Backpacking In Brussels

Brussels Cityscape from Monts des Arts, Belgium

As the fascinating capital of Belgium, and the administrative capital of the EU, Brussels is a wonderful city to explore. It is historic yet contemporary, beautiful, friendly and full of exciting adventures. It is easy to see why Brussels is one of the most majestic cities in Europe.

What to Do

The first stop on any visitors list of places to see and things to do in Brussels has to be Grand Place Square. One of the world’s most unforgettable squares, Grand Place is full of life. There are cafes, street performances, and flower markets on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings. For visitors who love history, the Musée du Cinquantenaire is a must-see. It’s rich collection contains artifacts ranging from ancient Egyptian sarcophagi and Meso-American masks to icons and wooden bicycles. Another great museum is Old English Building, a museum dedicated to the celebration of music in all forms and is home to more than 2,000 historic instruments. Art lovers have to check out Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts and Musée Magritte. Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts incorporates the Musée d’Art Ancien (ancient art); the Musée d’Art Moderne (modern art), while Musée Magritte holds the world’s largest collection of the surrealist pioneer’s paintings and drawings. The large, flamboyantly Gothic church, Église Notre-Dame du Sablon, draws the eyes of visitors everywhere. If you’re looking for a nice park to relax in, The Parc de Laeken hosts a multitude of magnolia and chestnut trees as well as Léopold I’s statue, erected in 1880.

What to Eat

The citizens of Brussels are known for their love of eating. There is no shortage of restaurants, cafes, and bars in the city for locals and tourists to satisfy their taste buds. You will find everything from French and Belgian food to Asian and Mediterranean cuisine. Here are just some of the many top-rated and delicious places to eat in Brussels:

  • L’Ogenblik
  • Soul Food
  • Arcadi
  • MiTo
  • Takumi
  • Sea Grill
  • La Fabrique

Where to Shop

The top-rated flea market, Place du Jeu-de-Balle Flea Market, was established in 1919 and has been the quintessential haggling experience in Brussels since. If you want the best bargain, head out there in the early morning during the middle of the week. One of the best arts and crafts stores is Belge une fois, a concept store that sells artifacts, accessories, light fixtures, postcard, large photography prints, and everything in between. The top choice for vintage finds would have to be the elegant shop Gabriele. Here you can find original clothes from the ‘20s to the ‘80s, cocktail dresses, Chinese accessories and shawls, and hats.  Place du Châtelain Market is a foodie’s heaven. Delicious food stalls full of fresh fruit and vegetables, cheese, berries, mushrooms, a wine bar, cake stalls, Turkish bread, charcuterie, and a Middle Eastern food van.

Where to Stay

There is a variety of choices for visitors to choose from when they visit Brussels. There are hostels for people who are budget-watching, bed and breakfasts for those who want a quaint and homey stay, and high-end hotels for those looking for a relaxing and glamourous time. Here is a list of the best places to stay in Brussels:

  • Chambres en Ville
  • Maison Noble
  • Chambres d’Hôtes du Vaudeville
  • Hôtel Métropole
  • The Captaincy Guesthouse

Whichever hotel you are interested in, Brussels has accommodations for you! Happy travels!

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