Itinerary - Lion of Waterloo

Duration:1 hour

Duration for all the aventure: approximately 3 hours


How to get there ?

Ring Est de Bruxelles (Motorway Brussels - Mons), exit at Lion de Waterloo.The take off site is situated in the garden of the restaurant "Kaiyou", see adress below.

Description :

The Lion of Waterloo gazes from the summit of its 40-metre-high mound across the great battlefield of June 18, 1815, with its farmhouses and rolling fields and the nearby villages of Braine-l'Alleud, Genappe, Plancenoit (Lasne) and Waterloo.

On June 16, the first clashes took pace at Ligny and Quatre-Bras, as the opposing armies came to grips with each other. This lead to the retreat of the allied troops commanded by the Duke of Wellington and the Prussian Marshal Blücher, and to the advance of the Emperor Napoleon's French army.

Napoleon spent the night of June 17 at Vieux-Genappe. Wellington slept in Waterloo while his army bivouacked a few kilometres to the south, close to the farm of Mont-Saint-Jean.

Blücher's Prusssians were out of contact to the east.

Sunday June 18 was the decisive day for both armies, whose troops took up their positions in the morning. Battle commenced half-an-hour before noon with a French attack on the fortified farm of Hougoumont, followed by an infantry assault on the Allies' main line. Both were beaten back, and a counter-charge of the British cavalry was stopped by French artillery. The French cavalry under Marshal Ney, the 'bravest of the brave', then attacked, charging time and again but faring no better against Allied infantry and artillery. French infantry captured the fortified farm of La Haie-Sainte, clearing the way for a strike at the Allied centre..

With the Prussians attacking his flank at Plancenoit and the Papelotte farm, Napoleon threw his elite Old Guard forward in a final effort to break Wellington 's line. The Allies held firm and the Old Guard retreated under a storm of musketry, cannon balls and grape-shot. A general advance by the Allies turned the French defeat into a rout, with Napoleon himself barely escaping.

The Lion

Some 28 tons of cast-iron were needed to make this impressive monument, which was transported by steamer from Liege then transferred to a waggon pulled by 20 horses to arrive at the battlefield. It surmounts the 169-metres-inmeter mound raised by the Dutch between 1823 and 1826 on the spot where it is believed the Prince of Orange was wounded. The mound required 290,485 cubic metres of earth from the surrounding fields to attain its height of 40.5 metres and circumference of 520 metres, while the Lion is supported by a central column of masonry and stands on a 4.5-metre-high pedestal. Climbing the mound's 226 steps allows visitors to experience a magnificent view over the battlefield.

Come and enjoy this magnificent sight from the heights of a hot air balloon.

Address :

Restaurant Kaiyou
Chaussée de Charleroi 38
1380 Lasne

Places

Our flights take place throughout the year from four launch sites (Abbey of Villers-la-Ville, the Lion of Waterloo, the Place of Céroux-Mousty, Provinciedomein Huizingen and the Chateau of Gravenhof) depending on wind direction.

All take off places are ideally situated and are about 30 minutes from Brussels.

Timing

Flights are obviously weather dependant.

During the summer they take place early in the morning and evening, seven days a week. In the winter they take place during the morning and afternoon when the views are the most spectacular. Each flight lasts for an hour although it would be wise to allow three hours for the whole trip.

Once you are booked, telephone us at lunch time before your flight to confirm your booking and for final launch instructions. Please remember that we try to fly every day between April and October, weather permitting.

Light surface winds and stable air are ideal conditions for ballooning. You must contact us at lunch time before your flight to make sure conditions are suitable. If the flight has to be cancelled an alternative date will be arranged to suit you. It may take several attempts before the correct weather coincides with your booking, please be patient, it is worth the wait.