Places to visit | Local area map | rail travel


Most of the countryside round Avesnes - the "Avenois"- is being developed as a protected Regional Nature Park. Known as the "Little Switzerland of the North", it has several popular country park areas with leisure facilities - including the Val Joly outdoor sport and nature park.

1. Many of the buildings in the main streets of this small country town are stone, like the belfry
2. The Tour de France cycle race flashed through the town on its progress around France in 1999: see 'Cycling'

The Trélon-Fourmies Eco-museums
Before the industrial revolution, the forests of the Avenois hummed with craft-based industries busily exploiting its wood, water-power, and minerals as raw materials. Factories powered by steam engines developed in the 19th century, using coal from the nearby coal basin.

Twentieth century changes drove these small-scale old industries into closure, but a few of their remains are preserved - over the 9 sites of the Trélon-Fourmies Eco-museums.

Here crafts that have almost died out are recreated: glass-blowing, textile workers, wood carvers.....

This area of lush pastures has many dairy farms.

They make distinctive cheeses - Maroilles is famous, also the cone-shaped red cheeses of Avesnes.

The distinctive "boul d'Avesnes" - the local cheese that is coated in paprika.

Web links and more information

Local area map:

Click on places for more information

Link to the Tourist Board website for:
Accommodation: hotels, B&Bs, gites, campsites
Discovery: list of places to visit
Diary of events
Rambles in the area - maps & notes

Click for TOURIST BOARD information
at [in English]

Places to visit
Boat trips on the river Sambre - at Maubeuge
Brasserie Au Baron - small traditional brewery near Bavay
Fourmies-Trélon Ecomusée - Museum of old craft industries at 9 sites
Glass Museum, Sars-Poteries
Lac du Val Joly - outdoor sporting and leisure area, natural park
Roman Forum & Archaeological Site - Bavay

Avenois Regional Nature Park - outdoor sporting and leisure area, natural park (see map right).

Background Information:
Industrial Revolution

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QUICK TOUR round the Avenois region, starting with Fourmies-Trélon Ecomusée...



Cambrai Last updated 13th February 2001 © Copyright Invicta Media 1999-2001