Travel To Belgium?
Belgium is one of the major holiday destinations of Europe. It is also home to medieval architecture and dynamic cities such as Brussels and Antwerp. One of the interesting places of concern is the Royal Museum of Fine Arts (Antwerp), it has a huge collection of paintings right from 14th century and onwards. Also don’t forget Waterloo, remember the battle of Waterloo where Napoleon was defeated by the Duke of Wellington. This site is also one of the major factors for many tourists to make Belgium tourist destination.
The Ypres War Memorials and the Flander Battlefields are the other places of interest to see in Belgium. The history of the town of Ypres is associated with First World War. Here they have the silent memorials of the dead of First World War. Belgium has more than 3000 castles and out of which 300 are open for the public. The most popular Castle among them is the Gravensteen also known as the Castle of the Counts. Don’t forget to visit the Town of Spa where you can relax in its fine waters, Bruges also known as “Venice of North” because of its canals and bridges. The Diamond Museum (Antwerp) is famous for documenting ‘Antwerp cut’ and advanced scientific research.
Also, do not forget that Belgian chocolates are famous for lovers. Belgium produces over 172000 tons of chocolate every year and has more than 2000 chocolate shops. Also Belgium is known for its festival and carnivals. Some of the famous festivals and carnivals are Ommegang Festival (Brussels), Carnival de Binche (Binche), Stavelot (Mid-Lent Carnival) and Zinneke Parade (Brussels).
You can also take a trip to the flea market which is known for vintage clothes, crockery, furniture and household items. Place du Grand Sablon is paradise for antique lovers one of the best in Europe. There are many shops where you can find fashionable clothes, shoes and accessories from shops such as Brooklyn Antwerp, High and Mighty. You can also visit the Mier in general. People who like to do shopping can make Belgium tourist destination.
There is a common saying among Belgians that their food is cooked with French finesse and served with German generosity. The cuisine here is known for its mussels and frites, waffles and endive. Fish and seafood are equally important and the beer is good here, since Belgium is famous for brewing tradition. All type of meat and game birds are popular among here. And last but not the least Belgians love potatoes. Belgian endive or chicory is famous. Street foods such as French fries are served in paper cone with mayonnaise or curry sauce. The cuisine of Belgium is the reason why so many tourists make Belgium tourist destination.
Places To Visit And Things To Do In Belgium
Grand-Place – Considered one of the most beautiful medieval squares in Europe, the ornate Grand Place is the center of Brussels, where many historic buildings dating from the 17th century are located.
Hotel de Ville (Brussels, Belgium Town Hall) – The Town Hall of the City of Brussels is a Gothic building from the Middle Ages. It is located on the famous Grand Place in Brussels, Belgium.
Serres Royales De Laeken – The Royal Greenhouses of Laeken are a vast complex of monumental heated greenhouses in the park of the Royal Palace of Laeken in the north of Brussels. It is one of the major tourist attractions of the city.
Jardin du Petit Sablon – This neo-Renaissance garden in Brussles is a must visit when in the city. The garden has been designed in such a manner to represent the nine provinces of Belgium at the time of Independence.
The Jardin du Petit Sablon comes to life in spring and is home to beautiful floral arrangements and statues of important Belgian thinkers. There are also many benches in the park where one can sit and read, relax or just people watch. The park also has impressive landscaping and a fountain with ducks paddling around in it.
Parlamentarium – Experience the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium like never before. At this attraction, children and adults alike get to discover what the European institutions that represent them are all about in a refreshingly new way: the Parlamentarium. There are Portable Media Guides to take visitors through an interactive journey of European integration, revealing the impacts this process has had on the everyday lives of Europeans. As the first ever citizen’s exhibition to do so, the Parlamentarium caters to all 24 official languages of the European Union, and is completely free! facilities and multimedia guides have been designed to be fully accessible to those with special needs. This is Belgium tourism to the fullest!
Plantin – Moretus Museum – Printing museum which contains the two oldest printing presses in the world, complete sets of dies and matrices, and the full archive of the Plantin printing company.
Cogels – Osy lei – This unique street in the southern part of Antwerp dates from the the middle of the 19th century when the population boom in Antwerp made an enlargement of the city necessary. In 1866 Edouard Osy and John Cogels inherited farmland from their father Baron Jean Osy, The original idea to build new industry there because of the presence of the railroad to Holland, was given up. New houses were built and by the end of the 19th century the main avenue was named the ‘COGELS-OSY’ Lei which became the heart of the new ‘rich area’ of Antwerp.
The multitude of architectural styles and decorations is breathtaking. One can find a house in neo-gothic style standing right next to a house in Art Nouveau style. All the houses were built at the time when all over Belgium the neo-styles were very popular (neo-classicist, neo-gothic, neo-renaissance, etc…). The area is not very large, the best way to visit it is by walking around, taking a stroll through the streets and enjoying!
Vlaeykensgang – A favorite among tourists in Belgium is a walk along the Vlaeykensgang, a small alley close to the city hall.
This small historic alley is a throw-back to the late Middle Ages, a time when many streets weren’t wider than a doorway.
Vlaeykensgang, a small alley in AntwerpThe alley was created in 1591 and was originally inhabited by shoemakers. The name is presumably derived from the Flemish word ‘Vlaai’, a local kind of pie.
Bourla Theater (Bourlaschouwburg) – Restored in 1995 to its original splendor, this neoclassical theater dates from the 1830’s. This is indeed a splendid old-fashioned Belgium theater with sweeping balconies, so you always have a great view of the stage. The Bourla is now the permanent venue for the Youth Theater of Antwerp; the Royal Dutch Theater group also plays here.
