You loved Latin lessons and want to live a crazy dolce vita. Italian gastronomy is your thing, and you have been known to cry at the sight of a beautiful earthenware dinner service. Well then, minga tè, La Louvière is just perfect for you.
La Louvière is a charming Walloon town 50 km from Brussels, in the province of Hainaut. It has a rich heritage resulting from its industrial past (earthenware, coal and river transport). The result of this is two UNESCO world heritage sites: the historic Canal du Centre with its boat lifts and the mining site of Bois-du-Luc.
As these industries needed a large labour force, the town took in a large Italian immigrant community. The result: a delicious dialect, a mix of Walloon and Sicilian slang. If you hear “Minga tè”, don’t take offence. It is an interjection used in all kinds of circumstances to express astonishment or consternation. However, if you hear “mets tes scarpes, on va faire un djîre!” that means you are being invited to put your shoes on to go for a walk.
…The town of the Wolves! Yes, that is indeed the La Louvière emblem. Legend has it that the animal suckled a child in the region. This legend – and its statue at the centre of a little roundabout, is a perfect replica of the Capitoline Wolf (only without Romulus and Remus).
And just like Rome, La Louvière is also situated at the centre of an international crossroads, in particular thanks to the E19 (Amsterdam-Antwerp-Brussels-Paris) and the E42 (Lille-Charleroi-Liège-Frankfurt-am-Main). Easy for local travel, trips away, in short for life.
Beneath its slightly austere appearance, the town has everything you need to prosper in your daily life. Organic food, parks, cute little boutiques, department stores, museums, Cowork Factory, bars and restaurants… But above all it owes its reputation to its brilliant folklore.
At Mid-Lent, you will daydream to the sound of beating drums and the pounding of Gilles clogs. This is the Laetare carnival, three days of intense fun celebrated by a warm population who will be only too glad to bring you into the dance.
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