I have to confess that the Belgian capital was not in my plans for visit. A mistake I did in train’s route, costed me to miss my flight back home! So, I found myself spending the night in Brussels, a week before Christmas. Though I didn’t visit as much places as the city has to offer, but whatever I found time to see, I really enjoyed it! Sometimes the unexpected things are more exciting and beautiful than the scheduled. With no plan, no map, and no idea where I was going, I just started walking around the streets to get into the holiday mood.
Grand Place: The heart of the capital
The most memorable landmark and prettiest spot in Brussels! Remarkable guildhall that you won’t stop staring not even a second. The city hall with the 96-meter tower and the Brussels city museum in King’s house, were the sights that gained my interest. In the middle of the square, a large Christmas tree was placed, gifted from Slovenia, and next to it there was a representation of the Jesus’s birth in a barn. All these compose the festive atmosphere that prevailed in the square that night.
The best moment of the night was the Christmas light show! It’s an unbelievable 360° view with dancing lights which is accompanied by a music mash-up from a known DJ. It starts at 5 pm until 10 pm, every half an hour for a 20 minutes duration. Totally recommend it!It’σ worth the whole cold that you feel standing there every half an hour to enjoy this masterpiece of lights. I personally watched it several times. In the last show I was sitting on a bench, holding a beer admiring for the last time that spectacular view. You will not see this in any other European city, so “Christmas lights” show is a must-see for all travelers on holiday season.
Manneken Pis: The cutest sight
Manneken Pis (little pee man) is a small bronze fountain statue from the 17th century. It is one of the first attractions you hear that you must see upon arrival in Brussels. It’s close to Grand Place so I thought while I was wandering around, I should go and see this famous status. I’ve read somewhere that Belgians use this statue in a playful annual calendar celebration. The little man changes an outfit or its decoration according to every occasion. In previous years, in holiday season they dressed it as a Santa but this year remained nude as it is with Christmas garland and lights around it. A lot of tourists take the advantage of its little size and try to make funny and playful poses with it.
Galeries Royales Saint – Hubert:
This gallery is a glazed shopping arcade of 19th century and is a home to lots of luxury boutiques, clock-makers, art galleries and chocolate shops. Do you know that in the past you had to pay to get into the the Gallery? Well fortunately for us, nowadays you can enter free to this lovely arcade for a stroll or just to shop. I went there to admire the shop’s windows and of course to try and buy the famous and delicious Belgian chocolates. And oh yes, I was thrilled by the decoration that they did in all shops. I felt the Christmas spirit to the maximum, except the too much crowd there, and also I had the chance to enjoy Christmas carols from a small-group choir. That choir was the icing on the cake! Christmas cake in this case…. 🙂 I tried the delicious chocolates of “La Belgique Gourmande” but I prefered to buy from Leonidas chocolates because the prices were not so expensive for my pocket.
For the limited time I had, I think I visited many of the most famous spots on Brussels and I got plenty of Christmas magic that the city has to offer. I really enjoyed my time a lot! Next time Brussels, I promise you I’ll come back and stay more!