Belgium My Travelz

Spending 36 Hours in Brussels, Belgium

Honestly I am not even sure it was 36 hours. It was somewhere around that give or take, since I took a day trip to Bruges. For all intensive purposes I will just say 36. Brussels is a beautiful city with plenty to see. Per usual, I was able to cram a lot into a short amount of time. So if you have a little bit of time to explore this city or just want some ideas of what there is to do, this is for you!

Upon arrival to Brussels, we took a taxi to the hotel. It was rainy and gloomy out. The taxi driver was really nice giving us information and pointing out different sites. We got to our hotel, Ibis, which was in a great location. One of the many parts of the city, Grand Place was a couple of minutes away. I also quickly found out the train station was very close by as well.

Ibis Hotel ©2017 HollyDayz
1 of 2 beds ©2017 HollyDayz

It was our first time at an Ibis Hotel. It was nice, but very bare minimum and in typical European fashion the room was small. It was nothing luxurious, but it was clean, safe, and comfortable. My favorite part of the hotel was their breakfast. Of course Belgium is known for their waffles, so I was able to make my own at the hotel.  There were a lot of healthy and organic choices to choose from too.

Hotel Breakfast ©2017 HollyDayz

After taking a little nap and resting up a bit, we headed to Grand Place to meet up with a tour. Sandemans is great free tour. We took a tour with them in Prague and liked it. I like taking walking tours. Great way to walk around the city and actually know what you are looking at. There were plenty of people taking photos, laying on the ground, and grabbing food in Grand Place. Finding the tour group was a breeze though, recognizable by their red umbrellas.

Grand Place ©2017 HollyDayz

Of course since we met up at Grand Place that is where the tour started. Every 2 years there is a giant flower carpet there. Unfortunately this wasn’t one of those times. Grand Place is the central square that has guild houses and City Hall amongst other things. It is also a UNSECO World Heritage Site.

Mannekin-Pis ©2017 HollyDayz

We walked around some more seeing a bunch of comic strip art. Then we were taken to Mannekin-Pis, a statue of a little boy peeing. Apparently there is also a statue around of a little girl squatting.  Our tour guide informed us this was the biggest disappointment, when you actually see it and he was right. The statue was so tiny. That day he was naked, but the statue apparently has over 900 outfits and many can be seen in a museum. Believe it or not the statue has been around since the 15th century.

Rainbow Crosswalk ©2017 HollyDayz

Brussels is also very LGBTQ friendly. They have a Pride parade and more. There is also a very cool rainbow cross walk not too far away from Grand Place, which I believe is in what is known as Rainbow Quarter, was another stop on the tour. There are a ton of bars, clubs, and nightlife happening there.

Comic Strip in Rainbow Quarter ©2017 HollyDayz

The other thing I really liked was there was comic strips all over the city. You just had to look around and find them or the street art. I didn’t find them all just a handful. They are pretty cool though and I was excited every time I did locate one.

Rin Tintin Comic Strip ©2017 HollyDayz

We also walked around a couple of parks. Brussels is said to be one of the greenest capitals in Europe. We did a lot more walking around. The tour was about 2 1/2 hours long. By then we were pretty tired and glad it was almost over. Unfortunately right before it ended my camera dropped on the ground and broke. So I had to use my phone for the rest of the trip. I tried to get it fixed at a camera store, but that didn’t work out.

Royal Palace of Brussels ©2017 HollyDayz
©2017 HollyDayz

After resting up at the hotel a bit we headed out to grab some dinner. Per usual I asked a local for a recommendation. This local was from the front desk of the hotel. So we walked back over to Grand Place to eat. The place was called Restaurant T Kelderke. I ordered some salmon, salad, and fries. If you didn’t know fries originated in Belgium. From taking the tour I learned that fries are cooked in beef fat.

Dinner ©2017 HollyDayz
Belgium Fries ©2017 HollyDayz
Belgium Beer ©2017 HollyDayz

The food was good. Belgium is also known for its beer. The beer suggested to me was OK. After dinner we walked around  a bit and of course I wanted to try a Belgium waffle. I was disappointed in the first one I had. I had gotten it covered with whipped cream and chocolate. It was so hard my plastic fork broke. It didn’t taste that great.

First Belgium Waffle ©2017 HollyDayz

We walked around a bit more before heading back to the hotel to kick back and relax. It was a long tiring day with the weather changing from rain, to chilly, to hot, back to chilly. We were planning to head to Bruges the following day so definitely wanted to rest up. Of course when we got back from Bruges we walked around in Brussels some more.

DanDoy ©2017 HollyDayz

There were tons of souvenir shops near the hotel that we stopped in. I also wanted to give the Belgium waffles another shot. Once again I went to the front desk to ask for a recommendation of the best place to get a waffle in the area. She recommended DanDoy. Once I arrived, I realized the tour guide had also recommended this place as well. Belgians eat their waffles simply with powered sugar on it. It was delicious.

