Belgium

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Our most recommended things to do in Belgium

Brussels: Atomium Entry Ticket with Design Museum Ticket

1. Brussels: Atomium Entry Ticket with Design Museum Ticket

The Atomium symbolizes an iron crystal, magnified 165 billion times, referring to the power of nuclear energy that in 1958 was intended for peaceful use. Today it carries on the debate of 1958: What kind of future do we want for tomorrow? It was not intended that the Atomium survive beyond the 1958 World Fair but its popularity soon made it a key landmark, first in Brussels, and then internationally. It has become one of the icons of Brussels, and since its inspired restoration in 2006, it is referred to as the most Belgian of monuments. The panorama alone is worth a trip to the Atomium. Thanks to its location on a naturally elevated plateau on the outskirts of town, the Atomium offers the only true 360-degree panoramic view of the 19 municipalities of Brussels. The permanent exhibition, Atomium, tells the history of this pavilion. This year there are also two temporary exhibitions. The first, ID#2021, is an immersive experience. Discover an exciting sound and light digital creation. The second, View from My Window, consists of a selection of more than 400 photographs depicting a Belgian success story that started with a Facebook group initiated in March 2020 at the start of the pandemic. The audio-visual installations, prints, webcams, and time-lapses give you an insight into the perspectives of the individuals involved. At 95 meters above ground in the top sphere of the monument, the Atomium Restaurant offers an extraordinary experience. Whether you choose Belgian specialties or seasonal dishes, Alexandre Masson revisits tradition, with the clouds at hand.

Ghent: 50-Minute Medieval Center Guided Boat Trip

2. Ghent: 50-Minute Medieval Center Guided Boat Trip

Take a boat close to the amazing Castle of the Counts to discover the most beautiful places of Ghent. A guide will take you through the fascinating history of medieval Ghent and its historical buildings and architecture on this 50-minute tour. Enjoy the famous three towers of Ghent, various medieval churches and monasteries, the birthplace of Charles V of Spain, majestic guild halls, a breathtaking castle, and much more! Hear the stories behind these magnificent monuments. Your tour is guided in English, Dutch, and French. There are also illustrated translations into German, Spanish, Italian, Russian and Japanese available on board.

Brussels Mini-Europe Admission Ticket

3. Brussels Mini-Europe Admission Ticket

Discover Europe's most popular attractions in miniature. Encounter monuments from across the continent recreated down to the smallest detail. See a 4-meter high Big Ben, and 13-meter tall Eiffel tower, with all attractions recreated at a scale of 1 to 25. Be amazed at the eruption of Vesuvius and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Watch the launch of Ariane V and marvel at many other working models. Both young and old will enjoy spending a couple of hours exploring Mini-Europe. Experience also a fascinating and interactive Spirit of Europe exhibit that takes you through the history of the European Union, its place in the world. A catalog brimming with interesting anecdotes is included with the purchase of an adult ticket.

Ghent: Medieval Center Guided Boat Tour

4. Ghent: Medieval Center Guided Boat Tour

See the highlights and hidden pearls Ghent has to offer on a river cruise. Learn about the city's history from your local guide. Start in the beautiful medieval harbor of Ghent. Board the boat and meet your tour guide. Sail along the River Leie as you take in the sites of the city. Admire the three famous towers of Ghent: St Bavo's Cathedral, the Belfry of Ghent, and St Nicholas Church. See medieval churches and monasteries as you are taken back in time by your guide. Take in the Prinsenhof, the Princes' Court where Charles V of Spain was born. Marvel at majestic guildhalls and the medieval Gravensteen (Castle of the Counts) before heading back to dry land.

Brussels: Magritte Museum Entry Ticket

5. Brussels: Magritte Museum Entry Ticket

Visit the world's largest collection of works by René Magritte. Enjoy access to more than 230 works and archives of the famous surrealist artist. View oil paintings, sketches, and sculptures, as well as posters, photographs and films made by Magritte himself. After viewing the surrealist masterpieces, take a relaxing break at the on site café and restaurant. Stop by the shop for an impressive selection of posters, postcards, gifts and books.

Brussels Pub Crawl

6. Brussels Pub Crawl

Experience the diverse and vibrant nightlife scene of Brussels with a fun and friendly guide, and taste some refreshing beers and great cocktails at discounted prices. Avoid the usual tourist bars and make new friends from around the world as you crawl from venue to venue over 3 hours. Get a wristband at the start of the night that gets you discounted drinks, including €1 beers at local pubs. Enjoy a welcome beer to start the evening, and then make your way to 4 of the best bars and clubs in town. Dance the night away at the last club, where the DJ spins top tunes every night. Benefit from free entry, a happy hour which lasts all night and a late closing time of 6:00 AM.

