Belgium! When we think of this place, we think of a far away land that might come straight out of a fairy tale book with brick streets and interesting buildings (all of which are true) – chocolate also comes to mind which may or not be true. Belgium is indeed in fact a wonderful place with wonderful sites that we think you should add to your bucket list.
1. Walk Through The Historic Centre of Brugge
A truly phenomenal place to see so many historic buildings preserved in one place. The square gets really busy with tourists but it’s still one of those places you have to at least walk through once! There are many great restaurants to grab a glass of wine and people watch – nice during the day but exceptionally wonderful at night.
2. Pay Your Respects At The Menin Gate Memorial
While the town attracts a lot of tourists, the ceremony at the Menin makes you realize the debt we owe to all those that sacrificed their lives for us. This year is the centenary year and the evening ceremony features a different person each night and tells the story of their contribution to the war effort. It is a must see monument that honors the war dead. Every night at 8pm the last post is played and a different serviceman remembered. A humbling experience you won’t regret.
3. Visit The Grand – Place
A magnificent square with beautifully maintained buildings. The Grand Place is simply wonderful. OK, so it is touristy, and a bit pricey, and crowded, but the architecture is amazing, the choice of pubs is great, and there is always something going on here.
4. Walk Through Central Station
This is a beautiful train station. A work of art. Please stop in and see for yourself.
5. Enjoy The Animals At The Pairi Daiza
An amazing selection of animals including Pandas which is a great surprise for many visitors! This is a wonderful place to see animals while experiencing the feeling of traveling around the world. The entrance is a little pricey but it is really quite beautiful inside!
6. Explore Belfry (Belfort) and Market Halls (Hallen)
If you have the time and are feeling fit then this is a must! This wonderful old building that holds the Bell Tower is lovely – fabulous views that are well worth the 300 odd steps. The queue is usually entertained by a very good street musician. Great spot for a nice picture.
7. Take A Tour Of The De Halve Maan (Straffe Hendrik) Brewery – And Enjoy A Drink
Excellent brewery tour, excellent guide who is typically funny and engaging and this a great way to see all the old brewery rooms and instruments. Also, there is a fabulous view from the top of the building. The tour is well worth the money, tasty treat of a blonde beer at the end of the tour.
8. Explore The Interesting In Flanders Fields Museum
Be prepared to leave here in disbelief. The displays leave nothing to the imagination and the full brutal horror of war is on show here. Allow yourself 2-3 hours for a decent visit. Worth a tour around to see all the different displays and for an extra €2 you can climb the bell tower and look out over the surrounding areas.
9. Minnewater Lake “The Lake Of Love”
Small lake next to a park with a lot of picnickers and you also share this lovely spot with swans and ducks wading in the water and on the shore. This is a beautiful place to visit as it is peaceful and tranquil, with some lovely views. Very easy to walk to and if you are interested in the history of an area, you will not want to miss this place.
10. Take Your Own Iconic Picture On St. Michael’s Bridge
The perfect viewing point of Gent’s famous and historic architectural buildings that line the canal. St Michaels Bridge is a sandstone bridge over the Lei river. It provides an iconic photo point of the Ghent Canals area.