Discovering the Heart of Belgium: A Journey Through Brussels and Beyond

heart of belgium

Belgium, a country known for its rich history, stunning architecture, and, of course, delicious chocolates and waffles, offers a plethora of experiences for every type of traveler. At the heart of this vibrant nation lies Brussels, a city that seamlessly blends historical charm with modern dynamism. In this article, we’ll take you on a journey through Brussels, highlighting its must-see attractions, and then expand our exploration to the best cities to visit across Belgium. We’ll also share where to find the best waffles in Brussels and provide a list of free things to do in the city, ensuring your trip is both memorable and budget-friendly.

Brussels: A City of Endless Discoveries

Brussels, the capital city of Belgium, is a treasure trove of experiences waiting to be discovered. From the iconic Atomium to the historic Grand Place, the city is filled with attractions that tell the story of its rich cultural and political history. For those planning a visit, don’t miss the comprehensive guide: Best Things to See in Brussels, which covers all the top sights and hidden gems.Brussels is a city that seamlessly blends the old with the new, offering visitors a chance to explore ancient architecture alongside modern art installations. The city’s vibrant art scene is on full display at the Magritte Museum and the BOZAR, while history buffs can delve into the past at the Royal Museums of Fine Arts and the BELvue Museum.

Foodies will delight in the culinary delights of Brussels, with its famous waffles, chocolate, and beer. The city’s diverse dining scene offers everything from traditional Belgian cuisine to international flavors, making it a paradise for food lovers.

For those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, Brussels also offers beautiful parks and gardens, such as the Parc du Cinquantenaire and the Botanique. And for a taste of local life, a visit to the Marolles neighborhood’s flea market is a must.

With so much to see and do, a trip to Brussels promises to be an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re interested in history, art, food, or simply soaking up the city’s unique atmosphere, there’s something for everyone in this captivating capital. 

Embark on a Belgian City Adventure

Belgium may be small in size, but it’s packed with diverse cities each offering their unique charm and attractions. From the medieval streets of Bruges to the diamond district of Antwerp, there’s so much to explore beyond Brussels. Plan your city hopping adventure with this essential guide: Best Cities to Visit in Belgium, and experience the best of what Belgium has to offer.Discover the enchanting city of Bruges, often referred to as the “Venice of the North” due to its network of canals and well-preserved medieval architecture. Take a leisurely boat ride along the canals, visit the famous Belfry of Bruges, and indulge in some of the best chocolate in the world.

Head to Antwerp, the diamond capital of the world, where you can explore the stunning Cathedral of Our Lady and the iconic Antwerp Central Station. Don’t forget to visit the Diamond District and admire the exquisite craftsmanship of the city’s diamond merchants.

Ghent is another must-visit city in Belgium, known for its beautiful medieval buildings and vibrant cultural scene. Climb to the top of the Gravensteen Castle for panoramic views of the city, and explore the lively Graslei and Korenlei waterfront areas.

For a taste of the vibrant art scene, make sure to include a stop in Mechelen. This city is home to the impressive St. Rumbold’s Cathedral and the beautiful Grand Place, as well as a variety of museums showcasing everything from traditional Flemish art to contemporary works.

Finally, don’t miss out on the cosmopolitan city of Liege, with its lively markets, historic architecture, and rich culinary scene. Take a stroll along the Meuse River, visit the impressive Prince-Bishops’ Palace, and sample some of the local delicacies at one of the city’s many restaurants and cafes.

No matter which cities you choose to visit in Belgium, you’re sure to be captivated by the unique charm and rich history of each one. So pack your bags, lace up your walking shoes, and get ready to explore the best of Belgium’s diverse cities. 

Taste Belgium’s Signature Treat: The Waffle

No visit to Belgium would be complete without indulging in its signature treat: the waffle. Brussels, in particular, is renowned for its delicious variety of waffles, from the light and crispy Brussels waffle to the rich and dense Liège waffle. Find out where to get the best waffles in the city with this tasty guide: Best Waffles in Brussels – Belgium’s Signature Treat.When it comes to waffles, Brussels is the place to be. The city is filled with charming cafes and street vendors that offer a wide range of waffle options to satisfy any sweet tooth. Whether you prefer your waffle topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream or smothered in decadent chocolate sauce, you’ll find just what you’re looking for in Brussels.

One of the most popular spots to indulge in a delicious waffle is Maison Dandoy, a historic waffle house that has been serving up mouthwatering waffles since 1829. Their Brussels waffles are a must-try, with their light and airy texture and crispy exterior. Pair it with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate for the perfect midday treat.

