Welcome to Brussels


Architecture

The cityscape swings from majestic to quirky to rundown and back again. Art deco facades face off against 1960s concrete developments, and regal 19th-century mansions contrast with the shimmering glass of the EU’s Gotham City. This whole maelstrom swirls out from Brussels’ medieval core, where the Grand Place is surely one of the world’s most beautiful squares. But Brussels' greatest architectural expression came at the turn of the 19th century with art nouveau, and its master builder is Horta. While restraint characterises his exteriors, the interiors are sensual symphonies of form and colour.

Art

Sometimes it seems as if every building in the city is being converted into a contemporary art gallery, from townhouses to skating rinks to the vast canal-side Citroën garage being remodelled to showcase conceptual art. With property prices lower than Paris, many commercial galleries are choosing to shift to the city. And students and young artists are opening their doors to show work at open studio weekends and event nights. Whether you prefer iconoclastic or outsider art, Magritte or the Flemish Primitives, there really is something for every art lover in Brussels.

Food & Drink

As with many other aspects of life, the people of Brussels like to eat and drink a little differently, and there are some deeply ingrained habits: delicious frites have to be double fried, and the classic waffle comes with a snowfall of icing sugar. They even have their own biscuit: the shortcrust cinnamon speculoos. In addition to the fabled beer, which many visitors focus their trip around, Brussels boasts the half-en-half, a heady mix of white wine and champagne. In recent times there has been an increasing focus on local organic cuisine, and this heavy eating city is definitely getting healthier.

The Marolles

Brussels’ once resolutely working-class Marolles quarter has partly shed its proletarian image with a clutch of intimate restaurants and funky interior-design shops along the main streets, Rue Haute and Rue Blaes. Nonetheless, pockets of original Bruxellois character can still be found, notably around the Place du Jeu-de-Balle. At a few of the enjoyable downmarket cafés here you might overhear people speaking in the earthy Bruxellois dialect, and at least one stall still sells the traditional street food: snails. Note that, despite the name, Jeu-de-Balle (aka balle-pelotte) is no longer played here.


Top experiences in Brussels

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Brussels activities

$53.66 Cultural & Theme Tours

Ghent and Bruges Full-Day Tour from Brussels

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productPass By: Belfry and Cloth Hall (Belfort en Lakenhalle), Ghent, East Flanders ProvinceThe 91-metre-tall belfry of Ghent is one of three medieval towers that overlook the old city centre of Ghent, Belgium, the other two belonging to Saint Bavo Cathedral and Saint Nicholas' Church.Pass By: Graslei and Korenlei, Ghent, East Flanders ProvinceA quay in the historic city center of Ghent, Belgium, located on the right bank of the Leie river.Pass By: St. Bavo's Cathedral (Sint-Baafskathedraal), Ghent, East Flanders ProvinceThe Saint Bavo Cathedral an 89-meter-tall Gothic cathedral in Ghent, Belgium. It is the seat of the diocese of Ghent, is named for Saint Bavo of Ghent, and contains the well-known Ghent Altarpiece.Pass By: Saint Nicholas Church, Ghent, East Flanders ProvinceSt. Nicholas' Church is one of the oldest and most prominent landmarks in Ghent, Belgium. Begun in the early 13th century as a replacement for an earlier Romanesque church.Pass By: Gravensteen, Ghent, East Flanders ProvinceThe current castle dates to 1180 and was the residence of the Counts of Flanders until 1353. It was subsequently re-purposed as a court, prison, mint, and even as a cotton factory.Stop At: Basilica of the Holy Blood, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe Basilica of the Holy Blood is a Roman Catholic basilica in Bruges, Belgium. The church houses a venerated relic of the Holy Blood allegedly collected by Joseph of Arimathea and brought from the Holy Land by Thierry of Alsace.Duration: 10 minutesStop At: Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe Church of Our Lady in Bruges, Belgium, dates mainly from the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries. Its tower, at 115.6 metres in height, remains the tallest structure in the city and the second tallest brickwork tower in the world.Duration: 15 minutesStop At: Stadhuis, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe Bruges City Hall is one of the oldest city halls in the entire Netherlands region. It is located in Burg Square, the area of the former fortified castle in the centre of Bruges.Duration: 10 minutesStop At: Minnewater Lake, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe famous area is called the "Lake of Love" and" Lovers bridge" .It’s a romantic place to be with someone you love! An amazing location within the confines of the city. Duration: 15 minutesStop At: Burg Square, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe Burg Square is the political center of Bruges. It is a lovely place where architecture lovers can enjoy the amazing mix of beautiful buildings.Duration: 20 minutesStop At: Beguinage (Begijnhof), Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThe Princely Beguinage Ten Wijngaerde is the only preserved beguinage in the Belgian city of Bruges. There are no more Beguines living there, but since 1927 it functions as a convent for Benedictines, founded by canon Hoornaert.Duration: 10 minutesStop At: Historic Centre of Brugge, Bruges, West Flanders ProvinceThere will be time for an optional but unforgettable canal tour. Duration: 30 minutes

$79.92 Day Trips & Excursions

Brussels Beer Tasting Guided 4-Hour Tour

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Global Enterprises Tours, BrusselsMeeting PointDuration: 5 minutesPass By: St. Catherine's Church, BrusselsFishmarket of Brussels with authentic barsStop At: Place St. Gery, BrusselsLost river ZenneDuration: 5 minutes

