Museums, Gardens, Atoms & Europe

ICE International, Gare du Nord, Bruxelles

The decision to visit Bruxelles was taken by the collector in me, wanting to visit all capital cities in Europe. I’ve been to Belgium in my youth and later visited Bruges on my way to the Mont-Saint-Michel, but so far, I had only been stuck in the traffic jam around Bruxelles. By that time, I didn’t know what kind of beautiful city I was surrounding and how many wonderful places I didn’t visit because I hadn’t planned a stop at the Belgian capital.

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Choco-Story, Bruxelles

What would Belgium be without chocolate? When you’re walking through the city center of Bruxelles you can find numerous small chocolatiers offering their products (even in the shape of the Manneken Pis, obviously a famous souvenir) and the shops of famous brands we all connect with the country (like Godiva or Leonidas). Belgians love chocolate and say that theirs is the best; because they select the best cacao, use the best ingredients, and have the best production process.

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Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art (MIMA), Bruxelles

The Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art (MIMA) of Bruxelles is a contemporary visual art museum located in the buildings of a former brewery next the canal de Bruxelles. It is a small museum but offering art on four levels – works from their permanent collection and als changing exhibitions. The museum was founded in 2016 and is a private non-profit organization.

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Museum cluster

Palais des Beaux-Arts, Bruxelles

If you need to survive a rainy day in Bruxelles, the Musées royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique can be your safe harbor. Located at the Koningsplein it offers you a combination of wonderful museums that our interconnected: just buy a ticket and switch in underground passages between the Musée Magritte, the Musée Old Masters and the Musée Fin-de-Siècle. After the Belgian independence king Lépold I. wanted to create a museum about Belgian artists; the current museum building was opened in 1887.

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Muséum des sciences naturelles, Bruxelles

The natural sciences museum of Bruxelles dates back to the 18th century and is located near the Parc Léopold in the European quarter. With 38 million of items, it is one of the largest collections in Europe and the exposition area focusses on giving insight to the masses. Main topics are the human body, biodiversity in everyday life and mostly: dinosaurs. Yes, all the kids love them, and they seem to be the gateway drug into natural sciences.

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House of European History

House of European History, Bruxelles

Since 2017 you can find the House of European History in the European Quarter of Bruxelles. It focusses on the older and newer history of Europe as a continent and strives to present a historic line for all states on European ground. The museum starts with the definition of Europe, leads through the central struggles of the last centuries, and ends with current developments and conflicts.

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Musées royaux d’Art et d’Histoire

Musees Royaux d’Art et d’Histoire, Bruxelles

The royal museums for art and history at Bruxelles is a combination of state museums including the Art & History Museum at the Parc du Cinquantenaire (Jubelpark), the Porte de Hal, the Musical Instrument Museum in an art nouveau building and the Museums of the Far East located at Laken. The flagship is the giant Musée Art & Histoire (formerly called Musée du Cinquantenaire) which is one of the largest art museums in Europe.

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Public transport, Bruxelles

It is one of the standard questions upfront to every city trip: Shall I pay the entrance to all sights individually or buy a package upfront? In case of my typical museum marathons, it is most often good to search for cards and packages. In case of Bruxelles, the BrusselsCard was the perfect choice for me. It offers a package of forty-nine museums covering nearly all I wanted to see, and it also has an option for visiting the Atomium without waiting in line.

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Moeder Lambic

Moeder Lambic (Fontainas), Bruxelles

The Moeder Lambic is one of these fantastic Belgian beer bars with two locations in Bruxelles. The one close to the city center extends in summertime to the Place Fontainas in front of the bar – a perfect outdoor location on hot days. The list of available beers is long, but you shouldn’t worry: You can’t take a wrong decision here and the friendly staff assists you well. Blame me, but the Kriek Framboise (raspberry-flavored beer) is always a good option.

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Porte de Hal

Porte de Hal, Bruxelles

In medieval times the city of Bruxelles was protected by massive stone walls. The first walls were created in the 13th century, but the city was growing so fast that they were removed, and new ones were built in 1356 CE. These walls were eight kilometers long and fortified with seventy-two towers as well as eight gates named after the cities that could be reached through them.

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