DanDoy Waffle ©2017 HollyDayz

After consuming a much better waffle, I stopped to get some chocolate of course because they are also well-known for their chocolate. I had to bring some back with me. It was fun walking around some more. Even heard someone playing a clarinet, playing the Game of Thrones theme song.

One of the many chocolate stores ©2017 HollyDayz

Brussels was a lot of fun. The people were nice, the food, was good, and I made sure to try everything they are known for. When you visit you have to check out the chocolate, beer, fries, waffles, and check out their lace. I would love to see how it is with the Christmas markets and the flower carpet one day. I would go back one again one day. Check out some Things To Know Before You Go!

Belgium Lace ©2017 HollyDayz

Have you ever been to Brussels?

 

23 Comments

  • Christopher

    Good looking food , I heard the beer is great

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      It was pretty good. I actually brought some back.

      Reply
  • Cheryl Howard

    I just spent a long weekend in Brussels and had sooo much fun! Seems you hit all the right spots and had all the best food. 🙂

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      I had a good time. It was very nice there. I am glad you enjoyed yourself as well.

      Reply
  • Aleah

    I love Ibis hotels, not just in Brussels, but in other cities, too. They’re affordable. I also took Sandemans walking tour in Madrid and Tel Aviv. I find their guides friendly and very knowledgeable. Did the guide take you to Manneken Pis’s sister? She’s quite well hidden. And both times I saw Manneken Pis, he was dressed up. LOL I love Brussels. Thanks for the trip to the memory lane!

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      I will have to check them out in other cities. They are affordable. I used Sandemans in Prague as well. They are really nice. No he didn’t take us to her, but I have heard about her. Oh nice what was he wearing when you saw him?

      Reply
  • Kiyoko

    So sorry to hear about your camera! But your pictures still look stunning. My favorite is probably the one of the royal palace! Also, I had no idea that fries originated in Belgium. Thanks for the fun fact!

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      Thank you so much. I was very upset about the camera. Yep, they sure did and the french just took the credit.

      Reply
  • melody pittman

    Hi Holly!! Looks like so much fun! I would love to go to Belgium some time, especially since you mention that UNESCO site. 😉 I’ve seen Ibis hotels all over but haven’t stayed at them.

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      I hope you get to visit soon. I have too, this is the first time I have actually stayed at one.

      Reply
  • yashajoy

    I look forward to visiting Brussels when we get to Europe next year. I’m particularly keen to check out the street art – and the waffles, of course… Thanks for your tips.

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      I am glad you will be going soon. The street art is pretty cool and all over the place.

      Reply
  • Peter Korchnak

    Brussels is cool if you’re willing to give it the time of day. I can’t say I love or even like Ibis hotels, but they are functional and will do in a pinch. Their main benefit: they make you want to go outside! Because waffles.

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      Yea, it is cool. Ibis was OK, it was pretty bare minimum that I know some of my friends would appreciate and others not all that much.

      Reply
  • Claudia Laroye

    Belgian fries are the absolute best, and the double-frying technique is the reason why. SO good. It’s worth spending more time in Brussels next time if you can, there is so much to see. The museums are just outstanding, and I love the Tintin store near the Grande Place.

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      Ahhh is that what it is? Good to know. Yea I am sure one day I will get back there.

      Reply
  • Christine

    I’ve never been in Brussels and my bf doesn’t want me to include it in our trip in Europe because I might not wanna leaaaave! Because chocolates lol. Thanks for this guide!

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      Awww that is a bad reason not to include it lol. Hopefully he changes his mind.

      Reply
  • Jessica

    I lived in Brussels for six years and one of the things I miss the most is the food! Thankfully you caught on about the waffles, funny enough the best waffles are found at the metro stations or in little trucks around the city.

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      I believe that about the waffles. I caught on quick with the waffles. I was saying to myself no this is touristy mess where is the good stuff.

      Reply
  • Agness of eTramping

    This is an ultimate travel guide for Brussels, Holly. Excellent suggestions to do in such a short time. When would be the best time of the year to go there?

    Reply
    • Holly Dayz

      Thank you so much. I guess it really depends what you want to do. I hear the Christmas Markets are amazing, but of course its going to be cold.

      Reply
  • Jose Harvey

    Brussels looks incredible and your photos are fantastic! I thought about stopping into the city during my European tour earlier this year but had to skip it this time around. Now, I’m a bit sad I did. The Grand Palace looks super beautiful and I always enjoy working with Sandemans! They offer great tours! It’s so awesome to learn that the destination is so LGBTQ friendly. Always nice to visit places where we an feel safe. And wow that waffle looked just delicious! It looks like you had a pretty fun 36 hours in Brussels! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

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