HISTORIC SITE AND MONUMENT
When the Grand-Place is not populated by drunken individuals, you can make out a ring of blue stones in its paving. Look at it from a distance or you may miss it! Measuring 12 metres in diameter, it’s better to see the big picture. It’s another symbol for Mons, that of the union of the 19 communes which make up the city.
A few steps from the Tourist Office, you’ll notice the fountain of the Grand-Place. Be careful! Like a geyser, we don’t always know when the water will shoot up from the ground! As the saying goes, don’t trust still waters! When the weather is nice, the kids will have a blast, crisscrossing the fountain under the mirthful (or irritated) gaze of their parents.
Among the long succession of facades (all dissimilar!) around the Grand-Place, the Town Hall’s will immediately catch your eye. Adorned with a Baroque bell-tower, it opens the way to a path that will lead you ... Well, go and explore it! If I can say one thing, it’s crazy how much is right underneath our feet and we didn’t know existed. Now it’s time to get your cameras out for a panoramic shot of the Grand-Place, a picture of the Town Hall, a zoom-in on the mascot of Mons, the little monkey, and ... Doesn’t this look like a dragon? Indeed! This outdoor ramp, a work by Garouste, bears witness to the Doudou and the traditional fight between Saint Georges and the beast.
After all, it’s thirsty work being an artist, especially in the sun (and yes, the sun does occasionally make an appearance in Mons). You’ll be spoiled for choice among the terraces spilling out in every direction. You’ve got so many options from the range of different chains. All that remains is to place your order, and if you’re unsure, it will be a good excuse to come back again.
But hold your horses! Before gracing your presence at the Grand-Place, take a detour to the official Mons 2015 store. There’s no better place to find a small souvenir bearing the city’s image.
Are you aware of the Town Hall’s special feature? Besides its secret passages and the sculptures on its facade? Well, would you believe that it should have had a second floor, but it couldn’t be built for financial reasons at the time. The town hall is still impressive and still dominates the neighbouring buildings. And if you go inside, you’ll be surprised by the charm of the different rooms and lounges it houses.