In the beautiful country of Belgium, you’ll find its capital city Brussels, booming with amazing monuments, fascinating museums and tranquil parks.
Here we’ve listed some of the most popular tourist attractions you won’t want to miss.
The Grand Place is the central square of Brussels and is surrounded by large imposing buildings, including magnificent guild houses that make for excellent photos and the stunning City Museum that’s well worth a visit. What started off as a simple market place selling meat, bread and cloth is now considered one of the most beautiful squares in Europe and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Built during the 1400s, the Town Hall is the only medieval building still standing. You’re bound to marvel at its 315-feet-tall Gothic tower and the statue of Saint Michael that sits at the bottom. The King’s House opposite was originally a wooden building used to sell bread, however, it now showcases Gothic Revival architecture and houses the City Museum that’s a must see.
This unavoidable icon exhibits a unique architectural style that represents a single iron crystal unit, magnified 165 billion times. It was constructed for the Brussels World Fair – an international event designed to display achievements of different countries – and it features nine atoms(spheres) connected by various tubes. It represents faith in science and nuclear power.
Wander through the many tubes to reach the various spheres that hold a series of events and activities, as they’re the size of large apartments. You can choose to explore the permanent exhibition on the World's Fair or look around the ever-changing temporary exhibition and see what it’s all about. The final stop along your tour should be at the top sphere, where you’ll discover a restaurant with 360-degree views of Brussels.
Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium
In the heart of Brussels, The Royal Museums of Fine Arts is made up of six museums; the two in the main building showcase Ancient and Modern Art.The adjacent Magritte Museum has so much to offer, so make sure you dedicate plenty of time to see it all.
The top floors of the main building display many beautiful pieces that’ll make you stop and stare, the largest collection focusing on Flemish paintings like Jordaen and Bruegel. You’ll also discover a whole room dedicated to the magnificent pieces by Rubens, including his Landscape with the Fall of Icarus. In the Museum of Modern Art, you’ll see vintage comic strips and many unique 19th,20th and 21st-century pieces, spread across a total of eight different floors.
Being the fifth largest church in the world and the largest Art Deco building ever means that the Koekelberg Basilica is a very popular attraction with tourists. This astounding church took nearly 70 years to build, with work starting towards the end of 1905 and not finishing till 1971.
The Basilica’s main feature is its green-coloured dome, which contrasts with the red terracotta stones that make up the rest of the church. When inside you can browse the extensive collection of sculptures and paintings in the Modern Religious Art Museum, watch the sun come through the colourful stain glass windows, and climb up 174 feet to the observation deck and take in the stunning, panoramic views over Brussels.
This 25-acre park in central Brussels provides plenty of locals and tourists with tranquillity through its extensive, green space; iconic pond and many shady trees. You can come here for an al-fresco lunch, casual walk in the sun or visit the various attractions such as the House of European History, Solvay library and Museum of Natural Sciences, which is home to the world's largest museum hall dedicated to dinosaurs.
This park is adjacent to the Paul-Henri Spaak building and is at the foot of the European Parliament so, if you’re passing by, ensure you stop off and go for a nice, relaxing walk by the stream to see ducks, geese and other small water birds. During spring cherry blossom grows, filling the air with its sweet scent and providing many picturesque photo opportunities.
If after reading this blog you’d like to book a short break to Brussels, call us on 0800 021 3237 or contact us via our website. Alternatively you can visit our Woodbridge or Ipswich travel agents and speak to a member of our team.