Flemish Brabant Province

Here you’ll find travel reports about Flemish Brabant Province. Discover travel destinations in Belgium of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

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  • Day8

    Atomium and Plasticarium

    July 9 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

    Amazing morning at the Atomarium built for the 1958 World Expo.
    Mind blowing visual exhibition inside called “ A circular journey”- could have spent hours watching.
    Beat any expectations.
    The design museum aka plasticarium was full of super cool furniture and domestic items.
    All of this followed by the best salad lunch in a little cafe up the road from our accommodation.Read more

  • Day472


    October 11, 2017 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    We wanted to get near Brussels for when Beth and Richard arrived in a few days time, so we travelled quite a long way in a north westerly direction today. The motorway cut through expanses of forest and its viaducts gave us a bird's eye view of the milticoloured tree tops far below.

    After a while the woodland was replaced by a string of towns and industrial complexes. Quite suddenly the language of signs changed from French to Dutch. We'd read that unlike in easy going multilingual Luxembourg, we needed to be careful what language we used in Belgium. Wallonia, the region we first entered speaks French, Flanders in the North speaks Flemish, there are enclaves in the East that speak German and Brussels speaks a mix of Dutch and French. According to the guidebook, what language a Belgian speaks is strongly linked to their cultural identity and it would be considered insensitive to try to talk to someone from Flanders in French. Apparently English is widley spoken and considered quite neautral.

    As we travelled through a suburb of the sprawling metropolis of St Truidans we entered a highstreet that will be remembered as the highstreet from hell. The windows of a number of shops were bare apart from a chair or two. These shops displayed a sign that translated as 'Service on Demand'. We passed another similar window with a mannequin wearing a short two tone leather dress and appeared to be reading something on a high round table. It is curious how our minds try to normalise what we see. It was only when we passed another and saw a woman in just her bra and knickers that the penny dropped. There were no mannequins. The shops were selling the women. There were literally dozens of windows lining this otherwise normal highstreet, where one or two women sat or stood in skimpy dresses or underwear, advertising themselves. It shocked and upset us. Organised prostitution is illegal in Belgium but according to Wikipedia, there are some areas in which it is tolerated. We have heard the arguements about women being free to do what they want with their bodies and that prostitution out in the open is a lot safer than when it is driven underground. We just couldn't get away from our emotional reaction that these women were being taken advantage of, objectified in the worst possible way, reduced to the number of euros someone would pay for them, perhaps being forced into it by sick minded criminals who held some threat over them. When you can go shopping for women, it changes the way women are viewed and therefore their potential as individuals. Feeling powerless to do anything about it, we just wanted to get away from there as quickly as we could.

    We continued with other stressed drivers, along run-down urban corridors, past casinos and seemingly relentless advertising billboards. Needing food, we pulled up at a supermarket. It looked like a warehouse from the outside and was disconcerting when we entered because it was layed out more like a Booker or Macro wholesalers than a conventional supermarket. It had a dingy air and sets of plastic steps were scattered here and there for you to access the items on the high shelves. The prostitute shops had cast a dark cloud over us and Vicky's anxiety was running high. She returned to the van but was soon followed by Will who had got to the checkout and noticed he didn't have his wallet. After a highly stressed 5 minutes of searching and thinking he'd dropped it in the shop, Vicky found that Poppy was hiding the missing wallet underneath her. It must have slipped between the front seats when Will was trying to put it in his bag. Oh the relief!

    On the bright side the shop had an excellent range of quality products and the cashier spoke good English. On the down side the machine didn't accept Will's credit card. Luckily we were able to pay with cash and get on with trying to find somewhere to stay. We'd seen loads of fritteries and frituurs since arriving in Belgium but the ones we'd been able to access had all been closed. Will was gasping for a taste of this famous Belgian food so when we saw a shop with nearby parking we pulled over and he had his fill of takeaway frites, exclaiming they were the best he'd ever tasted!

    We think wildcamping is allowed in Belgium but aren't yet sure so we stuck to the safe side and stayed at an official Aire in Aarschot at one end of an 800 place car park. It wasn't a scenic spot, looking onto a brick built swimming pool and near a busy highway, but it was free, had emptying facilities, free electricity. There was grass around it and it backed on to a riverside walk.

