Brussels, a new Royal Holiday destination
Some attractions include Magritte museum, the canals of popular Bruges and Ghent, and historic Bastogne. Explore Bruges, filled to the brim with architectural and artistic treasures, folklore, chocolate shops, lace boutiques and fine restaurants. While you are here, stay at Hotel Citadines Toison d’Or Brussels, which is situated close to the prestigious Avenue Louise, superb luxury shops and the institutions of the European Union.
The Mont des Arts offers one of Brussels’ finest views. From the elevated vantage point, the famous tower of the Brussels Town Hall in the Grand Place is clearly visible. On a sunny day, you can see the Basilica de Koekelberg and even the age steel balls Atomium.
Visit Manneken Pis, a fountain-statue of a little boy cheerfully taking a leak, which has become perfect national symbol for surreal Belgium.
Often the tiny statue’s nakedness is largely hidden beneath a costume relevant to an anniversary, national day or local event: his ever-growing wardrobe is partly displayed at the Maison du Roi.
The Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert is a glazed shopping arcade in Brussels decorated in an Italian Cinquecento style. Inside there are restaurants, a theater, design boutiques and a museum.
Brussels can offer some tasty treasures that will please sweet lovers and food connoisseurs alike. Everyone knows about Belgian chocolate and probably the famous beer, but there are lesser known regional specialties that are well worth trying.
While you’re strolling around Brussels, you will come across booths selling Caricoles (‘escargots’ cooked in a spicy soup), freshly grilled chestnuts (autumn and winter only) and the famous Brussels Waffles. Try the ‘pain à la grecque‘, a delicious biscuit, and stop by Leonidas, Guylian and Godivas for some exquisite chocolates.
Take a tasting tour to discover why Belgium is so famous for its mouth-watering beers! No country in the world boasts a brewing tradition as rich and diverse as Belgium’s. Many of the popular cafes offer samplings of eight beers, accompanied by cheese, smoked ham and delicious Belgian chocolate.
An accomplished attraction located in the heart of Brussels, the Comics Art Museum has been honoring the creators and heroes of the 9th Art for more than 25 years. Tintin and the Smurfs lead the way towards further adventures, an encounter with a world where creativity has no limits. Enhanced by an exceptional Art Nouveau home designed by Victor Horta, the Comics Art Museum is just as much a tribute to the pioneers as a glimpse of contemporary comics art.
One street from the Grand Place, the Cocoa and Chocolate Museum in the historic Valk mansion (it is also a former brewery), pays homage to creating world beating pralines. In addition to exhibits teaching about the history of chocolate, starting from the first cultivation of cocoa beans by the Aztecs, there are daily demonstrations by a master chocolatier. Needless to say there is also a shop allowing you to pander to those hunger pangs at the end of the tour.
The City of Brussels can be visited on foot, by bicycle and by bus. If you love architecture you should take a stroll down the Ixelles and Saint Gillis neighborhoods, with beautiful buildings in Art Nouveau and Art Deco style. Our Citadines Toison d’Or Brussels apart hotel is located nearby.
Les Marolles neighborhood is one of the oldest quarters of Brussels. It is situated inside the former city fortified walls. A very nice way to get there is to start your visit from the Palais de Justice Square, from where you have an excellent viewpoint. There is a public lift that takes you down, to the heart of the Marolles. The main attraction is the Flee Market on Sunday morning at Place du Jeu de Balle. Cafés are numerous. Don’t be astonished to see people drinking beer at 9 o’clock in the morning.
The Atomium is perhaps Brussels most original building. Its nine 18 m (59 ft) diameter stainless steel clad spheres are connected in the shape of a unit cell of an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times. The spheres contain exhibit halls, and top one includes a restaurant, which has a panoramic view of Brussels. CNN named it Europe’s most bizarre building.
Make of fascinating Brussels your next
Royal Holiday destination!