5 Essential Places to See in Belgium
There are lots of interesting places to see in Belgium. Their chocolate, beer and chips are all very good. But the country has very interesting corners: from modern cities like Brussels to flirty historic centers that will take you to the medieval period. In this post we tell you 5 essential places to see in Belgium to inspire you when organizing your trip.
- Bruges and its picturesque canals
Bruges is one of the most interesting cities to see in Belgium. If you have 2, 3 or 4 days in the country, you cannot leave without knowing this Belgian jewel. Its old town, full of canals, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In fact, along with other cities such as Amsterdam, Hamburg and St. Petersburg, it is called the Venice of the North. You can visit Bruges in one day easily. Although if you have the opportunity to spend a night there, you will not regret it. During the day it is very attractive, but when the sun goes down, the lights come on and the streets empty, it is magical. There is no other word to describe it.
Located just 20 minutes by train from Bruges, Ghent is another of the Belgian jewels. Ghent has an enviable history. Its golden period was in the Middle Ages, when it became one of the most powerful cities in Europe. You can see that easily by looking at its buildings: with spectacular merchant houses and churches. Although the historic center of Ghent is restored, it is one of the most interesting places to see in Belgium. Walking through its cobbled streets is like moving back to the Middle Ages. You will not lack things to do in Ghent. But above all, don’t forget to visit Gravensteen Castle, the most beautiful in Belgium!
Brussels is the capital of Belgium. It houses the main airport of the country, so you are very likely to pass through the Belgian capital at some time or another. Although it does not have as much charm as the cities mentioned above, we believe that it could not be missing in this list of the essential places to see in Belgium. There are a lot of things to do in Brussels. The Grand Place, which is a World Heritage Site, is one of the most beautiful squares in Europe. Guild buildings add a unique touch. In addition the city also houses the famous Manneken Pis or the Atomium, two of the most interesting monuments to see in Belgium. Do not forget to visit the Royal Palace or the seat of the European Parliament either.
- The Lion Hill and the Waterloo Memorial
The Battle of Waterloo was one of the most important in the history of the European continent. There the French Empire faced against the English troops. It marked the end of the French Empire and forced Napoleon into exile on the island of Santa Elena, where he ended up dying 6 years later. Among other things you can climb the hill of the Lion. It is an artificial hill from where you can perfectly see the fields where the battle took place in 1815. You will also visit the Memorial 1815, where you can watch a 3D movie about the battle to learn. Without a doubt, one of the most interesting monuments to see in Belgium.
Known as Mechelen in the local language, it has nothing to envy its neighbors. It is also much quieter than Bruges! It is halfway between Brussels and Antwerp. So if you plan to visit one of the two cities, we recommend you get away one day to get to know it. The main icon of Mechelen is the cathedral of St. Rumbold. It dates from the thirteenth century and is spectacular. But right next to it is the San Rumbold Tower. From above you can enjoy spectacular views of Mechelen and the surroundings. It is one of the most underrated cities to see in Belgium, so don’t miss it!