    The town centre wasn't far away and Will went to explore that afternoon, finding a number of useful shops and a Pop-up FairTrade café. In the morning Vicky walked along the bank of the slow moving river at sunrise. Thankfully on the opposite side to the large school into which hundreds of bicycles amd scooters were zipping. Later, we discovered not one, but two large markets in town, selling a whole range of delectable foods that the stall holders were happy for us to try. We filled our bag with olives, crystalised ginger, camomile and ewe's cheese. Many stalls sold non food items too and Vicky picked up some golden yarn she'd been looking out for, in preparation for Christmas.

    Later Will took the tandem along the river towpath and Vicky caught up with her 'to do' list. Thanks to the facility to get away along the waterside and the friendly market buzz we were feeling altogether a lot better about our stay in Belgium than had done when we arrived.
    Read more

  • Day19

    Aldi toidupood

    July 15 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Tahtsime tegelt minna Timmermansi õlletehase tuurile, sest Belgia on tuntud enda õlu poolest, aga jõudsime kahjuks liiga hilja kohale ja kõik oli juba kinni.

    Kuna meil söögipoolis oli otsakorral, siis läksime esimesse poodi mis Brüsseli teepeal jäi. Selleks osutus väiksemapoolne pood nimega Aldi. Meid Kadriga hämmastas kui odavad hinnad siin poes olid. Enne seda olime Prantsusmaal kus polnud küll röögatult kallis, aga kallim kui Eestis ikka. Siin Brüsseli külje all aga tundub, et on toidud Eesti hindadega või isegi odavamad. Vorst 1.5€, sai 0.40€, salat ja muu odavam kui Eestis. Alkohol märkimisväärselt odavam kui Eestis.Read more

  • Day17

    A Love Supreme follwed by a late supper

    September 20 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    After Geertje met up with us and we had a drink, we headed off to Forest via metro and tram and a dance performance put on by the KAAI Theater that she works for. In ”A Love Supreme”, John Coltrane and his musicians start from blues based structures and construct a completely free improvisation that continuously breaks new ground. In 2005, choreographers Salva Sanchis and Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker created a quartet set to Coltrane’s music. His jazz is renowned for its exploration of the tension between tonal and rhythmic complexity and simplicity. This is translated literally in the dance: improvisation and composition interweave until they fuse completely. In 2017, Sanchis and De Keersmaeker adapted A Love Supreme with four young, male dancers. The performance was great, and the dancers were superb and enjoyed by all.

    Following the performance, with the dancers getting at least 4 curtain calls, we made our way back on public transport to the city centre and went in search of a late dinner. We first tried a favourite Italian place that they like, which was close to where Lisa, their daughter used to live, but the chef said no he was finished for the night. We then tried a traditional Brussels restaurant Le Pré Salé on rue de Flandre, and we had success, but had to chose our meals in one minute or the kitchen would be closed.

    We were very decisive - Geertje and I had Moules Frit, Gui had Lapin (rabbit), and Ian meatballs, and of course we washed this down with a bottle of red! The food and the company was lovely and we laughed a lot .

    We then headed back to our apartment, and Gui and Geertje caught the subway to Stockel, and then drove the rest of the way. Ian was feeling quite tired after 2 fairly late nights, and so headed off to bed immediately, whereas I stayed up to work on my blog a little more.
    Read more

  • Day26

    Lunch with Family

    July 20, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

    Today we have been invited to have lunch at Gui and Geertje’s. We were due there at 12.30 pm but unfortunately, due to a big car accident, we again had to divert and take a different way to their place. My aunt Paulette and their daughter Lisa also attended, which was lovely. We had drinks out in the garden with nibbles, and then a Nigella Lawson pasta for lunch. We then had a traditional Belgian dessert - Cheese Tart - which was delicious. It was lovely to catch up with Gui and Geertje, as this was the only opportunity as they head off on holidays tomorrow. Lisa said she might be interested in travelling to Australia, so hopefully she will come in the next couple of years. Lisa has recently returned from 7 months in South America, so I think she has the travel bug like her younger brother Rob. We had a lovely afternoon, but it was all over too quickly - it was so nice to catch up with family.Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Provincie Vlaams-Brabant, Provinz Flämisch-Brabant, Flemish Brabant Province, Brabante Flamenco, Brabant-Flamand, Brabante Flamengo

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