night events in the historic center), the Secret Gardens and Corners Day (la journée Jardins et Coins secrets - 3rd Sunday in June), and the heritage days (les journées du patrimoine - end September) are other key dates in Liège.
- The Festival of Walking, in the second half of August, offers urban walks.
The area known as "Le Carré" offers numerous options to drink and party 365 days per year, with a young, vibrant, student atmosphere. Also worth a visit: the trendier Place du Marché, and the area around Place Cathédrale, to see and be seen.
- Le Vaudrée 2, Rue Saint-Gilles. where you can taste a good thousand or so Belgian and foreign beers. Santé!
- La Maison du Péquet (behind the town hall). mainly serves fruit-flavored versions of genièvre, known locally as péquet.
- Pot au Lait, rue Soeurs de Hasque. is a café popular with exchange students living in the region.
- Les Olivettes, rue Pied du Pont des Arches. offers an ambience from an entirely different time.
- Millennium (about 10 km outside the center in the commercial area "Boncelles").nightclub.
- La Zone, Quai de l'Ourthe, 42 (Outremeuse). is a club for alternative and underground music and culture with a non expensive bar
- Le Sabor Latino. is a club opening onto the boulevard de la Sauvenière.
In addition, many of the cafés in the Le Carré area are a good alternative, with plenty of dancing and typically no entrance fee.
Safety in Liege
Liège is generally a safe city during daytime. However, be cautious at night especially for single females. It is not recommended for women to walk alone in the evenings as many foreign female students have experienced being followed late at night. Robbery is rare but harassment to single females occurs often, mostly verbal but some travelers have experienced assaults in off-downtown area. If where you're staying is more than a 5-min walk off the centre, it is suggested to take a cab (they have a line-ups around The Opera and Pont d'Avroy bus terminal) after 10PM.