Have made it to the city of Brussels. The weather has fined up and we have had three days of plus 25 degrees, excellent!
We are staying in a B&B about ten minutes on the metro from the grand city of Brussels. The house is amazing. It is around 100 years old and very nicely kept. A retiree runs the place and it is one of the nicer places we have been in. Paris was a tiny, cramped hole in comparison. I mean, there is a piano, fireplace and small couch in the room with us. We have a floor to ourselves with a private bathroom and it’s very, very pleasant! There are also two house cats in residence, both are incredibly overweight! I’ve never seen such fat cats! Apparently they were neighbours cats who got abandoned, but no info yet on how they got such large tummies.
Let me see, got to our B&B, then went into town to the main touristy square. It contains the Grand Place – which is the main square/guild hall/town hall and was built some time ago…. (I can’t get into history today!) Anyhoo, we had a wander, then had some lunch and Greg got stuck into a Leffe beer. Noice.
A Manneken Pis (not the actual!)
We kept wandering, got a little lost, got a little found and generally just explored the main area. The area around the Grand Place is well kept and there are heaps of places to drink beer (strange that) and eat chocolate! The area is being set up for a weekend jazz festival, so it should be crowded over the next few days! There are also quite a lot of waffle houses and even waffle vans (they don’t play Greensleeves though).
All the chocolate about resulted in a quick trip to one of the chocolate museums, where there was a Belgium chocolate making demo and some free samples, along with some history. It was nice to see the demo and how to make all the hollow choccies. My mum used to get into Easter and make us roosters and hens along with the usual bunnies and eggs. It was so good!
Greg managed to sample a waffle that day, I wandered around and oogled pretty shops. After which, we took the metro back to our room, then chilled out and digested a bit. Dinner was at a nearby cafe strip, but was boring by foodie standards.Â Eventually I will have some mussels served with chips…it’s the Belgian thing to eat! (Other then all of the beer, choccies and waffles!)
On to the next day….
We started our morning with croissants that were much tastier then the ones we had at our hotel in Paris (how wrong is that!) and a chat with the B&B owner, Cecil. He is pretty nice. We set off with plans to see the Atomium and Mini Europe, which are popular things to check out.These things are not hard to find on public transport and even if we may have taken the longer way, it was nice to see a bit of scenery right 😉
The Atomium was first – it was built during a World Fair many a year ago and has become an iconic Brussels tourist activity. It forms the shape of a unit cell of an iron crystal and you can go up inside it. It is sort of like a mini-sci tech, there was a water exhibit on and it was packed with kids and too many bored adults! I would suggest going to look at this landmark, but if say… you had climbed the Eiffel tower recently, maybe not bothering to go in.
To be fair – the place does have awesome escalators which are lit up by heaps of cool lights.
After re-grouping with some H20, we moved onto Mini-Europe…which is exactly as it claims! Models of monuments from all over Europe have been been put on display. It is a kiddy activity, but fun enough to look at. The displays all had a button to push which set off the national anthem or made something go 😉 Mt Vesuvius erupts – which is cool. At the very least, you can take lots of fun photos…if you are in the mood that is.
All in all, I was a little cantankerous by the end of this, it was a warm (ish) day and I was getting sick of other tourists. We have vowed to be more picky with our touristic choices and have some relax time on a regular basis. Still the area is great for families, as there is a water park nearby as well.
After a late lunch, with a sly beer or two thrown in, things didn’t seem so dire after all. I tried the kriek – which is a cherry beer and goes down really smooth.Â We headed back into the central train station and hunted down the Cantillion BreweryÂ – which is a small family run brewery that has been operating since 1900. It is famous for making lambic – which is a still, cereal beer. It is only 6 Euros to get in and have a look around – you get a short intro by one of the staff, then you are free to wander around yourself. Included is two good size samples of the brew. Greg and I both found it very interesting, it is well worth doing – beware it is super popular and crowded!
We made it home to collapse and decided a morning off the next day was in order – some time to do not very much sounded nice!
Belgium chocolate yummmm
So many tasty things! It looks so sunny there, Canberra is top of 11 today. Prost!
this makes for good weekend reading tan! i admit i have fallen behind a few days, so spending a lazy Sunday catching up!
Miss u both xo