Historic Centre of Brugge – The historic center of Bruges has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000 thanks to its status as one of the commercial and cultural capitals of Europe and its enduring Gothic architecture. This Belgium city center is cited as a great example of a medieval historic settlement, even while it has evolved over the years.
Minnewater Lake – Looking for a scenic place in Belgium to take a romantic daytime or evening stroll? Minnewater Lake offers urban nature lovers a perfect setting regardless of the season or time of year.
Groeninge Museum – Home of the Belgium Flemish Primitives from the 15th century, this museum includes works of Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden, Gerard David, Hugo van der Goes, Petrus Christus,and Hieronymous Bosch. The Groeninge Museum offers a varied overview of the history of Belgian plastic arts.Although the Flemish Primitives are a high point, you will also marvel at top 18th and 19th-century neoclassical pieces, masterpieces from Flemish Expressionism and post-war modern art.
Palace of the Liberty of Bruges (Landhuis van het Brugse Vrije) – After construction in 1525, the building was used as the Region Palace and after the second building was in 1725 became the Belgium Royal Court. Later the building became a tourist information point. Today, hosting national archive. The most important part of the building, is of course “Aldermann Room” with beautiful fireplace made of different materials: alabaster, marble and wood.
Botanical Garden Kruidtuin – This is Belgium’s oldest botanical Garden, in 1738 the University created this botanical garden for students of Medicine. Now the garden is used for scientific research as well as being a green oasis in the centre of the city for locals and visitors alike.
You will find an amazing collection of trees and shrubs in the 2.2 hectare garden. In addition to the collection of herbs, water and tub plants the 450 msq.m. greenhouse complex showcases the diversity of tropical and subtropical plants.
De Bibliotheektoren (The Library Tower) – The Library Tower is the first tower in Leuven Belgium to be permanently opened to the public. As you climb the steps, you will witness, in a moving and innovative manner, the destruction of Leuven that took place as a result of WWI and its reconstruction afterwards. The high point is a breathtaking view of the city from the balcony.
Groot Begijnhof (Great Beguinage) – This bit of Unesco world heritage from the 13th century is a bewitching piece of pure relaxation right in the heart of the city. It has a succession of streets, squares, gardens and parks, with dozens of houses and convents in traditional sandstone.
Kazerne Dossin – Kazerne Dossin is a unique place of remembrance for the Holocaust in Belgium. More than 25,000 Jews and Gypsies were gathered in the Dossin barracks and deported to Auschwitz- Birkenau. A brand-new museum has been built opposite the barracks to shine a new light on this symbolic place. Kazerne Dossin explores one of the darkest pages in Belgium’s history, while also examining human rights in their contemporary context. The Memorial, Museum and Documentation Centre on Holocaust and Human Rights informs, remembers and warns against exclusion, discrimination and mass violence, in the past and today.
St Rombout – The interior of this spacious church has important works of art, including statues of the Apostles dating from 1774 on the pillars of the nave and the grave of Cardinal Mercier (1851- 1926), who opposed German occupation forces in the First World War, which can be seen in the left aisle near the Lady Chapel. In the Chapel of the Sacrament at the base of the tower is a communion bench by Artus Quellin the Younger and in the second chapel on the left weapons of the Knights of the Golden Fleece who in 1491 maintained a chapter of their order in Sint- Rombouts. In the transepts are several pictures dating from the 15th-16th C. including, on the right, the remarkable painting “Christ on the Cross” by Anton van Dyck (1627). The Baroque high altar (1665) of white marble was created by Luc Fayd’herbe, a citizen of Mechelen. In the choir ambulatory are four Baroque tombs of archbishops, including von Granville, and pictures from the life of St Rombout.
Roll up your sleeves and get down to it, because this is what it’s all about in Technopolis, the Flemish Science Centre. By doing experiments themselves, visitors discover the how and why of countless technological and scientific phenomena.
Technopolis (The Flemish Science Centre) – The exhibitions explain everyday matters from an uncommon perspective and demystify the most complex scientific phenomena in a crystal-clear way. Science, after all, begins with amazement. In Technopolis you (re)discover the science and technology concealed behind familiar things from daily life. Fancy launching a hot air balloon yourself? Win a race with a dragonfly? Or why not take command in the cockpit of an aeroplane and try to land safely or perhaps you want to ‘walk on the Moon’? You can do all this and more in Technopolis.
“The new museum owes its growing reputation to its efforts to render the Holocaust relevant to a younger public, drawing attention to the underlying conditions that can lead to human rights violations.”
Begijnhof St Elisabeth (St. Elisabeth House) – The history of the Saint Elizabeth Church (Elisabethkerk) dates back to the beginning of the 13th century. Major renovations took place in the 17th century, when also the belfry was reconstructed. The Baroque style church was named after Elizabeth of Hungary, who is also known as Elizabeth of Thuringia.
Baggaertshof – The Baggaertshof was built in 1638, as a place where poor women in Belgium could go and live a virtuous and spiritual life. Somehow this place survived time, but is now completely surrounded by modern houses and shops. You can visit the place for free, but have a look at the opening times first, because it is only open in the afternoons and not every day. The “hof” consists of 12 tiny houses, a chapel and a lovely herb garden surrounded with some special trees like a mulberry tree. It is very small, so in a half hour max you have seen everything. It is near the shopping streets, so when you’ve done shopping, just have a look at this cute houses. It is just around the corner of the K shopping centre
There are lot more things which Belgium has to offer but if you want to know about it, it’s better that you make Belgium tourist destination. The above list is just a little scratch on the surface, there are a lot more places and attractions to see in Tournai, Mons, Diksmuide, Dinant, Lier, Hasselt and more!
Visit the European destinations category to learn more about other places to visit in Europe!