The architecture of this city alone is enough reason to visit. Every street and corner is packed with beautiful buildings; all perfect photo opportunities. This is why you should go to Brussels.
It is possible to do a lot on the list below all in one day, but it all depends on how much time you want to spend here. Sometimes it is nice to book an extra day, just so you don’t feel as if you’re in a hurry the whole time. (Oh and if you want to book accommodation – the easy links at the top of this page will help you get the best price on everything.)
First of all you have to go to The Place. Yes, it is “the place” to be. LOL. This beautiful cobblestone square is also home to the 15th century city hall and museum. You have to stop at the museum to see the tapestries and art on display.
And speaking of tapestries: During the month of August the city square has a huge flower carpet display, made of real flowers. This is a spectacular sight and definitely a huge Instagram attraction.
You simply cannot miss the gigantic Atonium, which is a 102 m tall sparkling silver monument in the shape of a “unit cell of an α-iron (ferrite) crystal magnified 165 billion times”. It is made up off 9 silver “spheres” and you can visit 5 of them.
The Atomium’s highest sphere is home to the Atomium Restaurant , where you can have dinner with beautiful views of Brussels.
The Jubel Park, The Le Botanique gardens and the Royal Palace are also beautiful stops you can make along the way.
The Royal Palace of Brussels is accessible to the public. There is a tradition in which, every summer, the Royal Palace opens its doors to the public. From 23 July to 25 August, the palace can be visited free of charge, except on Mondays. (Always check their website – link above – for updated information and timelines before you go.)
Take a bus tour through the city. This is always the best way to see any city while getting the inside info and tourist information. Information you often cannot find on the internet. The city also has a hop-on-hop-off buss with free audio guides. This is a convenient option should you wish to explore at your own pace. (You can easily book tours online from the link at the top of the page.)
The subway is a safe option for transport in the city: Clean and efficient.
In my opinion it would definitely be August as you will then have the opportunity to experience both the flower carpet as well as the Royal Palace.
While in Belgium you have to do a chocolate tasting. After all Belgium is famous for its chocolate.
In the city you will find houses all painted with scenes from comic books. There is even a Comic Arts Museum: The Belgian Comic Strip Center.
One of the “biggest tourist attractions” as advertised by many, is actually not a big attraction and simply a statue of a little naked boy…which is apparently sometimes dressed… This is definitely not something we would recommend as a “must see”, as it was a bit disappointing to say the least. (That is after you’ve been told that you simply must see this. Hmmmm no, not so wow.)
However the story behind this 61 cm bronze statue is that it plays a huge part in the city’s calendar. The people of Brussels even have outfits for him for every occasion, like Santa Clause during Christmas time. So, I guess if you want to see everything that is dear to Brussels, then you need to stop here as well. There is also a girl and a dog statue doing the same thing, should you wish to look for them.
If you’re looking for a stylish and exclusive shopping experience, you need to visit the Royal Gallery of Saint Hubert.
Obviously this is also the place to have that famous Instagram selfie photo taken.
Maison Antoine might have a very long line of people waiting for food, but you just have to stop here.
The Waffle Factory is a must stop for an authentic Brussels waffle. You can choose from almost any topping you can think of.
You simply must do a Beer Tasting in Belgium (See tours below)
We always recommend stopping at the local market, for some fresh fruit and/or veg and more. This is the perfect place to experience any city or town’s local cuisine. Often it is also the place to shop for affordable food options.
The Midi market is open every Sunday from 6am to 2pm. Parking is not always available so it will be best to use public transport. You can easily reach it by tram, bus or train. With more than 400 vendors, you will find almost anything here, not just food. It is one of Europe’s biggest markets.