A couple of months ago me and my mom decided to plan a girls trip to Europe again. This time we decided to explore three new cities we’ve always wanted to visit. She chose Brussels and I chose Barcelona and we both agreed to add Madrid in the mix. I must admit when looking at weather patterns and planing my wardrobe for Brussels I wasn’t too excited to travel to a cold and rainy place. We were flying into Paris and taking a train to Brussels to stay for the first four days of our trip.
When traveling to a new city I try to stay somewhere centrally located as possible. Unfortunately, our hotel canceled our reservations two nights before our trip and wanted to accommodate us outside of the city center leaving us scrambling to find a new hotel. Luckily I came across this cute family run boutique hotel in Bourse called Pacific Cafe. The room was very spacious and we had a nice view of our street and the stock exchange building. I’m happy that our other hotel didn’t work out because I love the street we stayed on and the area was super cute.
Leaving dinner our first night in BXL we discovered La Grand Palace on our walk back to our hotel. Not sure where we were at the time we admired its beauty.
The next two days we spent most of our time on a hop-on-hop-off tour bus guiding us through the city. We found this very helpful to see the entire city and discover which sites we would like to explore more. The Atomium, is one of Brussels’ offbeat attractions. This gigantic, silvery molecule with atoms is targeted toward kids but it was pretty cool to see up close.
First order of business was waffles! I truly don’t understand how the waffles taste a million times better here but they do and I still can’t stop thinking about them! We tried waffles from the famous Masion Dandoy first. There are two types of waffles Brussels vs Leige. I found that I love the sweet Leige to the Brussels waffle but both are delicious.
You can find a place that sells waffles on almost every street corner! I made another waffle stop while exploring the city and had a Leige waffle with nutella. It seriously blew my mind! Words cannot describe how my taste buds were exploding.
While we were there, we were told that we must try the “frites”. They taste so good because they’re deep-fried twice — once to cook, and once to brown. The locals dunk them in mayonnaise, I opted for a spicy mayo that tasted like a mix of ketchup, sriracha and mayo.
We also wanted to try an authentic Belgian meal and after hours of research on TripAdvisor we decided to try a restaurant that happened to be right around the corner from our hotel. Publico was very cute inside with very welcoming staff that helped us choose entrees. I had the “Vol au vent, salade et frites” which was absolutely delicious! We couldn’t have dinner without desert so we had the “Brownie au chocolat fait maison, creme Anglaise et glace aux noisettes” and our waiter gave us some cocktails on the house! Great food and amazing service.
Later that night I found myself in the historic heart of Brussels at Café Des Halles Saint-Géry which has been fully renovated over an ancient market. The venue is pretty cool for and the menus are even cooler. I took one home as a souvenir! If you’re in BXL this place is a must see. I know Belgium is known for their beers but I’m not a big fan but I did try the “Kriek Lambic Mort” which literally tasted like cranberry juice! So I wasn’t mad at that.
The following morning I stopped by the Lounge Bar at The Dominican which is just a few minutes away from the Grand Place. I loved the ambiance of this place. I only stopped in for a latte if I had more time I would have come back for a cocktail at night.
For our dinner in Brussels we went to an all you can eat BBQ restaurant. Yes, all you can eat BBQ ribs in Europe. Another little gem we discovered right around the corner from our hotel via TripAdvisor. Amadeo had quirky ambiance with walls filled with books, picnic style table cloths and jazz music playing. I couldn’t quite make out what the theme they were going for here but the food was delicious!
Later that night I went out with some locals to Swan Bar for drinks and dancing. This place seemed to be the spot to go to if you wanted to hear your favorite billboard top 100 singles mixing all night long. The atmosphere was very lively with everyone dancing or crowded around the bar for another drink. If you needed to take a break they had plenty of seating in front to relax and talk among friends.
Our final day before leaving Brussels my Mom was craving a classic breakfast. We stumbled upon this cute little cafe La Petite Production. The service was great and my eggs were perfect!
The city was a pleasant surprise of a rich brew of food and culture. I found the locals to be very friendly and welcoming! The city’s diversity, magnificent La Grand Place and the best waffles, alone makes a visit worthwhile! I can’t wait to visit Brussels again.