12 Must-Do Experiences in Brussels
Collected by Alison Cornford-Matheson, AFAR Local Expert
Its cafe culture, its Art Nouveau architecture and comic-book street art, plus nine more unforgettable experiences.
Sint-Katelijneplein 50, 1000 Brussel, Belgium
One of my favorite European habits that I can never get enough of is the café culture. It is the first day this spring where it is warm enough to sit outside, and every café table is filled. There must be some unwritten rule that says if it is...
Avenue Palmerston 4, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Belgium is famous for its Art Nouveau architecture from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. While many architects were experimenting with this new style, Victor Horta is Brussels' undisputed father of Art Nouveau. Many of his stunning...
1000 Brussels, Belgium
For a great shopping experience, provided that you have a wallet full of Euros, is the Sablon area of Brussels. Other than the art galleries and cafes and restaurants, you can catch the brocante, or flea market, in the square. The photo is of a...
Brussels has a vibrant art scene with hundreds of small galleries scattered throughout the city. It can be hard to know where to begin and can feel intimidating if you aren't an art expert. Enter Brussels Art Walks—guided tours of several of the...
Rue de France 40, 1060 Bruxelles, Belgium
Sunday Market at Gare du Midi is a must. It is a nice stroll through the different neighborhoods when coming out of the city centre. I enjoyed seeing locals pulling their market carts behind them, the concentration of market carts grew when I was...
Rue des Sables 20, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Belgian comics hold a special place in the history of art and writing, and Brussels showcases this distinct history beautifully. Peyo's Smurfs still hit the silver screen, and perhaps the best known of the Belgian comics artists would be the...
Place Royale 7, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Despite being a modern capital city, Brussels is still very much in touch which its historic past. Festivals, parades, architecture and traditions all hint at times gone by. One fascinating tradition is still active in Brussels and you can see it...
Place des Palais 7, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Place Royal is a busy spot in Brussels. Tourists queue up for the many museums, office-workers bustle back and forth from their cubicles, cars zip around the roundabout and, trams rumble through the middle. All the while, few know that beneath the...
Rue Royale 2, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
When it comes to guided tours, you often get what you pay for. Luckily, this is not the case with the Brussels Greeters. This talented, passionate group of volunteers is ready to show you every nook and cranny of the city, absolutely free. The...
Rue Vandenbussche 54, 1030 Bruxelles, Belgium
Brussels has plenty of green spaces to choose from. One of my favourites is in a neighbourhood often overlooked by tourists, but is well worth a visit. Parc Josaphat, in the commune of Schaerbeek, is 20 hectares of green parkland, filled with...
Rue Gheude 56, 1070 Anderlecht, Belgium
No trip to Belgium is complete without experiencing the Belgian beer culture. The best place in Brussels to take a look at beer history is the Cantillon Brewery. Even as a non beer drinker, it’s a fascinating place to visit. One of the things that...
Rue au Beurre 46, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Brussels’ Grand Place is home to many festivals of all different themes: flowers, beer, international cultures, music, and seasonal holidays. But one festival, the Ommegang, full of colour and pageantry, has been taking place here since 1549. The...