Constantly overlooked, Brussels, Belgium is a haven for history buffs. From its big selection of food culture to its variety as Europe’s crossroads, Brussels has a lot to offer. Although it is not as big as London or Paris, Brussels’s neighborhoods truly bring something to the table. On top of that, it offers a lot of accommodation options that makes finding a place where to stay in Brussels easier.
Below, we listed five areas you may want to stay while you are in this Belgian city and what you may do while you are there.
The City Centre
Brussels’ City Centre attracts tourists, mainly with its astounding architecture, fascinating attractions, and a great option of places to eat and get entertained. Its convenience and popularity make it a smart choice for those who are visiting Brussels for the first time.
Things to do here
- Be dazed at the spectacular Brussels Stock Exchange building.
- Be drawn by delightful cuisine, along a road that was historically home to a lot of butchers’ shops, Rue des Bouchers.
- Watch an opera at the Royal Theatre of the Mint.
- See beautiful public art in the little streets and alleys that directs to the glittering Grand Place.
- Rediscover the child in you at the Belgian Comic Strip Center.
- Learn more about the history of the city and see a range of historic exhibitions at Brussels City Museum, contained inside the King’s House.
- Wonder at the luminous guild hall buildings around the Grand Place and take a lot of pictures of the wonderful Gothic Town Hall building.
- Window shop at the lavish and profligate Royal Galleries of Saint-Hubert; one classiest and richest shopping arcade in Europe.
The Marolles Neighborhood
If you are looking where to stay in Europe on a budget, then this neighborhood would be a nice place for you. By staying here, you can experience local vibe and see more of Brussels’ working class side.
An area that is becoming more and more popular among tourists, The Marolles is experiencing redevelopment, which brings trendy establishments to the area. You can also find a place to spend your night in for cheap here while not being too far from points of interests.
Things to do here
- Be amazed at the remarkable and magnificent Palace of Justice.
- Delight in a modern show at the refurbished Les Brigittines chapel.
- Seek good deals at the flea market of Vieux Marché, held daily at Jeu de Balle Place.
- Get on the Marolles elevator that connects between the two levels of the area.
- Go to the Atelier des Tanneurs organic market and shop for the freshest produce.
- Try out some of the best global cuisines at many specialty restaurants in the neighborhood.
- Travel back to time by visiting Porte de Hal, which is a fairytale-like gateway that what used to be a part of the fortifications of the city and is now a museum that tells history.
- Wander through the residential neighborhood and see how locals live.
- Check out one of the first churches that were built in
- Brussels, Notre-Dame de la Chapelle, and admire its outstanding frontage and interiors.
- Stroll around Brussels’ longest street: Rue Haute.
Watch the sun go down from the big Poelaert Square.
Saint Gery Neighborhood
The neighborhood of Saint Gery used to be an island in the River Senne. But today, you no longer need to cross any river; the river is now covered up and Saint Gery is completely connected in the whole city.
This separation meant that it used to be a peaceful place, but it has turned to carry one of the hippest nightlife destinations in the city.
The street bars and cafes are particularly popular during the warmer season, even though you will find a lot of options where to eat and party.
Things to do here
- Enjoy the local music scene by attending live music events.
Wander along Anspach Boulevard and see how the rich upper class in Belgium lived before.
- Enjoy a meal in the diverse restaurants, with cuisines from all over the world served in beautiful locations.
- Check out the modern statue of the urinating dogs – Manneken Pis, Zinneke Pis, and Jeanneke Pis.
- Be amazed at the striking Renaissance-style Halles Saint Gery building, an old market that has been renovated to include a club and café-bar.
- Take a picture of the historic fountain within Halles Saint Gery, constructed on the spot where a church used to stand.
Enjoy the modern art at Chartreux Center of Contemporary Art.
- Check out the beauty of Sainte Catherine Cathedral.
While you can’t find a hostel in Saint Gery, you can find hotels that will put you close to the places you would want to be.
Ixelles is an artsy and chic neighborhood with a great range of restaurants, shops, bars, and other attractions. Parks, lakes, and forests are all easily accessible and the area is near public transportations. It is our winner in terms of the best neighborhood for families in Brussels.
Top Things to do here
- See the amazing art at Musée d’Ixelles.
- Soak up to nature and relax at The Tenbosch Park.
- Hang out and deed the ducks swimming at Étangs d’Ixelles’ lakes.
- Enjoy the serenity at the magnificent gardens and buildings of Abbaye de la Cambre.
- Buy designer goodies in many high-class stores in Ixelles.
Visit Audrey Hepburn childhood’s house.
- Enjoy a cold drink in any of the hip bars around Place Fernand Coq.
- Walk around the farmers’ market every Wednesday at Chatelain Square.
- Wander through the Congolese quarter.
- Enjoy watching a movie in The Flagey building.
Brussels is a spectacular city to explore, and because it is centrally located, it makes for an amazing add-on to your Euro-trip itinerary. And we hope that we don’t only help you in deciding where to stay in Brussels but we also what to do while you are there!
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