Reasons Why Brussels, Belgium Will Have A Place In Your Heart!

Brussels

A good few years ago, I was privileged to live in Belgium. It felt very surreal for me to live in a country where English is not the Second language and in a city located in the Wallonian region, where French was a dominant language. Everything felt so foreign to me and the fact that I made every single effort of learning and speaking French was a positive challenge (Not to mention, made me immersed in the language and culture). I remembered spending my very First Christmas and New Year on my own, something that I was not used to and ended in tears.

 

 

In spite of the culture shock, I had the time of my life living in Belgium. I enjoyed Belgian Waffles (Yum! Yum! Yum), Belgian Fries (Make sure to dip it with Ketchup and Mayonnaise because that’s how the Belgians enjoy it!) and of course… The Pralines! (C’est Deliceux! Tres Deliceux!). And living in Belgium gave me the chance to travel to Brussels on my days off… Something that I’ve always wanted to do. Those were the moments I had in Belgium and something that I’ve never forgotten, which made me want to come back there. Belgium is divided into 3 Regions, Wallonia (South and French Speaking), Flanders (North and Flemish Speaking) and then you have Brussels, which is the Capital City.

 

Belgian Flag
The Flag of Belgium.

 

Fast Forward a few years later… I decided to visit this amazing country. Since I wanted to reminisce my glorious time in Belgium, I decided to visit Brussels, home to the European Union and the city that a piece of my heart and soul remains. I got super excited coming back to Belgium and wanted to visit places that I once visited and also I wanted to visit.

As an adventure (And suitable for the budget travellers), I decided to take the Coach for a change from London Victoria Station to Brussels North Terminal with Eurolines (Owned by the National Express Coach line). It was a debate between the Eurostar or the Coach, as I would not recommend catching a flight to Brussels. It’s more of a hassle getting to Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted (Unless you live outside London and this is a much better option for you). Getting to Brussels from London took me 8 and a half hours on the coach, including getting on the Euro tunnel from Folkestone in Kent to Calais in France. And the return to London took about 5 and a half hours. Will I recommend taking a coach?… Not entirely, unless you are on a tight budget or maybe wanting to take a scenic route or want to be adventurous. Definitely, the best option would be taking a Eurostar from London St Pancras Station. But taking the coach, I managed to make friends on the way and this made up for the very long journey as well. If you opt for the Train, check Eurail here. 

 

Eurolines Bus
My Eurolines Bus to Brussels from London Victoria.

 

Bus 140 to Brussels and Amsterdam
Bus 140 to Brussels and Amsterdam from London Victoria

 

Staying in Avenue Louise Hotel felt like a Blast from the Past. It was very traditional and Renaissance. I loved how cosy my room was and I love the Artwork too. It was a bonus that I was staying in the Louise area, which is considered an upmarket area. I was able to find a great deal for this hotel on Expedia. 

 

My Room Key Card

 

 

My room
My Cosy room at the Hotel Izan. I love how Classic their theme is.

 

 

 

 

The Body Shop Shower Gel
I love this refreshing body wash gel from The Body Shop that was given to me as a gift and brought it with me on this trip!

 

 



 

 

 

 

If there were 7 things I loved about Brussels, these will be my 7 things:

 

1.Eglise Notre-Dame du Sablon (Church of Our Blessed Lady of the Sablon)

 

 

This 15th Century Catholic church looks beautiful, both the inside and outside! The architecture is amazing and baroque in style. Located in the Sablon area. Outside the church is a very beautiful park called Kleine Zavel Park  (Petite Sablon).

 

Mother Mary

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


2. The Grand Place 

 

The Grand Place
The Grand Place

 

 

Definitely not to be missed out! This is what I consider the “Heart of Brussels!” It is dubbed as a Unesco Heritage and considered one of Europe’s most beautiful Squares in Europe. There’s so much going on around this place and was very lucky to see the Christmas Lights show at night here as well! Was truly magical. Around the square, you will find the City Town Hall, shops, restaurants and not to mention… Museum of the City of Brussels! It’s definitely worth the visit!

 

 

 

I love my Brown Jacket from Next.

 

 

 

The Grand Place at night
The Grand Place at night in its colourful glory during the Christmas Lights Show.

