A few days ago, we woke up to the news about the Brussels terrorist attack. It was kind of unsettling to know that exactly a month ago, we were there in that same airport. Trying to save a night’s worth of accommodation. Sure, it was very tragic but I hope this doesn’t discourage travelers from visiting Brussels ever. Maybe now’s not the best time but once terrorist threats are out of the picture, Brussels will surely remain as charming as it was when we visited the city for five days last February.
Belgium’s capital is not that big of a city so a two-day itinerary is enough to experience the essentials. Here’s my list (in no particular order) of the best sights and delights beyond the beer, waffles, and chocolates.
1. Grand Place / Grote Markt.
One of the most beautiful squares I’ve seen. Huge plaza surrounded by an incredible display of architecture. A bit too lavish for my taste but pretty whoa-inducing.
The smell of fresh waffles float around the streets you could practically taste them. Even the classic ones, without those over the top strawberry/nutella/heavy whip cream frills, were divine.
3. Galerie St. Hubert
Luxury shopping arcade with local high-end shops and not the Champs-Elysées-international-brands type. A must-see for the fancy window displays of shops from jewelry to chocolates and vintage collections.
We visited the Choco-Story museum for a demonstration of artisan praline making (with unlimited tasting of various chocolate flavors).
5. Delirium Bar
We couldn’t leave Brussels without making a pitstop at the Guinness World record holder of most varieties of beers.
6. Quirky sculptures and murals
Lots of comic-book inspired murals and quirky sculptures that add a bit more color to the city.
Very quirky and geeky design for a museum. Looks very cool from outside but we didn’t bother to go inside. We had to take selfies in the rain though, with the Atomium in the background, as per special request of my boyfriend’s mom. Lol.
I find these tall, skinny houses adorable.
9. Manneken-pis / Jeanneke Pis
Other quirky landmarks in Brussels – tiny statues of kids pissing in public spaces.
10. Le Mont des Arts
Easily my favorite spot in Brussels. We had a lovely walk from the Royal Palace, past the Musical Instruments Museum and down to the viewing platform of Mont des Arts. The view was simply stunning especially at sunset.