Tourism in Belgium, Europe’s little gem
For such a tiny country, Belgium has contributed much to the world: the first casino, the concept and word “spa” (named after one of its towns), pralines, waffles and French fries. A quick flight from anywhere else in Europe, it’s a tourist destination worth getting to know.
In 1695, the French set out to bomb Brussels’ Hôtel de Ville, and managed instead to destroy everything else in the city’s central square, leaving the striking Gothic town hall intact. Now it’s among the monuments that make the Grand-Place one of the most spectacular attractions in Belgium. The Bourse, adorned with sculptures by Rodin, is another.
The underground erosion of a limestone hill by the Lesse River has resulted in the creation of one of Belgium’s most remarkable natural wonders. The awe-inspiring Grottes de Han are accessible only by vintage tram, which simply adds to their charm.
A visit to the Chocolate Capital of the World isn’t complete without a visit to Choco-Story, Bruges’s chocolate museum. Guests learn about the history of chocolate from the Maya to today’s connoisseurs. The best part: visitors can sample handmade chocolates on-site as a delicious accompaniment to the tour.
The Diamant Museum explores Antwerp’s role as the largest diamond centre in the world. Of the world’s rough diamonds, 84% pass through this city, the focus of the diamond trade for centuries.
Originally a cookie shop, Maison Dandoy’s is renowned as the best waffle place in all of Belgium. Located in Brussels, they also serve the sweeter and denser Liège variety. Either is divine with Dandoy’s famous cherries on top.
Family run for over 60 years, Maison Antoine is considered the best frituur in Belgium—no small feat in a country known for its fries! Delicious with sauces like piri piri or samurai, these frites are worth the inevitable line-ups.
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