Belgium’s capital city Brussels is a great place to escape to for a weekend.
With plenty to do there, from scoffing waffles and frites to touring the European Parliament and the many, many chocolatiers, you’ll have a really lovely weekend in a city not many people think of getting away to very often. Moreover, there are so many weekend accommodation options – from hostels and hotels, to apartments and fabulous guest houses.
Here’s our list of cool things to do in Brussels on a weekend getaway. You won’t be bored (and you’ll drink plenty of beer), so make sure you’re prepared by taking notes on what we have to say.
Since you’ll be limited for time having just a weekend to see Brussels, you should really take a free walking tour on your first day.
Head to the Grand Palace (basically the town square of Brussels) and go to the people with umbrellas offering a free walking tour. You’ll be walking for around two hours, but you’ll get a whole overview of the city, to see the best apartments in Brussels (oh, the luxury!), where to eat, where to drink and all of the city’s history too.
Free walking tours are really cool, and you get the insider knowledge as well as the sights when you participate in one.
This one may not strike you immediately as a cool thing to do in Brussels on a weekend getaway, but we promise you it actually is.
The European Parliament is free to get into (you just need some government-issued ID) and you get given a headset and a chance to sit inside the debating chamber. You can take as many photos as you like, and you get to see something pretty cool and unique during your weekend away.
You’ll learn something new and still have plenty of time to explore the rest of Brussels.
Whether or not you buy your lunch from a local supermarket, or take it out from a restaurant, or choose to pay a bit more and eat at a restaurant right in the centre of the Grand Palace, you have to eat there.
Even if you just sit on the cobbles surrounded by the stunning gothic architecture, it’s worth it. Eat your lunch in the Grand Palace one day with the sun beating down on your back and the world feeling as if it has been put to rights.
It’s a lovely place to be, and it’s a great spot to people-watch too, so head there one day during your weekend getaway.
Belgium is renowned for its chocolates so it would be rude not to go shopping in every single one of the chocolatier shops.
Quite a few of the shops don’t give out tasters as much as you’d like them to, but if you ask to try certain chocolates, many will be much obliged to let you taste. Make sure you shop around too and don’t just buy from the first chocolatier you see.
Elisabeth Chocolatier is a personal favourite – and the shop itself is divine to just look at. There is precision in all of their work and a real artisan theme in the shop and the chocolates. We think they’re to die for.
Belgium isn’t just famous for its chocolate. Belgium is famous for its prolific beer selection in every single pub going.
It’s a nice idea if you enjoy a drink to go on a pub crawl around Brussels and try a selection of the cool beers the city has to offer. One bar in particular, Delirium, is a great one for flavoured beers. From raspberry to banana to a good, old-fashioned Trapist beer, there must be something to suit everyone’s tastes in there.
A pub crawl is also a good way to meet other people, especially if it’s an organised one by a hostel or hotel you’re staying in, which will create some very lovely memories for you in the future.
Enjoy your time in Brussels – we hope you take on board our top cool things to do in Brussels on a weekend getaway!
My hubby and I are constantly on the road. After over 40 countries I became an editor of the Travel Section at Independent Femme, and I'm more interested in seeing even more new places than ever. Feel free to drop me a line. I'm also a contributor at www.travelbelles.com.