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Best Local Scene in Brussels

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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.

Jean-Felix Hap Park is a beautiful garden park that is located in Etterbeek. The property also includes the ruins of a 16th century castle. In 1804 the mayor of Etterbeek, Albert Joseph Hap, bought the property, which was eventually donated to the city in 1988. There are many benches and tables here to lounge at. Recently, some of the park has been converted in to a educational space that showcases examples of different home gardens with a diversity of plants and native animals.

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.

This is a traditional working-class neighborhood, dominated by the gargantuan Palais de Justice (constructed in 1866-1883 and until recently the largest building in the world). The Marolles now offers a wide selection of dining establishments and antiques shops. Classy restaurants line up next to smoky bars. The neighborhood is famous for its daily flea market on Place du Jeu-de-Balle, the central square, but arrive early (before 6am!) if you want to pick up the genuine bargains.

Located in the area of Ixelles, the Ixelles Ponds are a set of two ponds that make for a popular gathering place for locals. The water here is not safe for contact and so visitors are not allowed enter the pond. One can walk along the shore and enjoy the peace or enjoy the picturesque Art Nouveau houses nearby. Sit down on a bench and out look out onto the water to admire the waterfowl or enjoy a picturesque walk around the ponds.

Fishermen sailed (and later steamed) into the heart of Brussels, selling their fresh fish in this charming square. Many of the fishmongers who peddled here decided to stay, and now this whole neighborhood is teeming with seafood spots. During the day this is a teeming fish market, and it's one of the oldest in the city. You can find luxurious restaurants as well as stalls where you can barter for the freshest catch.

Made up of a seemingly austere mass of steel and concrete, the European Quarter carries a lively cultural spirit that belies its otherwise businesslike personality. Centered around the Berlaymont building that houses the European Commission since 1969, the sprawling corners of the quarter hold several monumental landmarks, vibrant squares, world-class museums, shopping avenues, and verdant landscapes within its boundaries. Once known as the Leopold Quarter, this neighborhood was originally a residential area, before the arrival of the commission transformed it into the official hub it is today. This bustling quarter is home to important landmarks such as the intimidating Europa Building and European Parliament, the ever-crowded Place du Luxembourg, or 'Plux' and historic Antoine Wiertz Museum.

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