 

 

 

Brussels Museum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

3. Manneken Pis

 

 

 

The First time I saw the Manneken Piss ( Little Man Pee in English ), I didn’t realise he was just behind me. It took me minutes to find it until someone pointed me to him! This was a good few years ago! LOL! The Manneken Pis is a Bronze statue of a little boy urinating into a fountain basin. It symbolizes the people of Brussels and their independence of mind.

 

Mannekin Pis Souvenir

 

Me and The Mannekin Pis
It’s a must!

 


4. Atomium

 

Atomium

 

A futuristic-looking landmark with spheres makes the Atomium a landmark not to be missed (Even if you are going there to take photos from the outside). If Paris has the Eiffel Tower, then Brussels has the Atomium to be proud of! It’s an observatory, where you get to see the view of Brussels. Unfortunately, I was not able to enjoy the observatory due to the lack of time. On my next visit to Brussels, I will definitely be writing a blog solely for the Atomium! But definitely, put this on your priority list of things to do when in Brussels.

 

The Atomium in Brussels
If Paris have The Eiffel Tower, then Brussels have The Atomium!

 

 

 

 

Atomium at Night
The Spheres of the Atomium light up at night!

 

 

 

 


5. Mini-Europe

 

Grand Place Min-Europe
The miniature version of The Grand Place.

 

One of my favourite places in Brussels and definitely a priority when visiting Brussels. This is a window to Europe. It showcases the different landmarks around European cities. Got me excited! The perfect time to enjoy this place is definitely during Spring and Summer. I am writing a separate blog about this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

6. Belgian Fries and Waffles

 

 

I have never enjoyed a very crispy and thick fries but in Belgium. They are divine and love love love them! Make sure to dip it with Ketchup and Mayonnaise as that is the proper way of enjoying Belgian Fries.

Waffles in Belgium are definitely worth the try. Around the Grand Place and The Manneken Pis, there are Waffle shops lined around enticing visitors and waffle lovers with a 2 Euro Waffle (word of warning, the 2 Euro waffles are usually the plain ones without the cream, strawberry, banana or any fancy filling. These would usually range around 6 Euros). Yum!

 

Belgian Fries and Burger
Belgian Fries and Burger… Perfect combination!

 

 

 

€2 Euro Waffles
Most Waffle shops will advertise their waffles at €2. These are the plain Waffles and the Fancy ones are usually priced at around €5-6.

 

 

 

Strawberry-Chocolate Belgian Waffle
I loved my Strawberry-Chocolate with Cream Waffle! Yum! Yum! Yum!

 

Belgian Waffle
Belgian Waffle anyone?

 

 


7. Praline and Chocolate Shop

 

 

The Belgians have definitely introduced the finest chocolates in the world. There are famous brands out there that sell Belgian chocolates, aka “Pralines.” What makes them special for the Belgians is that Pralines are given as a gift. This was something I’ve learned from one of the owners of a Chocolatier shop when I used to live in Belgium. They are very proud of their Pralines. They are very divine!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Godiva Belgian Hot Chocolate
This Godiva Belgian Hot Chocolate is Divine!

 



 

 

It was such an amazing City break to Brussels! This city made me a changed person when I used to lived there and I came back rekindling what the city has to offer. It may not be the biggest city in the world, but the city’s heart is big in its own right and I can’t wait for my return visit to the city! This city will always have a piece of me there!

 

 

Tintin and Snowy
Where’s Tintin and Snowy?

 

 

 

 

 

Before your visit to Brussels, make sure to take a European Travel adaptor with you at all times! 😉

 

European Travel Adaptor
My Lifesaver during my stay in Brussels. I was able to charge my phone and my ipad with this Travel adapter. Amazon sells something similar to this one here.

Globetrotter_G

 

 

 

Useful Information About Brussels: 

 

 

 

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Nicole
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Nicole

Omg! Finally your blog is up! This blog makes me feel so nostalgic.. it feels like Belgium is calling me to come back.. 🤔 next time please visit Brugge Geoff.. it’s a nice historical place too and you will find 2be “The Beer Wall” there, showcasing all the kinds of beer in Belgium.. I got to try Delirium with matching cheese 🧀! It’s so good! my Belgian Uncle told me once that Belgium is famous with their Belgian Chocolates and Waffles however they have the greatest kinds on beer too 🍺.. in fact they have over 1,000 variety.