Arrondissement Brussel-Hoofdstad

Here you’ll find travel reports about Arrondissement Brussel-Hoofdstad. Discover travel destinations in Belgium of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

117 travelers at this place:

  • Day1

    Manneken Pis

    August 22, 2017 in Belgium

    Zwar nur eine Kopie und auch irgendwie nur ein pinkelnder Junge, trotzdem eines der Wahrzeichen Brüssels und somit ein Muss 😄 von seinen mittlerweile über 950 Kostümen hatte der Manneken auch eins an. Es gibt sogar eine Ausstellung, in der ein Teil seiner Kostüme präsentiert werden - verrückt 😂 Vorher waren wir noch auf dem Grand Place 😊

  • Day16

    Yet another parade when I enter a new city! This is starting to be a thing. Found out its called the Zinneke Parade and it went down the street where I am staying and continued to the Grand Place, where the floats and peeps hung out to continue the reveling. The parade theme was ILLEGAL. A cultural event that uses residents along with artists that work together to build bridges between all cultures. A very enthusiastic group!Read more

  • Day17


    May 13 in Belgium

    Just scratched the surface but glad that I visited Brussels. Hotel La Legend was perfect, location stupid close to the train station and the Grand Place a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Took a walking tour and would have never found the bar that was tucked away down an alley. It boasts a Guinness book record for most varieties of beer sold in a week, 2000 of them. They have since reduced that to 100, such restraint. Tried my first Belgian chocolate, Galler, a local confectioner that does not export, yum. I found the city to be easier to navigate than Bruges, I could not pull it together there, even with my handy dandy compass. Final word on Belgium, they like to celebrate!Read more

  • Day475

    Brussels with Beth & Rich, Day 2

    October 14, 2017 in Belgium

    We'd dropped off to the sound of car stereos and Vicky had been ill in the night, possibly from a dodgy mussel. The pavement was littered with fag ends and soda siphon gas canisters (the new drug of choice?)

    However, none of this had dampened our enthusiasm for the fun filled day ahead of us. The bus system was efficient (€2.50 for an hour's travelling) and we were soon meeting Beth and Richard at one of the tables outside Paul's bakery.

    We set out towards the European Parliament. It would be closed today but we still wanted to see the buildings. It was a couple of kilometres away and we enjoyed taking in the sights along the route. Especially when we saw the most amazing cookshop that we ended up losing ourselves in for almost an hour! We even found a wraught iron book stand displaying the 'Netherton Foundry' emblem, from our home town! Will and Beth love to cook and bake, Vicky and Richard love to eat their creations, so it was time well spent!

    The weather was extraordinarily warm for mid October and continuing on our uphill journey towards the European Parliament we become hot and tired, so picnic benches belonging to a hipster café in the park were a very welcome sight. We sipped on homemade lemonade and iced tea, under the dappled shade of trees, being serenaded by a couple of musicians playing jazz style music - perfect!

    Carrying on towards Parliament along busy roads, we passed a mix of old and new buildings, stone fronted houses with high windows where you could imagine with a horse and carriage waiting outside, were intermixed with glass fronted office blocks. There was a real contrast, but the thing they had in common was the layer of grime covering their facades.

    By the time we reached the EU neighbourhood we were ready for lunch, so settled ourselves down for Belgian fries and Stella Artois Juliper at one of the few pubs that was open. Feeling re-energised we went to have a look at the impressive glass fronted buildings in which a large part of the UK's future would be decided. (We later found out Theresa May was meeting Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels the day after we were due to leave).

    Navigating the train network, we travelled back to the city centre where Vicky went back to care for Poppy while Will, Beth & Rich went for waffles - piled with cream, strawberries, banana. Afterwards, we all met at a bar on the Grand Place where we sat outside and tasted some more Belgian beer! - is there a trend beginning to emerge here? A view of the stunning square wasn't the only interesting sight this pub offered, a trip to the men's toilets made Will, then Richard stop in their tracks -see the photo!

    Being Saturday, it was the day before Beth's birthday and she'd chosen a nice restaurant (ABrussel), with modern, typically Belgian dishes, for the evening meal. It was a cosy place with an open kitchen for us to see the food being prepared. This 'Kitchen Theatre' turned out to be better than if dedicated entertainment had been hired! The food was excellent but the organisation and communication between the chef and waiters left something to be desired. We spoke English because English was spoken to us but a mix up meant we were each presented with beef that was well done, not rare. When Will told the chef he shrugged in a slightly confrontational manner and grunted as if to say 'yeah, so?' We got what we wanted in the end and had a great evening, but apologies and discounts were dolled out to many diners as they were leaving.

    To round up the night we stopped for a glass of bubbly at Beubles; a shabby chic champagne bar with old theatre armchairs on coasters as outdoor seating. It was a very enjoyable indulgence to sit and sip whilst taking in the sights and sounds of the European capital on a warm October night!
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  • Day53

    Our last stop in Europe! Brussels!

    October 13, 2017 in Belgium

    Finally had a Belgium waffle.
    Time to chill and do some research and catch up on sleep.
    Then dinner time at the funniest restaurant name we saw today.

    I will not miss having to pay for water and toilets.

    I will miss the little bread rolls to begin your meal, because I'm usually starving.

    And no, you have not seen me with a drink in my hand for a while. I can barely swallow as my throat is razor blades. Got some throat numbing spray stuff. Weird to use.Read more

  • Day474

    Brussels with Beth & Richard!

