12 Most Chocolatey Reasons to Spend Time in Brussels
As a child my father went to Brussels for work and always came back with Marzipan chips which were a real favourite at home. I have visited Brussels on a few occasions with work. I have spent time at the European Union buildings and had some wonderful meals and discussions with colleagues who were also in nursing there. It is a diverse and interesting city, political in its roots and small enough to spend most of your time walking around on foot.
Brussles is home to the waffle (gaufres) and hot waffles with chocolate sauce are a great way to start any day.
2. Chocolate heaven
Sample the delights of this city of chocolate on a two hour guided walk. You can sample chocolates for free at some of the best shops in the city and the walking will get you thinking you are burning those unwanted calories. At the end attend a chocolate workshop where you can make your own Belgian Praline.
3. Beer lovers of the world unite
Diversity is apparent in the Belgian love of beer. Beer here is often original and best sampled in places like the Paechenellekelder which has a list of 90 beers. Visit the Estaminet Toone and let the kids watch the daily puppet show in a little Victorian puppet theatre whilst you enjoy the beer.
4. The comic book route
Home to Tintin Brussles has a long history of comic book characters and you can see them on the city walls if you walk the comic book route. You can also visit the Belgian Comics Museum.
5. Magritte Museum
Surrealist artist Rene Magritte studied in Brussels and this museum is home to the worlds largest collection of his art.
6. Royal Museum of Fine Art
Enjoy the works of Flemish artists in their home city like Van Dyck and Bruegel and wander through to the Rubens room to look at a collection of over 20 of his paintings.
7. The Grand Place
The central square of Brussels is delightful and should not be missed as it combines Baroque, Gothic and Louis XIV styles. If you visit in August every two years there is a flower carpet set up for a few days which is colourful and fun.
8. Stadsfeetzaal Shopping centre
Beautiful 19th Century architecture can be viewed from a platform underneath its glass roof before venturing out into the boutiques sheltering inside.
A monument built for the 1958 World fair this steel sphere which forms an iron crystal shape can be seen from both the outside and inside. At the top you get a birdseye view of Brussels via escalators or a lift.
10. Rue des Bouchers
This beautiful cobbled street is a great place to eat seafood outside or in and making your way through the outside tables whilst navigating waiters trying to get you to come into their restaurants is all part of the fun.
11. Bois de la Cambre
Although outside the city itself it is a shame to miss some of the woodland which surrounds Brussels. The lake is lovely and there are cafes and lawns to lounge on whilst working off some of the beer and chocolate!
12. Government buildings
Visit the European Parliament, Palais de Justice where you can get great views of the city from the viewing gallery or Berlaymont to get a taste of why Brussels is also a political city and is the headquarters for the European Union and NATO.
Did I miss anything? Please let me know in the comments below!
Featured image courtesy of Verity Borthwick via Creative Commons.