23 June 2012

11 March, sur la batte

Liège is the home of the largest weekend street market in Europe!  It spans approximately 3 kilometres right along the river of Liège, la Meuse, on the side of the historic centre, from Place Léonard all the way to Quai sur Meuse.  I was determined to go check it out, so I had Daniel Pollain (my host dad at the time) drop me off!  It's every sunday morning from as early as you can get there to about 1 or 2 in the afternoon.  Luckily, the day I went, it was quite sunny, and it almost gives it the air of being a mediterranean wharf-market.  Seagulls and all.  Well, pigeons anyway.

The top of the market, near place Léonard.  the name "La Batte" is the Wallon word for quay, or wharf, Wallon being the regional dialect of Wallonia (I think I explained in the previous post).

One can get a sense of the length here.  I've zoomed in, and the market continues around that corner and goes under 2 bridges before it's over

Place Léonard, towards the Bridge Léonard

I took a little walk up behind Place Léonard, found the train tracks, and a tiny little street on the hill!
Discovery about the hills behind Liège:  Because of all the mining in Liège in the late 1800s and early 1900s, there was a lot of excess earth that they piled up and created "artificial hills."  That is to say, for the most part, the hills in the area are more or less man-made.

Down in the market.  Clothes, cheap designed clothes, perfumes, fabric,  food, electronics, etc.

Chickens!  and bunnies and geese too

The rotisserie chicken stands (horribly placed right next to the chicken coops)

Pedestrians can cross any bridge in Liège, but this is a uniquely foot-traffic bridge connecting the middle island to the historic district.

At the Passerelle, looking towards the batte.  The batte goes from this bridge to the next bridge, and again as far.

Coeur historique! (Historic centre)  This sign post is in Place Léopold
Place Léopold is on the left, down the street in front is eventually the University, and then the river

Pigeons. I told you so.  They're everywhere.  In place St-Lambert

From the bus, I thought this was cute.  We can't see very well, but on a bike there center-right, a boy is riding with a girl balancing just behind him on the seat.

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