The Walls of Orval

orvalwall

Wall of Orval: On the southern border of Belgium, the beautiful monastary of Orval is nestled in a small wooded valley. The name itself means “the valley of gold”. The legend goes that a crusader went off to the holy lands for many years, leaving his wife behind. One day while drinking from the valley’s well, her wedding ring dropped into the water. She was devastated, thinking that she had lost her ring forever. However, many years later, she was drinking from the well again, when a small fish surfaced, and returned her wedding ring. The next day, her husband returned. Thus, today the place surrounding the well is called the “Valley of Gold”, as one can suppose the woman’s wedding ring was made of gold.

Much of what was once the monastary has fallen into ruins, however, there is a part of the monastary that is still used and lived in by some monks. The monastary also produces a “trappist” beer (a name denominating a beer made for religious purposes), appropriately named “Orval”. In addition, they also produce a special cheese and herb liquor that you can try at the “Brasserie” near the monastary.

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