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Belgium: Villers-la-Ville, Villers Abbey

About Villers Abbey:

In 1146, the knight Gauthier de Marbais and his mother Judith invited the monks of the abbey of Clairvaux (France) to found a new abbey at Villers on their lands. A small group of 17 Cistercian monks established themselves at Villers and began work on a Gothic Abbey that would take over 100 years to complete. During this very wealthy period, the almost 400 monks in the community owned almost 24,000 acres of land, stretching as far as Antwerp.

In 1794, during The French Revolution, the Abbey was sacked and pillaged. It was then sold to a builders’ merchant, who dismantled it piece by piece.  Today, what you see are the ruins of the Abbey…..but, even though they are ruins, they are impressive and well worth a visit.

The Medicinal Herb Garden at Villers Abbey:

Opened in 2012, the Medicinal Herb Garden consists of about one hundred medicinal plants. Inspired by medieval herb gardens, this garden is utilitarian, symbolic and contemplative.  Herbs were used by the monks for a variety of maladies and illnesses….something that is somewhat back in fashion these days!

Nearby is The Saint-Bernard chapel, built during the 19th century.

Visiting Villers Abbey in Villers-la-Ville, Belgium:

Address:  Rue de l’Abbaye, 55, 1495 Villers-la-Ville. Belgium

Tel: +32 (0)71.880.980

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