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A unique nature experience with Ardennes-étape and S.I. Champlon Tenneville
1 week-end of relaxation
As we close the door of our Ardennes-étape holiday home behind us on a Friday afternoon, a deep calm descends upon us. The view of the open countryside of Saint-Hubert is simply breathtaking. In this charming chalet, built entirely of wood and clay in the authentic Ardennes tradition, the memory of the hectic bustle of the big city, which we left behind barely two hours ago, evaporates…
Back to nature
We want our party to be completely immersed in nature for the weekend. And we can’t think of a better way to do this than forest bathing. “What on earth is forest bathing?” we hear you thinking. In the words of S.I. Champlon Tenneville, it’s an “invigorating experience for all your senses in a peaceful setting, where you can let go of everything for a moment to become one with nature again”.
We discovered the organiser of our forest bathing experience on the Ardennes-étape website, on which we booked our holiday home. By the way, we highly recommend this super handy website! You will find more than 2,000 holiday homes to rent in the Ardennes. Also good to know: if, like us, you book your holiday home via the website, you can also enjoy great benefits with the numerous partners who offer a very wide range of interesting activities and services.
S.I. Champlon Tenneville offers a variety of year-round forest bathing experiences at Tenneville. We set out with our expert eco-guide Delphine. She is spontaneous and cheerful as she leads us through the forests of Tenneville on a walk that fully immerses us in all the sounds of nature.
A magical start
“Have you ever stopped to think about how much time you actually spend looking at your feet when you’re out on a walk?” Delphine proceeds. Our guide lets us become fully aware of the way we walk. She points out how simple but important movements promote our connection with the environment. We do some short exercises and discover pure peace, all our stress disappearing like snow in the sun.
Delphine put together a walk in advance, and it’s completely tailored to our party so that everyone felt very comfortable. “I have shorter, easier walks for people who aren’t used to doing this kind of thing,” she tells us. “But I will take groups of experienced hikers on wilder hikes. A hike takes between 1.5 and 3 hours on average.” After a brief description of the region, we start our walk in the beautiful forest, bathed in blissful peace, full of expectations.
We regularly stop along the way, and Delphine takes us through some surprising exercises: blind walking, breathing exercises, exercises where we learn to feel the energy of the elements around us, and that show us the power of listening to our surroundings. These are moments during which our stress levels drop noticeably each time.
After each exercise, Delphine asks someone to share how they experience the elements with the group. This immediately ensures that we not only deepen our connection with nature, it also immediately strengthens our bond with each other. It will be an unforgettable experience.
More than 2,500 hikes in the Ardennes
Later on that evening, as we all sit around the bar by the fireplace in our cosy chalet, talking for hours about the unique moments we experienced during our forest bathing trip. And we immediately make plans to continue today’s experience with a brisk walk the next day. Our choice is a walk that practically goes right by the front door of our holiday home.
After a blissful night’s sleep and a cosy breakfast in the comfortable living room, we put on our hiking boots for the second day. We downloaded today’s trek on the SityTrail app. Like everyone who books a holiday home through Ardennes-étape, in addition to the other practical advantages and discounts, we received free access to the premium version of this hiking app for a month. This conveniently allowed us to choose from over 2,500 hikes in the Ardennes on our smartphone!