How to get there

Rue de la Gare 28,

5670 Viroinval


This museum, which is located inside a former power station, presents regional archaeology in a fun and varied manner. And yes, that is possible. The ground floor is home to display cases with pottery, bone fragments and gold coins. Upstairs, you’ll find antiquities. Outside, you can experience the lifestyle of those who came before us.


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Discover prehistory in Treignes (Viroinval)

Let’s get things straight: this refers to the Neanderthal man all the way to the end of the Gallo-Roman era in the Entre-Sambre-et-Meuse region. The visit begins with an exploration of artefacts that have been found in the region. It’s pretty wild to look at these display cases and imagine what happened in this region 300,000 years ago.

You can also see a Neanderthal tooth that was found in Couvin. It dates from around 46,000 years ago. You can also admire bronze and iron jewellery. There are also artefacts, like pots, that were found in Gallo-Roman villas a few kilometres from the museum.

Making archaeology accessible to kids

It isn’t always easy to imagine such a distant past. This speaks to the ingenuity of the chronological frieze about the evolution of man. You can see the differently shaped skulls and the weapons that they used, depending on the technology at the time. The frieze is very clearly illustrated, even for children.

For very young visitors, there is also an area for drawing and playing that is based around the antiquity. These include, in particular, tangrams of animals from the era, as well as game boards with pawns that are identical to those that were played at the time. This is an opportunity to sit down with your kids and discuss what you saw together while having fun.

A guided tour and entertainment in the park

The museum offers guided tours. The tour, which is sometimes led by the museum’s co-founder, Pierre Cattelain, really immerses you in history. The advantage of the guide is that they help you to locate the key artefacts and explain their importance for non-archaeologists.

Another advantage of this museum: the practical activities and workshops. A host helps you discover how to light a fire without a match. Or how to shoot a bow and arrow. You can even try out a lance thrower.

Several workshops are organised too. You can learn about weaving, basket-making or prehistoric music.

The activities are free and organised in accordance with a schedule, which can be found on their website.

A temporary exhibition, a prehistoric park and archaeological sites

The museum also offers carefully curated temporary exhibitions.

Another highly visual and very enjoyable visit: the park. The prehistoric park is located behind the museum and has ‘evocations’ of dwellings. There is too little information to say whether these dwellings are accurate or not, which is why these are ‘evocations’ and not recreations. That said, you’ll appreciate the ingenuity of these six outdoor constructions from the period of hunter-gatherers.

Entry to the museum also includes a visit to life-size Gallo-Roman sites: the villa near the museum (1.5 kilometres away), the Vireux fortification (5 kilometres away) and the sanctuary in Matagne-la-Grande.

Take a look at the events calendar before making your plans.

What workshop is calling out to you?

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