Beautiful Brussels, Belgium

Beautiful Brussels, Belgium – things to see and the BEST places to eat in Brussels. Waffles and 5 star restaurants galore!

Beautiful Brussels, Belgium - things to see and the BEST places to eat in Brussels. Waffles and 5 star restaurants galore!

Our last stop on our Belgium trip was Brussels. We used our ACPrail tickets and took the 35 minutes train ride from Ghent straight to Brussels. We took a cab straight to Hotel Made in Louise and started exploring. 
Brussels is very different from Bruges and Ghent. 
First and foremost, it is a HUGE city! It is the capital of Belgium and the European Union.
There is TONS of security around. Armed military personnel at the train stations and other areas around the city.
Brussels feels a lot more European, and they speak French instead of Dutch.

Manneken Pis is the symbol of Brussels.
It was made in 1619.
It is a 24-inch high bronze statue that depicts a boy peeing into a fountain basin.
It is quite the tourist attraction.
The city even dresses him up for various events in the city.
This day he was wearing his soccer uniform for the big game!
I read somewhere that he has over 900 costumes.

Right next to the statue are several great waffle shops.
They have replicas of Manneken Pis. 
I got caramel and whipped cream.
Look at all the choices! Waffle Heaven!!!!

I also sampled a liege waffle with Nutella and whipped cream. YUM!
I loved the waffle shops in the super touristy area – they were only 1€ for the waffle and 1€ for each topping.

Maison Dandoy is famous for inventing Speculoos cookies.
I think most of us in the USA know speculoos as Biscoff.
Maison Dandoy is also famous for their waffles!
We tried a fresh Brussels Waffle with caramel.
The caramel was more like syrup.
The Brussels Waffle is what we call Belgium Waffles.
This was THE BEST Belgium waffle I’ve ever eaten! SO good!

We also sampled Maison Dandoy’s liege waffle.
We got out waffle with speculoos spread on it. 
It isn’t on the menu, but they will add it on top of the waffle if you ask.
It was to-die-for!!!
There are LOTS of Maison Dandoy locations in Brussels.
To get the waffles, go to the Maison Dandoy Tea Room.
The address is:
Rue Charles Buls 14
1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
The Grand Place is the central square of Brussels.
This building is the King’s House. It houses the Manneken Pis’ wardrobe.

Town Hall – isn’t it wonderful?!

The buildings are covered in gold! 
They apply the gold by hand and are constantly maintaining it.

Legend has it that Karl Marx wrote The Communist Manifesto here at the Swan House Restaurant.

I LOVED the colorful windows of this building!

Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert is a beautiful shopping place in Brussels.

There are tons of great shops. Most are very high end.
It is a great place to check out the best of the best in Brussels.

LOVED the lanterns on this street!

Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula

Mont des Arts

LOVED the garden and the view of the Grand Place.

The garden of Mont des Arts is maintained by Brussels Environment Institute according to the spirit of René Pechère, the landscape gardener who created it in 1958.
Le Carillon du Mont des Arts is a Jacquemart Carillion clock with 24 bells found on a arch of the Mont des Arts. 
Notice the 12 figurines –  they represent important historic and folkloric figures of Brussels through the ages. 
Jacquemart type clocks can be recognized by the character on top which marks every hour by striking the bell with a hammer. It was built for the 1958 World Fair that took place in Brussels.

Place Royale is located right behind the Mont des Arts area.
In 1831, the coronation of King Leopold I, Belgium’s first king, was held in the place. 
The funerals of King Leopold III and Prince Charles were also held in the square.

Royal Palace of Brussels is the official palace of the King and Queen of the Belgians in the centre of the nation’s capital Brussels. However it is not used as a royal residence.
The King and his family live in the Royal Palace of Laeken on the outskirts of Brussels.

The palace is located in front of Brussels Park.

Church of Our Blessed Lady of the Sablon
Legend has it that in 1348 Beatrijs Soetkens had a vision from the Virgin Mary telling her to steal a miraculous statue of the Virgin Mary from the church in Antwerp and bring it over to the Sablon chapel in Brussels. Since then, the church has become a place for pilgrimage in Belgium, with an annual procession to honor the statue.

Across the street from Church of Our Blessed Lady of the Sablon is Square du Petit Sablon.

The fountain-statue represents earls d’Egmont and the Hornes and was sculpted in 1864 by Charles-Auguste Fraikin.

We spent a couple of days with the Brussels tourism board (
They took us to some of the most AMAZING places to eat!!!
These Portuguese pastries from Foracdo were to-die-for!

SO delicious!

These pastries were like creme brûlée in puff pastry.
Wishing I had a dozen right now!
I obviously need to plan a trip to Portugal to eat ALL the pastries!
Forcado Pastelaria
Chaussée de Charleroi 196
1060 Saint-Gilles, Belgium

La Quincallerie
How beautiful is this restaurant?
It looked like something right out of The Great Gatsby!
We had an incredible dinner here. 
La Quincallerie
Rue du Page 45
1050 Ixelles, Belgium

We satisfied our inner caveman at Colonel.
We shared the beef rib. 
Fred Flintstone would have been happy!

We couldn’t resist trying Colonel’s take on a Snickers.

Rue Jean Stas 24
1060 Saint-Gilles, Belgium

This Kouign Amann at Charli was life-changing!
Better than the Kouign Amann that I ate in Paris!
Rue Sainte-Catherine 34
1000 Bruxelles, Belgium

We had a 5 star lunch at Gramm.
It was a 6 course gourmet meal with dessert!

Rue de Flandre 86
1000 Bruxelles, Belgium

You can’t go to Belgium and not eat chocolate!
We had the most amazing handmade gourmet chocolate at Laurent Gerbaud Chocolatier.
Laurent Gerbaud actually gave us a taste testing himself! SO neat!
The chocolate was amazing. 
Get the pralines and hot chocolate!
Laurent Gerbaud Chocolatier
Rue Ravenstein 2D
1000 Brussel, Belgium

Most buildings were commissioned by the Belgian government under the patronage of King Leopold II for the 1880 National Exhibition commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of Belgian independence.

The Arc du Cinquantenaire was added in 1905.

We used our ACPrail train tickets to take a quick trip to Dinant.
It is a TINY town about an hour from Brussels.

The saxophone was invented in Dinant!

After we Dinant, we took the train to Leuven for a few hours.

I LOVED Leuven! It was a college town with TONS of fun shops and restaurants.

I could have spent an entire day here!

We couldn’t leave Leuven without sampling some Belgium Fries.
These were the best we ate in Belgium!
 Where We Stayed
We stayed at Hotel Made in Louise.
It was about a 10 minute walk from the tourist area.
It was so peaceful and quiet. PERFECT for getting a good nights sleep!

The room was nice and big. 
TONS of great light during the day.

The bathroom was great. 
That shower was THE BEST!

How fun is this outdoor chess set?!?!
If only I knew how to play! LOL!
Hotel Made in Louise
Rue Veydt 40
1050 Bruxelles, Belgium
We had a great time Waffling Around Belgium for 2 weeks!
It was beautiful and the waffles and fries were DELICIOUS!
Don’t miss my other Belgium posts:

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