Brussels is a small and thriving city that has a multicultural population. The multiple languages and cultures reflect its imperial past and this past and its current place at the heart of Europe meet in a dizzying array of bars and restaurants, making eating out in Brussels a an absolute delight.
It is impossible to visit the city and not see the amazing Grande Place and the iconic Manneke Pis statue that is only streets away. However, to see Brussels real charms, you have to venture down the many medieval streets that flank the impressive buildings and squares. If city life gets too much for you, then you can head for one of the many parks in the city, or go slightly out of town to the beautiful forests that surround the capital.
You won't come home from Brussels without having tasted some of their world-famous handmade chocolate, as it’s an attraction no one can resist! Once Brussels has you in its grasp, you won’t want to go home.
Brussels is the secret food capital of Europe. It is a little known fact that it ranks in the top three countries in Europe for the most Michelin starred restaurants per capita. The top four that we recommend are Le Falstaff, Bonsoir Clara, Fin de Siecle Rue des Chartreux and Belgo Belge.
Belgium is the home of a large selection of different types of beer. Each bar that you visit in Brussels will have at least 20 beers in house and many stock more than this. Hang out with the trendy Belgians in Pl St Gery in the city centre, or for something a little more understated, go to Pl Chatelin.
Brussels is full of up and coming designers. For the fashion conscious checking out Rue Dansaert is a must. If you want a day trip, then Antwerp offers excellent designer shopping as well as more diamonds than you could imagine. If you would like to check out the latest trends from the established fashion houses, go to Boulevard de Waterloo, but be prepared to leave with your wallet lighter than one you went in.
If you prefer to shop in high-street shops, visit Rue Neuve with its department store INNO, and shopping centre City 2. Rue de Bailli off Avenue Louise is the perfect place to snap up some bargains, and the antique shops around the Sablon area are perfect if you’re searching to buy something for your home. More contemporary homeware shops can be found in the nearby Rue de Blaes and Rue Haute.
If you love bargains than you have to check out the flea market on Place du Jeu de Balle on Sunday mornings.
It’s impossible to leave Brussels without a box or five of the amazing chocolates. The award winning Pierre Marcolini is at Pl Sablon on Rue des Minimes. Godiva and Neuhaus have stores in the area.