For those who prefer a richer, more indulgent waffle, head to Gaufres & Waffles. This cozy cafe specializes in the Liège waffle, a smaller, denser waffle that is filled with pockets of caramelized sugar. It’s a truly decadent treat that is best enjoyed with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of warm chocolate sauce.

If you’re looking for a more unique waffle experience, be sure to visit Vitalgaufre. This innovative waffle house offers a variety of creative waffle toppings, from savory options like bacon and cheese to sweet combinations like Nutella and strawberries. It’s a great place to try something new and exciting in the world of waffles.

No matter where you go in Brussels, you’re sure to find a waffle that will leave your taste buds singing. So be sure to treat yourself to this delicious Belgian specialty during your visit to the city. 

Enjoy Brussels Without Breaking the Bank

Traveling on a budget? Brussels offers plenty of costless experiences that prove you don’t need to spend a lot to enjoy the city’s beauty and culture. From visiting museums on free admission days to exploring lush parks and gardens, there’s a wealth of activities to enjoy. Uncover these hidden treasures with: Free Things to Do in Brussels – A Treasure Trove of Costless Experiences.In addition to visiting museums on free admission days, there are plenty of other costless experiences to enjoy in Brussels. Take a leisurely stroll through the city’s lush parks and gardens, such as the beautiful Parc du Cinquantenaire or the peaceful Botanique. These green spaces offer a tranquil escape from the bustling city streets and provide the perfect setting for a relaxing picnic or afternoon of people-watching.

For a taste of local culture, head to the Grand-Place, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the central square of Brussels. Marvel at the stunning architecture of the surrounding buildings, including the impressive Town Hall and the opulent guildhalls. The square is also a hub of activity, with street performers, markets, and events frequently taking place.

For those interested in history and architecture, a visit to the European Parliament is a must. Take a guided tour of the impressive building and learn about the workings of the European Union. The tour offers insight into the political and cultural significance of Brussels as the capital of Europe.

If you’re a fan of street art, be sure to explore the vibrant neighborhoods of Saint-Gilles and Ixelles, where you can admire colorful murals and graffiti adorning the walls of buildings. These areas are a haven for artists and creatives, and the ever-changing street art scene provides a unique and dynamic backdrop to the city.

Finally, don’t miss the opportunity to sample some of Belgium’s famous culinary delights. Wander through the city’s many food markets and sample local specialties such as waffles, chocolate, and frites (Belgian fries). Many markets offer free tastings and samples, allowing you to indulge in the flavors of Brussels without breaking the bank.

With so many costless experiences to enjoy, Brussels is a budget traveler’s dream. Whether you’re interested in art, history, nature, or food, the city offers a wealth of activities that won’t cost you a dime. So pack your walking shoes and get ready to uncover the hidden treasures of Brussels without spending a penny. 


Belgium is a country of contrasts, where history meets modernity, and culinary delights meet cultural richness. By exploring Brussels and venturing to other Belgian cities, travelers can immerse themselves in the essence of this fascinating country. Whether you’re marveling at historic landmarks, indulging in culinary treats, or discovering free activities, Belgium offers an unforgettable experience for every traveler.

Embark on your Belgian adventure today, and let these guides lead you to the heart of Belgium’s charm and beauty.Discover the charming cobblestone streets of Bruges, a city that seems frozen in time with its medieval architecture and picturesque canals. Indulge in a sweet treat with some delectable Belgian chocolate, or sample the famous Belgian waffles topped with fresh fruit and whipped cream.

In Antwerp, immerse yourself in the world of fashion and design, as the city is known for its thriving fashion scene and avant-garde architecture. Visit the stunning Antwerp Central Station, a masterpiece of railway architecture, and explore the city’s vibrant art scene at the Museum aan de Stroom.

For a taste of nature, head to the Ardennes region, where you can hike through lush forests, kayak down the meandering rivers, and visit charming villages nestled in the rolling hills. The Ardennes also offers opportunities for outdoor activities such as rock climbing, mountain biking, and even caving in the vast network of caves.

No trip to Belgium would be complete without sampling the world-renowned Belgian beer. Visit a traditional brewery or cozy pub to savor a wide variety of beers, from fruity lambics to rich Trappist ales, and learn about the brewing process that has been perfected over centuries.

With its rich history, diverse culture, and mouthwatering cuisine, Belgium is a treasure trove waiting to be explored. So pack your bags and get ready to be enchanted by the enchanting beauty of this captivating country.