$79.92 Day Trips & Excursions

Brussels Chocolate 4-Hour Walking Tour with Workshop, Tastings

Brussels Chocolate Walking Tour and Workshop allows you to learn how to make the real Belgian pralines yourself through a fun workshop. Orangettes, pralines, Easter eggs... The chocolates are made with real cream or alcoholic filling, they do not keep well, but then, you weren't planning on keeping them for long anyway, were you? You will love this original and extremely delicious walking tour that looks at the authentic Brussels like no other does. You will also walk through the historic old town, see the major sights like Manneken Pis, Grand'Place, Royal Galleries but also the hidden treasures that only the locals know how to find. Also a lot of inside information about where to eat, museums, and other activities.

$105.04 Cultural & Theme Tours

Flanders World War I Battlefields Tour from Brussels

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: In Flanders Fields Museum, Ieper (Ypres), West Flanders ProvinceThe In Flanders' Fields Museum is a museum in Ypres, Belgium, dedicated to the study of the First World War. It occupies the second floor of the Cloth Hall on the market square in the city centre. The building was largely destroyed by artillery during the war, but was afterwards reconstructed.Duration: 1 hour 30 minutesPass By: Tyne Cot Cemetery, Zonnebeke, West Flanders ProvinceZonnebeke is a municipality located in the Belgian province of West Flanders. The municipality comprises the villages of Beselare, Gheluvelt, Passendale, Zandvoorde and Zonnebeke proper. Pass By: Vladslo German War Cemetery, Diksmuide, West Flanders Provinceladslo German war cemetery is about three kilometres north east of Vladslo, near Diksmuide, Belgium. Established during World War I, the cemetery holds 3,233 wartime burials.Pass By: Hill 60, Ieper (Ypres), West Flanders ProvinceHill 60 is a World War I battlefield memorial site and park in the Zwarteleen area of Zillebeke south of Ypres, Belgium.Stop At: Essex Farm Cemetery, Ieper (Ypres), West Flanders ProvinceThis was the dressing station where Dr. John McCrae wrote the famous poem "in Flanders Fields". Duration: 15 minutesStop At: Passchendaele Prints & Battlefield Tours, Ieper (Ypres), West Flanders ProvinceNear the town of Ieper in Belgium is Passchendaele and Tyne Cot Cemetery, the largest Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery in the world. It is now the resting place of more than 11,900 servicemen of the British Empire from the First World War. Duration: 30 minutesStop At: Last Post ceremony, Ieper (Ypres), West Flanders ProvinceA daily tribute to all commonwealth soldiers and officers that were missing after battle. Duration: 30 minutes

$28.54 Tours & Sightseeing

Brussels Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Enjoy a hop-on hop-off tour in the heart of Europe and marvel at the best of Brussels from an open-top double-decker bus, complete with informative commentary. Hop on and off the bus at any stop, as many times as you like, to see the sights that interest you on the blue and red route. With buses departing every 30 minutes and tickets valid for 24 hours or 48 hours after first use, this is the perfect way to explore Belgium's capital.See the Itinerary section below for a list of all stops.

$67.36 Day Trips & Excursions

Luxembourg Full-Day Tour from Brussels

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Dinant Aventure, Dinant, The Ardennes, Wallonia12,000 inhabitants located along the Meuse with its citadel of 408 steps and 100 million over the Meuse.Dinant gave its name to the brassware: copper objects.Specialty: biscuits or biscuits with honey.Here is the birthplace of Adolphe Sax (1814) inventor of the saxophone. It has the Collegiate Church of Our Lady (15th century).Duration: 1 hour 30 minutesStop At: Maison de Monsieur Sax, Dinant, The Ardennes, WalloniaHistorical museum of Adolphe Sax and his famous invention.Duration: 30 minutesStop At: Notre Dame Cathedral (Cathedrale Notre Dame), Luxembourg CityFormer Jesuit church of the 17th century Baroque and Renaissance style with Gothic elements.To the left of the nave, a forum dedicated to the Grand Ducal family.The College of Jesuits adjacent to the cathedral became National Library.Duration: 30 minutesPass By: Palace of the Grand Dukes (Palais Grand-Ducal), Luxembourg CityOld part of Renaissance (1572), middle part (1741) of Baroque and Renaissance styles and right the Chamber of Deputies (1858).Pass By: Auchan Kirchberg, Luxembourg CityThe Grand Duchess Charlotte Bridge in red painted steel (1966) crosses the Alzette.Left the Municipal Theater (1964) and right Monument Schuman (Father of Europe).Pass By: Court of Justice of the European Union, Luxembourg CityThe European Center Kirchberg 1966 with its 23 floors is the seat of the European Parliament.The Schuman Center headquarters of the Council of Ministers.Stop At: Neumunster, Luxembourg CityNeumünster Abbey is a public meeting place and cultural centre, located in the Grund district of Luxembourg City in southern Luxembourg. After the original Benedictine abbey on the Altmünster Plateau had been destroyed in 1542, the monks built a new abbey or "Neumünster" in 1606 in the Grund.Duration: 20 minutes