Brussels to Ghent

Brussels to Ghent

Brussels is the capital city of Belgium which is located in the EU and Schengen community.  Brussels offers the following points of interest for tourists and photographers;

  • Downtown Brussels, the Grand Place and Brussels Town Hall
  • Manneken Pis
  • Atomium and Mini Europe
  • St Michael and St Gudula Cathedral
  • Royal Palace
  • Parc du Cinquantenaire
  • Parliamentarium and EU Buildings
  • Law Courts of Brussels
  • Kings House
  • Museum of Cacao and Chocolate and various other museums

Hotels in Brussels are quite reasonably priced for this part of the world, you can probably find a great hotel deal in downtown Brussels.

St Michael and St Gudula Cathedral, Brussels

St Michael and St Gudula Cathedral, Brussels

Around downtown Brussels you’ll find incredible architecture to photograph, you must visit the Grand Place where you’ll find Brussels Town Hall.  A top spot to photograph close to the Grand Place is the Manneken Pis which is a bronze statue of a small boy peeing.

Around Grand Place you’ll find shops selling Belgian waffles and chips (french fries).  I’m not always a fan of trying the local food but a Belgian waffle covered in nutella or sugar cannot be turned down.  Being from England where we have fish and chips, I preferred the British chips, after saying that, the Belgian chips were still a must.

A short walk from the center of Brussels, on the way to the Royal Palace, you’ll find the St Michael and St Gudula Cathedral (above).

Royal Palace, Brussels

Royal Palace, Brussels

The Royal Palace is a must visit in Brussels, it’s the home of the King and Queen of Belgium.  A few months of the year it’s possible to visit the palace, the rest of the year you’ll be able to view from the street.  A visit here is the equivalent of visiting Buckingham Palace in London.  Opposite the Palace is the Brussels Park which is surrounded by beautiful Belgian architecture including the Center of Fine Arts and Chamber of Representatives.

Parlamentarium, Brussels

Parlamentarium, Brussels

A short walk from the Royal Palace is the Parlamentarium which is the visitor center for the European Parliament.  If you are interested in politics, this is the largest parliamentary visitor center in Europe and you won’t be disappointed as you get to visit the Hemicycle you’ve probably seen on CNN or BBC.  Make sure you check the schedule before arriving to see if it’s open (entrance is free).  You’ll also find many other significant European parliament buildings around this area of Brussels.

Arc de Triomphe, Cinquantenaire Park, Brussels

Arc de Triomphe, Cinquantenaire Park, Brussels

Belgium has it’s own Arc de Triomphe also know as Arc du Cinquantenaire which is the centerpiece of Cinquantenaire park.  Translated into English. Cinquantenaire park means park of the 50th anniversary.  The park was created in 1880 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Belgian independence, the arc was completed in 1905.

Atomium, Brussels

Atomium, Brussels

The Atomium is probably the most popular destination in Brussels and one of the cities most important landmarks.  It’s possible to go inside each of the atoms and once you’re in the atom at the top you can take a great panoramic shot of the surrounding area.  Right next to the Atomium is the Mini-Europe theme park where you’ll find a miniature version of Europe.  Here you’ll find small scale and very detailed landmarks from European cities such as Big Ben, Eiffel Tower and the leaning tower of Pisa.

The Heysel football stadium is where Liverpool infamously played Juventus in 1985 European Cup Final and is located close to the Atomium.  An hour before kick off the Liverpool fans charged at the Juventus fans which led to a wall collapsing and lots of Juventus fans being killed.  Subsequently English teams were banned from all European competition for several years.  There’s now a plaque at the stadium in memory of those who died on this day.

Train from Brussels to Ghent, 40 minutes, €7

Train from Brussels to Ghent, 40 minutes, €7

Trains leave Brussels for Ghent very regularly and take less than 40 minutes for around €7.  You can take the train from any of the major Brussels train stations as they pass through all of them.  Make sure you buy your ticket from a machine before boarding the train.

Ghent to Bruges

2017-03-29T12:17:11+00:00February 28th, 2017|Belgium|18 Comments


  1. Ashley Smith March 4, 2017 at 3:15 pm - Reply

    This is perfectly timed at my next trip this month is to Brussels (and then Ghent). I can’t wait to see it all and those waffles and chips sound fantastic. I’m probably going to see everything you mentioned here but I’m most excited about drinking the beer and eating the food. 🙂

  2. Noemi of Pinay Flying High March 4, 2017 at 3:33 pm - Reply

    One of the things I love European cities is how walkable everything seem to be. A quick walk from anywhere brings you to a touristic destination. Saves up money for more important things like, food. :p

    Did you go inside the Atomium? It looks interesting and I’m curious how the view from up there looks like.

