Last updated: 09:00 PM ET, Mon March 07 2016

Opinion Home | A Cruising Couple's Column

  • A Cruising Couple | March 7, 2016 9:00 PM ET

    5 Reasons to Include Brussels in Your Itinerary

    5 Reasons to Include Brussels in Your Itinerary

    If you’re planning a trip to Belgium, chances are you’ve heard mixed reactions about its capital city, Brussels. Many locals will urge you to get out of Brussels as quickly as possible, so that you have more time to immerse in ever-so-charming Ghent and Antwerp. Others will say that there are perhaps prettier places to visit in the country, but there is too much to see and do in Brussels to simply pass it by.


    Of course, there is no right or wrong answer; whether or not you fall in love with Brussels will largely depend on your travel personality. However, after our own short visit to the city, we are convinced that everyone should visit Brussels at least once. Though perhaps not in the same way as fairy-tale Bruges or lovely Antwerp, Brussels’ vibrant, raw and edgy atmosphere proved much more enchanting than we would ever have expected.

    VIDEO: World Renowned Beer in Brussels

    Here’s five reasons why you should consider making Brussels a stop in your travels:

    1. The Comic Book Culture

    Brussels - Graffiti & Street Art

    Photo via Flickr/William Murphy

    You don’t have to be a comic book junkie to appreciate the unique role comics play in Belgian culture. And one of the best ways to learn more about Brussels’ comics is along the whimsical Comic Book Route.

    The fun attraction takes visitors past more than 50 oversized comic strip murals. A few of the fan favorites include the renowned Tintin and Broussaillie. If you choose to walk the entire route, you’ll also get a great glimpse into both Brussels’ historic center and off-the-beaten-track neighborhoods. Alternatively, keep your eyes peeled as you are wandering around the city and you’re bound to stumble upon a mural or two without even trying.

    2. Mannekin Piss

    Mannekin Piss

    When you walk past the enormous crowd of tourists taking photos of the small statue, you might be tempted to roll your eyes and walk away. But let’s be honest — how can you not smile at this cheeky bronze statue of a naked boy urinating into a fountain base? Said to symbolize the rebellious nature of the city, you’ll find replicas of the famous little boy all around Brussels.

    3. Atomium


    Atomium is to Brussels what the Eiffel Tower is to Paris. Originally constructed for the 1958 Brussels World Expo, the unique cell-like building was never supposed to remain standing into the 21st century. And just like the Eiffel Tower, some locals love the unique architecture … others consider it an eyesore. If you enjoy history or learning about fascinating cultural events surrounding the World Expo at this time, then you’ll love the full tour of the building. And even if all that sounds like a bore, a trip to the top “cell” of Atomium still provides beautiful panoramic views of the city.

    4. The Grand Place At Night

    The Grand Place At Night

    This mesmerizing UNESCO World Heritage Site is considered to be one of the most beautiful squares in all of Europe — and we have to say that we completely agree. The ornate, medieval buildings date back to the late 17th century. The square is gorgeous all the time, but there is something especially magical about it at dusk when the buildings are just beginning to light up.

    READ MORE: Brugge, Belgium: Budget-Breaking Craft Beer Heaven and Glorious Gluttony

    5. The Food



    Beer, waffles, mussels, chocolate, frites … don’t go to Belgium expecting to lose a few pounds! The culinary scene in Brussels is as mouthwatering as it sounds, and you’ll find plenty of fantastic restaurants serving up iconic Belgian dishes and world flavors. Comme Che Soi is voted by many to be one of the best restaurants in Brussels; expect upscale Belgian and French cuisine. If you’re specifically after great mussels and beer along with a fun atmosphere, then try Le Chou de Bruxelles.

    What are your favorite reasons to visit Brussels? Would you recommend the city to travelers?

More Belgium


You may use your Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook information, including your name, photo & any other personal data you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on Click here to learn more.

A Cruising Couple A Cruising Couple's Column

A Cruising Couple Dan and Casey are the two lovebirds, world travelers and adventurers extraordinaire behind the popular travel blog A Cruising Couple - adventure travel with a dash of class. Their stories and photographs feature that special place where experiential and stylish travel meet. Find out how you can spend less money, live more adventurously and travel more luxuriously on their blog,
Finding Your Transportation at the Cancun Airport

Vacation Packages