10 reasons to go to Belgium NOW!
Brussels and French-speaking Wallonia can always be fun and affordable; consider these special rates and packages: Specials
Stretch your Imagination: Opening of New Magritte Museum
The New Magritte Museum is now open in Brussels. The museum holds 200 works of surrealist painter Rene Magritte, the largest collection in the world of his works, including archival material, letters, photographs and drawings. Hours: Tuesdays to Sundays, 9.30am - 5pm, late night Wednesday until 8pm.
Opening of New Hergé Museum
Just a short train ride away from Brussels and designed by acclaimed French architect Christian de Portzamparc, the New Hergé Museum is now open in Louvain-la-Neuve, a university town worth a detour. Celebrating the work of Tintin’s creator, the Hergé Museum marks the first public exhibition of the artist’s monumental body of work.
New Rail Station in Liège by architect Santiago Calatrava
The new Liège-Guillemins Station was designed by the great and famous Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava. This station links Liège to other great European cities such as Holland and Cologne. Just under an hour from Brussels, Liège is known as the “Fiery city” and home to many great museums, including the new Curtius Museum.
Brussels: La Grand’ Place, a Happening Place
In the center of the city, the centuries-old Grand’ Place houses markets, the Hotel de Ville, cafes, festivals, museums and shops. Don’t miss the Brussels Jazz Marathon in May, and come August, Grand’ Place turns into a flowering wonderland during the three-day Tapis de Fleurs. Be sure not to miss the Belgian Beer Weekend in September.
In the land where the saxophone was invented, it’s no wonder the music is an integral part of Belgian daily life. May in Brussels includes the Brussels Jazz Marathon and the Nuits Botanique Festival. In Namur, the Verdure Rock Festival is held under the stars. Classical music is always in the air; orchestras and soloists perform in castles, abbeys and churches during the Festival of Wallonia held from June to October. Click for more.
Boutique Hotels, the Inn thing in Brussels
Business and leisure travelers who favor the stylish and intimate experience of a boutique hotel stay are going to feel even more at home this year in Brussels. The fashion rooms at The Royal Windsor and Belgium’s first Design Hotel, The Dominican are stylish stays. For a more artsy inn, the downtown Hotel Bloom and the White Hotel are furnished with original art pieces. Moreover, the trendy Be Manos is a chic stay convenient for travelers from London and Paris. Find a complete listing of Brussels hotels and B&Bs.
A Market for all Seasons and Christmas!
All year-round Belgium is bustling with markets of all kinds. All Belgian towns hold special flea markets. In Brussels every Saturday and Sunday, you can visit the Antique market at the Place du Grand Sablon. For the real antique aficionados, visit the Bruneaf Market in March, the Brafa in January, and the Baaf in June. Flea markets are also popular such as La Batte, Sundays in Liège. Annually, during the month of December, Belgium holds special Christmas markets in Brussels and throughout French-speaking Belgium.
Beyond Brussels is a world of landscapes, castles, stone-built villages, gourmet restaurants, and carnivals. Collectively, these and many more superlatives are found in Wallonia, the southern French-speaking region of Belgium. For a quick getaway, visit scenic Namur, the Citadel in Dinant,the stunningly beautiful Caves of Han the castles of Bouillon, historic Bastogne, relaxing Spa , the biggest city in French- speaking Belgium, Liège, or the smallest, Durbuy, and for the architecture lovers, the Notre Dame Cathedral of Tournai is a must-see.
Young & Hip in Belgium
For tips on the Brussels nightlife, cheap eats and great youth hostels, visit Brusselsmania.