Belgium's iconic Grand Place stands as a testament to the city's glorious cultural and economic legacy. Recognized as one of the most splendid market squares in Europe, its arcade is completely enclosed by tall, gabled Flemish Renaissance buildings decorated with intricate ornamentation and carved statues. Of the buildings that surround the square, the Town Hall with its Brabantine Gothic tower and the Neo-Gothic Brussels City Museum are especially remarkable. Impressive as it is by day, the square is even more stunning at night under the golden glow of street lights. During spring and summer evenings there is a light show that brings to life the city's musical and cultural heritage.
This location is home to many upscale antiques stores, along with Emporio Armani, the world-renowned pastry boutique Wittamer, and much more. The square is distinguished by a statue of Minerva, given to the city as a gift in 1751. Here you'll also find Our Lady Church and the Sablon Church. On Saturday from 9a-6p and on Sunday from 9a-2p an antique market is in full swing. Just across the square you'll find Place du Petit Sablon, a quaint garden filled with statues.
Built in 1928 by architect Victor Horta, the Centre for Fine Arts draws together all art forms under the same roof: visual arts, music, theater, literature, ballet and an assortment of temporary exhibits. The world-famous Henri Le Bœuf Hall is a concert hall boasting impressive acoustics. The Film Museum is housed in the basement. There are 15 societies funded by this museum, including the Europalia Society and the Festival of Flanders. These associations guarantee that the center is filled with continuous events. For ticketing and event information, visit the website.
Spanning a sizable area in the valley of Woluwe, the emerald expanses of the Woluwe Park offer a wealth of natural beauty. The velveteen green spaces of the park have stood the test of time since they first arose at the behest of King Leopold II. During the Universal Exposition of 1897, the king wished to build a massive park that would draw the eye of the bourgeois, at the same time linking the Cinquantenaire and the domain of Tervuren with one another. The park evokes instant awe and wonder, with its quiet leafy alcoves, sparkling ponds, and nearly 300 billowing trees that feature across its broad expanse. It is also home to ducks, swans, gulls, and Egyptian geese, who are seen frolicking merrily along the park's tranquil ponds.
Facing the Egmont Palace, on Rue aux Laines, Egmont Park is home to several sculptures. Of all the statues within, the statues of Peter Pan and that of Price Charles-Joseph de Ligne are much adored. A slice of peace and quiet amid the bustle of the city, the park makes for a nice walk or a short picnic, no matter how old or young you are. Parc d'Egmont also incorporates interesting attractions that seem like they're right out of a fairy tale like an old Gothic well and an Orangerie, to name a few.
Known as one of Brussels' best parks, the beautiful Bois de la Cambre borders both the Sonian Forest as well as the hip Avenue Louise. The park itself contains a small lake with an island in the center, Robinson's Island. It is the perfect place to relax after a long day of shopping, and you can also visit the Abbaye de la Cambre while you are there.
Place du Luxembourg is a city square located in Brussels. It is a popular hangout for locals as there are many bars and restaurants, banks and retail outlets at the square. One of the prime highlights of the square is John Cockerill's statue.
Stop by to see a debate session in action between EU member countries at the European Union Parliament building. The Parliament is home to the only elected body of the European Union; here, members decide important and pressing legislation that impacts the everyday lives of European Union citizens. Witness firsthand the process of lawmaking, where issues like consumer rights, transportation and civic rights take the stage! If you're interested in politics, stop by here to see how this multilateral body functions!
From dinosaur fossils to live tarantulas to rare gems, the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences Museum explores the natural wonders of our fascinating planet. The permanent galleries are unique and interesting, including a Gallery of Evolution, Insects Hall, and Minerals Hall. In addition to the permanent displays, the museum features several temporary exhibitions throughout the year, including interactive exhibits. This museum also serves as a research facility.
Leopold Park covers a large, landscaped space on Belliardstraat. With a history that dates back to 1880, the urban park still includes hints of this long, ancient history. Over the years, it has played many roles, starting out as a zoological park, then as a part of the campus for Solvay School of Commerce, and now as a popular public park. Home to a beautiful pond that's sustained by the nearby Maelbeek lake, Leopold Park, or Leopoldspark (Dutch), offers gorgeous views and a cool, shaded place where you can relax and soak up the sun with your family.
Petit Sablon Square, also called Place du Petit Sablon, is a beautiful square and garden that was built in the late 1800s. The square is surrounded by 48 statues symbolizing medieval guilds, giving you an insight into how people used to live. This lovely landscaped garden also features a fountain with the figures of the Count of Egmont and Count of Horn.