Bruges: Choco-Story Chocolate Museum Tour

7. Bruges: Choco-Story Chocolate Museum Tour

Cocoa has been tickling taste buds for centuries, from the spicy drink in the Maya and Aztec civilizations to the popular sweet chocolate milk in Europe. With more than three people out of four loving chocolate, it’s hardly surprising that there is an enormous fascination for this exquisite treat. This tour aims to bring to life the 4,000-year-old history of chocolate in words, pictures, and flavors. The museum submerges you in the exciting world of chocolate, taking you on a journey of the senses through time. Young or old, passionate chocoholic or simply just interested, the Chocolate Museum will stimulate your fascination. The museum is composed of three parts, telling the story of the origin and evolution of chocolate through a unique collection of almost a thousand objects. Besides the history, the museum also reveals how chocolate is made, with special attention for the variety of raw ingredients and the development of the production process. In the demonstration center you will uncover the secret of beautiful silky chocolate, getting the opportunity to taste the chocolate products made in the museum.

Zeebrugge to Bruges Return Cruise Shuttle Service

8. Zeebrugge to Bruges Return Cruise Shuttle Service

See the sights at your own pace and save money with a shuttle transfer service from the cruise terminal at Zeebrugge to the historic heart of Bruges. Avail of a quick transfer service that runs from the port to the city every 30 minutes in the morning and back to the port every 30 minutes in the afternoon. Take the worry out of your transportation needs during a cruise stopover in the pretty city of Bruges. Simply take the free port shuttle service to the gate, and then walk down to the bus departure point for embarkation. Get dropped off just a few minutes walk from the historic city center of Bruges.

Bruges: Guided Rickshaw Tour

9. Bruges: Guided Rickshaw Tour

Enjoy a private guided tour of Bruges with a professional guide. Sit back and relax on a specially designed rickshaw bike for a unique and easy way of traveling around the city. Start the tour at Market Square and head out past the city’s landmarks and monuments and into some of the lesser-known parts of town. See the highlights of the town as you hear about local legends and learn some fun facts. Enjoy a relaxing tour of the best parts of Bruges and the interesting commentary of your knowledgeable guide.

From Brussels: Bruges and Ghent in a Day Guided Tour

10. From Brussels: Bruges and Ghent in a Day Guided Tour

Meet your guide at 8:30 AM in the center of Brussels and relax on the 100-kilometer journey to Bruges. Upon arrival, discover the charms of “the Venice of the North” and see why the entire historic center was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Marvel at highlights such as the Lake of Love (Minnewater Lake) and the 13th-century Begijnhof complex, founded in 1245 to house lay religious women. Go to Walplein Square, where the shady trees and cafes provide a perfect place to relax. Visit Stoofstraat on the site of the city's former Red Light District, and see medieval monuments such as the 11th-century Old St. John’s Hospital. Look at the world's second tallest brickwork tower at the Church of Our Lady, and see other historic monuments such as Gruuthuse Palace, the Dijver Canal and the tiny piazza of Tanners Square (Huidenvettersplein). Go to one of the city's most photographed spots at Rozenhoedkaai, and admire the Belfry on Castle Square. Admire the facades of the Gothic-style Town Hall and the 12th-century Basilica of the Holy Blood. Visit Market Square (Grote Markt) to see the Bell Tower (Belfort) and Sint-Salvator’s Cathedral. Then enjoy 1-hour's free time for lunch (at your own expense) and the chance to sample some of the city's delicious chocolates.  Next, drive to Ghent, where the inhabitants have been popularly known as "noose-bearers“ since the days of Charles V. Take a guided tour of the city's historic buildings, such as the Castle of Gerald the Devil and Saint Bavo Cathedral, where you can look at the painting of “The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb” by the Van Eyck brothers. Admire the Belfort (Bell Tower) and peculiar Gothic and Renaissance-style Town Hall. See one of the city's oldest monuments at St. Nicholas’ Church opposite the unusual facade of the Masons’ Guild House. Journey along the embankments of the medieval port of Graslei, and discover other highlights such as the majestic Castle of the Counts of Flanders, the charming Patershol neighborhood, the Great Butchers’ Hall, the Old Fish Market and Friday Market Square.

Belgium is a beautiful country rich in landscape, culture and old world history. One of the most pleasant ways to experience much of Belgium's offerings is by coach tours. These sightseeing excursions most often cover much of the urban areas of Belgium's largest cities (Brussels and Antwerp) in as little as one day. Brussels is a large metropolitan area that boasts architectural gems from the modern era as well as several previous centuries. To absorb much of the history and nuances of the area, look for guided tours that include The Royal Palace, European Commission Headquarters, the famous Manneken Pis statue, and Lake of Love. These types of tours are great for families, seniors, or groups traveling together.

Of course, if you'd like to experience a bit of Belgium on your own, check out the market square in Antwerp, the Cantillon Brewery and Delirium Cafe in Brussels to sample some of the best beers in Europe, or wander through the numerous art, history and military museums including the Horta Museum. Bike tours are also available for those that prefer more physical activities, or you may want to purchase a hop on/hop off pass for the cities' bus systems. No matter which method you use, you will undoubtedly leave the area agreeing that Belgium is filled with sights worth seeing.

Other Sightseeing Options in Belgium

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