Celebrate Peace in these Hauts-de-France Gardens

Inspiration

Northern FranceRemembrance TourismNature and Outdoor Activities

Le Jardin du Troisième Train, préambule végétal à la Clairière de l'Armistice.
© M. Blume/G. Brusset/F. Liggieri - Le Jardin du Troisième Train, préambule végétal à la Clairière de l'Armistice.

Reading time: 0 minPublished on 17 October 2023, updated on 16 April 2024

On the former front lines of WWI in the Hauts-de-France region, resilience is best recognized through nature in these gardens of peace. These artful landscapes located near the region’s main commemorative sites represent all the nations involved in the conflict.

Lights and Translucence

Elise et Martin Hennebicque
© Elise et Martin Hennebicque

Located below Notre-Dame-de-Lorette hill, this garden, inspired by orchards and pastures, has been baptized "Promenade en sous-bois, lumières et transparence," or “a walk in the undergrowth, lights and translucence." Stop here before or after visiting the memorial to take in the space’s soft, intimate atmosphere, perfect for reflection and remembrance.

G. Brusset/M. Blume/F. Liggieri
© G. Brusset/M. Blume/F. Liggieri

The Garden of the Third Train, a Franco-German garden located in Compiègne, leads visitors from the car park to the Armistice clearing. Walkways cross the underbrush, poetically evoking the trenches of WWI.

The Bagpipe

Anna Rhodes/Melissa Orr
© Anna Rhodes/Melissa Orr

We can almost hear the bagpipes playing in this garden, which pays tribute to the musicians who galvanized the troops on the front lines of the Scottish battalions. Inspired by the traditional instrument and the Scottish moors, "Piper’s Peace" is covered in blue thistle, symbolic of the country, and black oak trees, the raw material used for making bagpipes.

Collectif Escargo
© Collectif Escargo

In Vimy, near the famous memorial to the Canadian soldiers who fell on French soil, "Drapeau" garden represents the white flag. Plenty of white flowers and Shadbush trees with light grey trunks symbolize Canada’s boreal forests and snowy landscapes.

Initials

Dan Bowyer et Andrew Fischer Tomlin
© Dan Bowyer et Andrew Fischer Tomlin

This garden is an extension of a key Franco-British memorial in Thiepval, paying homage to the fallen soldiers of the Battle of the Somme. The initials of these 442,000 men are engraved on a 130-foot wooden bench in the undergrowth, a symbol of the ties between the past, present, and future.

Rangimarie

Xanthe White
© Xanthe White

This park, located in Le Quesnoy, is best visited at sunrise or sunset, the ideal time to experience "rangimarie", a Maori expression meaning peace. Rangimarie was the inspiration for New Zealand’s landscape artist, Xanthe White, who designed this calm, serene promenade. It’s located near the New Zealand memorial, which honors the soldiers who liberated the city on November 4, 1918.

L. Bartolazzi/L. Catalano/C. Clementini
© L. Bartolazzi/L. Catalano/C. Clementini

In Craonne, on the Chemin des Dames, garden "592" pays tribute to the Italian soldiers who disappeared during combat, their battalions symbolized by stakes planted amongst the trees. This installation comes into color in the springtime, when flowers are in full bloom.

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