Belgium, the land of beer, the fries, the bonbons and Manneken pis. A country that is easy for us Dutch to reach by car or train. Our southern neighbors have a lot to offer, such as beautiful old towns, where you can enjoy a day or a weekend.
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The city of Namur is southeast of Brussels. It’s a student city, where it’s a bustle of cosiness. There are many cool eateries and bars in town. When the sun is showing again, it is soon a pleasant crowd on the terraces of the many small squares in the city. The old center of Namur is still in very good condition.Although many historic buildings in the First and Second World War were severely affected, everything here was perfectly restored. Especially the Citadel, which is in the place where the rivers meet the Meuse and the Samber, is spectacular. He originates from the Middle Ages and extends high above the city. From here you can also enjoy a beautiful view of Namur. Do you want to visit Namur in a festive mood? Then come to the city around the third Sunday of September, then there is the Walloon Region.
TOP 10 FUN CITY TRIPS TO BELGIUM
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Hasselt is located next to Limburg, near Maastricht. Most Dutch people know this place, because here is the famous Plopsa Indoor, a huge indoor playground for young children. But Hasselt has much more to offer. It features many museums. The best known are the National Gin Museum, the Fashion Museum and the Municipal Museum. The city also has the largest European Japanese garden. This huge garden is a symbol of inner peace and natural beauty. You can also find peace in the Kiewit Nature Domain, a park with a children’s farm. At cozy restaurants, cafés and terraces, the old city of Hasselt certainly does not have a shortage.
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In the south of Belgium is Bergen. This city is also called Mons. This is a very old city, which already had inhabitants for the year 0. From the Middle Ages there are also buildings. Some of these buildings are still present in the city. In addition to history, you will also find a lot of cosiness in the city. This is because Bergen is a student city with many cozy cafés, bars and terraces. The Grand Place, which dates back to the Middle Ages, always busts. But there are also many historic buildings on the Grand Place, such as the city hall, Hôtel de Ville. There is a small statue in the façade: Mons’ monkey. Somewhere outside of Bergen there is a castle (of Havré), dating back to the 13th century, and the most beautiful animal park of the Benelux, Pairi Daiza (containing two giant pandas).
Hubert DENIES / Wikicommons
Between Antwerp and Brussels is the small town of Mechelen. This authentic historic city is full of museums and catholic buildings with the culmination of the Saint Rombout cathedral. This Gothic building dates back to the 13th century. In the tower there are no less than six floors with all the different rooms, including the cloister room and the clockwork room. In the beautiful palace ‘Hof van Busleyden’ is the Municipal Museum of Mechelen established with a wealth of art. Mechelen’s Grand Place is always cozy at the many restaurants and terraces. Also here is the immense town hall, which consists of different building styles.
Somewhere east of Brussels, Leuven is located. This city is mostly known as the Belgian beer capital.The well-known old Artois brewery is located here. In Leuven, one of the most important university universities of the Benelux, namely the Catholic University of Leuven with beautiful university libraries.This makes the city a very vibrant student city. The squares in the old town are always cozy, especially on the Grote Markt. Here is the city’s most famous building, the Town Hall, a huge gothic building with as many as 236 images incorporated in the façade. You can also visit in a tour of the beautiful building style and many old paintings.
Just south of Maastricht is the big city of Liège . This city is famous for its Liège waffle. The characteristic of this waffle is that it is heavier than all others (due to the huge sugar crystals contained in it). It also has an oval shape. Across Liège, the Meuse flows through which you can book a cruise through the city. In the main square, Place du Marché, it always bustles of cosiness. This is due in particular to the many students who count the city. On the outskirts of Liège there is a huge staircase, the Bueren staircase. You can climb this to enjoy spectacular city views. Are you coming to Liège on a Sunday? Then visit the Sunday Market La Batte, located on the quay of the Meuse.
The capital of Belgium, Brussels , is located in the center of the country. This is the place where the world famous Manneken Pis is located. The statue of the laying boy is on the corner of the Eikstraat and the Stoofstraat, in the center of the city. Brussels is also seen as the capital of Europe. There are many European institutions, such as the European Parliament and the European Commission. It is even so that Brussels, after Washington, is the largest political center of the world. But for tourists there is plenty to see and experience. This includes many museums, which you can visit for free with the Brussels Card. At the Heiselpark is the huge Atomium. This is an artificial structure of no less than 102.7 meters high. It has been since the World Exhibition in 1958 and consists of metal iron. The royal palace, where the Belgian king works, is also in Brussels. And then there is the cozy Grote Markt, the Jubelpark and the strip route, where you can watch comic characters on frescoes through the city. In short, a city with a lot of possibilities and you definitely need to go for a few days.
Maros M raz / Wikicommons
The city of Antwerp is located just below the province of Brabant. Many Dutch people find their way to this bustling city every year. Antwerp is located in the famous Schelde district and features a very historic city center with ancient centuries, including the Grote Markt. Antwerp is rich in cozy restaurants, terraces and cafés. Also, it is a good place for shopping. It is even named as the best shopping city of the Benelux. With the Antwerp City Card you can see all the museums and churches of the city for free, such as the Museum de MAS. There is a large collection of art, but you can also enjoy spectacular views over the city from the panorama deck. The historic building of the Central Station is also worth a visit. Antwerp is famous for its beautiful Christmas market.
North-West of Belgium is Ghent . This is a very atmospheric city with a rich history. It features many cultural-historical buildings, museums and markets. It also has a very lively nightlife. If you want to see Ghent from a special place, do it from the water from a rented boat or by coach (including guide). But Ghent’s top attraction is once a year, but for 10 days. These are the Ghent festivals, which take place every July.
The medieval city of Bruges is located on the North Sea in northern Belgium. The city is widely visited by tourists because it is rich in cultural heritage. The historic city center is even UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. The old buildings, squares and streets flow very well together with modern times. In Bruges you can enjoy food and beverages in the many restaurants. It is a walhalla for Burgundians.That’s also the case with (Belgian) chocolate. There are more than 50 chocolatiers in this city. Brugge is even called ‘The Venice of the North’. This name is given to the city by the vast wealth it has on canals and romantic bridges. Therefore, a city tour is definitely not a bad idea