  3. Marlies - Crazy Dutch Abroad March 4, 2017 at 5:46 pm - Reply

    What a lovely article about Brussels and the highlights. Although I have been there a few times I never made it to the Atomium and the Mini-Europe theme park. Traveling by train seems pretty easy here. I hope you enjoyed some Belgium beers too.

    • James Smith March 4, 2017 at 6:36 pm - Reply

      I sure did enjoy a decent amount of Belgian beer!

  4. Fray March 4, 2017 at 6:03 pm - Reply

    The architecture is truly magnificent… and so much of it too!

    I also agree with the above comment. The walkability (is that even a word?) makes it a must visit location.

    Normally I’m not a sweets man, but I totally agree with your waffle analysis 🙂 Definitely can’t turn your nose up at one with lashings of strawberries and cream.

    Great photos

  5. Bhushavali March 5, 2017 at 10:30 am - Reply

    I went to most of these places in Brussels! I was there during the Flower Carpet festival and it was one of the most breathtaking artworks I’ve ever seen!!!! Apart from Mannekin Pis there are 2 more similar sculptures too there. Unfortunately, the Cathedral was closed on the day I went! 🙁

  6. Katie March 5, 2017 at 12:34 pm - Reply

    Brussels is so near to us in the UK and we really need to visit! It looks like such a beautiful place to explore and plus, I wanna eat that chocolate! Thanks for sharing!

  7. carlinn meyer March 5, 2017 at 1:03 pm - Reply

    Oh wow, I want to go in those atoms haha it looks so cool! I have never been to Brussels but it looks like there are quite a few interesting places to visit! Thanks for all the info 🙂

  8. Ticking the Bucketlist March 6, 2017 at 3:01 am - Reply

    I have been to Netherlands, but never to Belgium. I love the architecture in your pictures…looks so stunning. I guess I would also spend a lot of my time eating chocolates in Belgium…not good for the waist 😛

  9. Mohit Agarwal March 10, 2017 at 6:29 am - Reply

    Buussela is an amazing city…if i am not wrong the atomium offers dining too?

  10. Debra Schroeder March 18, 2017 at 10:02 am - Reply

    A Belgian waffle with Nutella is the perfect snack. But I never turn down a waffle. 🙂 I don’t normally eat fries (chips) but sounds like they’re a must try. Your fisheye shots really make your photos pop.I’m definitely adding the Atomium to my must do list for Brussels.

  11. Paulina March 18, 2017 at 12:11 pm - Reply

    Mmmhh the nutella waffles! I lived for 3 years in Brussels, and I definitely gained a lot of kilos thanks to the amazing waffles hahahaa. What I loved about Brussels was its cultural mix.

  12. Mel I TravelingMel March 19, 2017 at 7:00 am - Reply

    I love when you start your posts with “accommodations are reasonable in this part of the world!” Brussels looks like a great place to visit. We’ve been eating a lot of fish and chips here in England, so I would need to try them in Brussels to compare :). The Atomium looks super interesting. I think I’d want to go inside even if it is touristy.

  13. Vicki Louise March 19, 2017 at 8:15 am - Reply

    I hadn’t realised there was so much to see in Brussels. It’s a destination that is increasing in popularity – which is great, and hopefully more people will be able to enjoy everything Brussels has to offer. As a fellow Brit I’m partial to some good old (northern) England fish and chips – but I’m intrigued about Belgian chips. I’d probably give the waffles a miss tho, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth.

  14. Samantha Sparrow March 19, 2017 at 10:00 am - Reply

    Brussels in one of my fave European cities, its so close to the UK and I recently visited again for the day in February. I think my favourite place that you have mentioned is St Michael and St Gudula Cathedral. It’s one of the most beautiful I’ve seen and I think it helps that it is up a hill and looks over the city!

  15. Gareth March 20, 2017 at 9:43 am - Reply

    It was my very good fortunate to visit Brussels last year and the city really is a lot of fun. As the pictures would suggest, it is a truly beautiful city with some stunning architecture, not least the Cathedrals mentioned. And then of course, there’s Belgian beer which is amongst the best in the world. Great post and some awesome shots

  16. sophie March 23, 2017 at 12:38 pm - Reply

    Brussels actually is not too far to UK. hope I can visit it on my next trip in May. I think the places and things to do what you have mentioned would help me alot on my trip! Thanks for sharing! The city looks amazing with amazing architecture.

  17. Archana Singh March 24, 2017 at 2:00 pm - Reply


    I have said it before and again I am saying – I totally love your pictures. Your post reminded me of my time in Brussels. Now I am totally nostalgic. Thanks for sharing.

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