Scourmont Abbey

Chimay, Belgium

Scourmont Abbey is a Trappist monastery famous for its spiritual life, and the Chimay Brewery which it runs, one of the few Trappist breweries.

In 1844, Jean-Baptiste Jourdain, the priest of Virelles, suggested that the wild plateau of Scourmont was a suitable place for a monastery. However, all previous attempts to cultivate the barren plateau had failed. Fr. Jourdain obtained support for the proposed foundation from Prince Joseph II de Chimay, the abbot of Westmalle Abbey and Westvleteren Abbey. Six years later, on 25 July 1850, a small group of monks from Westvleteren settled on Scourmont and founded a priory.

A lot of hard work was required to transform the barren soil of Scourmont into fertile farmland. A farm was created around the monastery, as well as a cheese-making factory and a brewery. On 24 February 1871, Pope Pius IX granted the priory the status of abbey and it was inaugurated on 7 July 1871. The present church of the abbey dates from 1950.

The famous beers and cheeses of Scourmont Abbey are marketed under the trade name of Chimay, after the village where the abbey is located.



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Founded: 1850
Category: Religious sites in Belgium


4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Bruno Vanderstocken (2 years ago)
Beautiful and quiet monastery. Check out the sequoia in the middle of the abbey, and the church on your left when you enter.
Freddy Vandriessche (2 years ago)
This is the abbey where the famous Chimay Trappist beer is brewed. Trappist beers must be brewed in the abbey without exception. Only a few parking places exist, but usually one finds a spot. The area is very green and quiet, ideal for contemplation, combining tamed nature with plain nature. Walkers will find a few paths around the abbey, but the abbey too is publicly accessible. You'll find a huge entrance gate, with clean public bathrooms. Through this gate, one can enter the inside gardens, the church entrance is on your left. On your right, you can walk to the cemetary of the abbey. Visiting the area takes 30-45min. Like many abbeys unfortunately, the inhabitants do not focus on tourism or any initiative to better welcome, inform or guide anyone around. I would be prepared to pay for a visit, guidance and tasting, if any such experience existed. This place must be ideal for hard working and contemplating monks, while for visitors, they are completely left alone figuring out it's rather interesting history!
Bartek B (3 years ago)
Nice to be in the place where Chimay beer was born. Unfortunately due to covid all except Chapel (quite usual) is closed
Rock Akiki (3 years ago)
It is a beautiful monastery located in the countryside near chamay, the reception people were so respectful and helpful. Everything was so clean: the church, the cemetery,... The garden is well maintained and everything looks great. It is a really nice place to visit?✝️
michael alchaer (3 years ago)
Very nice place to breathe fresh air and destress
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The Church of the Holy Cross served the monastery until 1538, when it was abandoned for a hundred years as the Franciscan friary was disbanded in the Swedish Reformation. The church was re-established as a Lutheran church in 1640, when the nearby Church of the Holy Trinity was destroyed by fire.

The choir of the two-aisle grey granite church features medieval murals and frescoes. The white steeple of the church was built in 1816 and has served as a landmark for seafarers.