    October 13, 2017 in Belgium

    We were so excited! Not because we were about to spend 2 days in Brussels, the European capital city, but because we were going to see Will's daughter Beth and our son in law Richard!

    Not having seen them for more than 15 months, we wanted to spend as much time with them as possible and so we went to pick them up at Brussels airport- something easier said than done in a large camper van. After studying the guidance, we knew there was no pick up point and all of the short stay car parks had height restrictions. We headed for the open air car park P4 but found that bollards at its entrance were placed too close together for us to get through. We couldn't stop anywhere else so drove around while Beth and Rich, unable to see any sign of the supposed shuttle bus, made their way to the car park on foot.

    We were all a little flustered when we finally met, but it was nonetheless wonderful to see them again. After navigating a complicated set of motorways we stopped for lunch in a car park surrounded by autumn trees. After proper hugs it wasn't long before we relaxed into each other's company as if we'd not spent the last 15 months away.

    It was Friday afternoon and Brussels city centre lived up to its reputation as one of the most congested in Europe. At least the gridlocked roads gave us an opportunity for some sight seeing as we passed a modern glass fronted European Commission building and a huge ornate stone arch with fountains as we drove in to drop Beth & Richard off at their hotel.

    It was finding our overnight parking when the fun really began! There was no official van parking within easy reach of the centre and the Youth Hostel that allowed vans to stay in their car park had big event on. We'd found a garage that rented out parking spots for camper vans through ShareMyPark website and exchanged several emails to reserve our spot. On approaching the residential area we saw there were massive roadworks whose diversions took us the wrong way along one way streets. After driving around in circles (for the second time that day) and becoming increasingly stressed we turned down a blocked off road where we saw the large green and blue garage door that we were due to park behind... on the other side of the blockade, in the middle of the road works, with an unsurfaced road outside it. We got the feeling this wasn't going to work out and the friendly loc residents confirmed there was no way in, before 'helping' Vicky do a 3 point turn, arms waving everywhere with good natured thumbs up.

    Although still stressful, the drive to the residential street Will had found on Park4Night got easier the further we drove from the centre. We parked at the top of a narrow cobbled U shaped road between a park and a communal food and medicinal plant garden. It was on a slant but away from traffic flow and wonderful for Poppy. Downloading a Brussels Transport app, we found the nearest bus stop and discovered there were very frequent buses to the city centre, just a few hundred metres from the hotel. It wasn't what we'd planned but at just €9 for a full day's parking we'd found a workable solution 2.5 hours after setting off from lunch!

    It was Beth's birthday weekend and they had booked a nice hotel. We met Richard downstairs and after climbing the polished stone spiral staircase with hardwood banister, rang the doorbell to their suite. We were all blown away by its grandeur, the old wooden beams and furniture, original paintings, ornate blue pottery urns and plates. We enjoyed lounging on the sofa and armchairs with a drink before heading out in search of the traditional Belgian moules-frites. By this time it was dark and gravitating towards a narrow cobbled alley (Rue de Bouchers) lined with eateries selling our desired dish we were literally, grabbed from left and right by people trying to persuade us (in English) to eat with them. We extricated ourselves and found a slightly quieter corner restaurant called Au Coin Gourmand where the staff didn't seem quite so desperate and Richard assured us the Trip Advisor rating was higher than 2/5! Choosing from the set menu, we ate our moules-frites along with starters and a desert of crepe at an outdoor table accompanied by a charismatic cat with a stump of a tail. The atmosphere was light hearted and fun and to chocolatier Beth's delight we were seated opposite Elisabeth's chocolate shop!

    After Beth and Richard had bought waffles from Elisabeth's, we wandered along the lively streets until Beth spotted an interesting and brightly lit building at the end of a side street. Rounding the corner, we discovered it was part of Grand Place, reputedly the most beautiful square in Europe. We just stopped and stared, we were so taken aback. All around us were grand old buildings, tastefully lit, some with gilt detail shining out from their facades. It was one of the most complete squares we can remeber seeing, the imposing Hotel de Ville drawing our eye as a focal point.

    Rounding the night off with a glass of wine in the hotel suite, we caught the bus back to the van, which we were relieved to find undisturbed, despite the number of cars parked nearby emitting loud 'boom boom' music and the giggles and shrieks of late night revellers in the park.

    Although we'd faced difficulties taking the van into Brussels, we'd had the best evening in a long while and were looking forward to a full day in the city with Beth and Richard tomorrow!
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  • Day54

    Belgium chocolate time

    October 14, 2017 in Belgium

    Let's start the day with a chocolate making class!
    Made some pralines & mendiants and enjoyed real hit chocolate.
    Look at that view for lunch! Tried out the must have' s in Brussels of mussels and shrimp croquets.
    A casual afternoon browsing the chocolate shops.
    Having a nibbles dinner 😊
    Managed to have one plastic cup of a wine I've been carrying around for about a week.
    Hopefully we manage to get a better sleep tonight.Read more

  • Day55

    Silver balls of Brussels

    October 15, 2017 in Belgium

    Found the silver balls of Brussels!
    They're Atomium which forms the shape of a unit cell of an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times. 
    Idea was from using atomic power for peace instead of war.
    Was built after the war for a world fair but have stayed in place ever since.
    Some really good art exhibitions.
    Found a mini Europe to visit.
    Had a Sunday movie night.

You might also know this place by the following names:

Arrondissement Brussel-Hoofdstad, Arrondissement de Bruxelles-Capitale, Brussels Gewest

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