The Stilt Walkers of Namur

600 years of stilt jousts in Namur (Belgium)

Since 1411, two stilt walkers’ teams of Namur have confronted one another relentlessly. On the one side, the ‘Mélans’ who carry yellow and black stilts  and represent the old city. On the other, the ‘Avresses’, climbed on red and white stilts, representing the new town and the suburbs. Their spectacular jousts have pleased Emperors and Kings. Charles the Fifth, Louis XIV, Peter the Great from Russia, Napoleon… all of them attended a stilt walkers’ fight given by the Stilt walkers of Namur. Nowadays, the stilt walkers still joust on stilts and perpetuate this living heritage which is the pride of Namur.

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Jousts on stilts in Namur, Belgium ©Skuds - Simon Fusillier

Discover

A living heritage and a rich history. Since 1411 and until the present day, jousting on stilts has made the heart of Namur beat faster. Discover the Namur stilts jousts and their history.

Young stilt walker in Namur, Belgium ©Skuds - Simon Fusillier

Becoming a stilt walker




This page only exists in French.

Gros plan sur sur les échasses de joute, ©Dominique Pire

Our stilts in detail


The Namur stilts model has evolved over the centuries to adapt to jousting. More about our jousting stilts.

La toute grande foule pour la joute de l’échasse d’or, ©André Dubuisson

The Golden Stilt

The Joust for the Golden Stilt takes place on the third Sunday of September during the Wallonia festivities. This joust is the most prestigious and popular of all. More about the Golden Stilt.

Young ladies training on stilts in Namur

Women's stilt jousts




This page only exists in French.

Stilt walkers fight in Namur, Belgium ©Skuds – Simon Fusillier

Unesco

The Namur stilt jousts are candidates to be on the list of UNESCO cultural heritage.

This page only exists in French.

Photo gallery