Would you like a quiet place in a rural and wooded surroundings? Then stay in a cottage in the beautiful area of the Meuse, the sparsely populated French department of the Lorraine region with an average of only 390 inhabitants per village. The Meuse department, named after the Meuse river, is marked by tributes from World War I, art from the time of Joan of Arc and masterpieces of Renaissance architecture.
The department is divided into five historic areas around its capital Verdun, known from the First World War. You can visit Romagne-sous-Montfaucon, the largest American cemetery in Europe. This beautifully maintained cemetery is full of impressive memorial remembrance monuments. Visiting guarantees an impressive experience.
For more history, visit Fort Douaumont, a well-preserved fortress from the First World War. This clearly illustrates the strong severities of fighting. During the tour you will get a glimpse of what life must have been during the war in the fort.
Clear your head afterwards by renting a kayak at the Kayak Club in Saint-Mihiel. Get carried away by the descent of the Meuse and enjoy the breath-taking surroundings. The Meuse is also very inviting for fishing enthusiasts. For example, go fishing for salmonids in the limestone valley of the river Saulx. In addition, the Aire, the Chiers and the Maas have a varied fish population, exciting for both novice and experienced fishermen.
The Regional Natural Park of Lorraine is divided between the departments of Meuse, Meurthe-et-Moselle and Moselle. This protected nature reserve is divided into two parts: the western part stretches across the Meuse and the Moselle valley, the eastern part occupies the area of Chateau-Salins to Fénétrange and Sarrebourg. From vineyards to cane fields, from museums to crafts and bird observatories to stargazers, the park is an area where you will not get bored easily.
The "Vent des Forêts" can be found In the heart of the department, where over the years more than 150 works of contemporary art have been created next to more than 45 kilometres (28 miles) of trails, for art lovers and hikers. This makes the wooded area surprisingly beautiful. The various special marked trails are accesible both on foot, on horseback or by mountain bike.
Meuse is a perfect destination to learn more about the traditional French cuisine.
The Lotharingers are in fact great lovers of the good things of life and therefore it is a Walhalla for food lovers. Each town has its own specialty. Indulge your taste buds with the shell-shaped cupcake named “Madeleine” from Commercy, the sugar beans from Verdun and enjoy the delicious currant jam made in Bar-le-Duc. This city attracts many visitors for its many churches, old houses, the ruins of a castle and the tower with its clock. The Bar-le-Duc spring water is only in name associated with the city.
During your stay in the Meuse, make sure you try the Quiche Lorraine with bacon, cream and eggs.