With its fairytale architecture, delicious chocolate, and fascinating culture, it’s no surprise that Belgium is high on many travelers’ bucket lists.
This relatively undiscovered gem has a plethora of beautiful cities and towns. And all the larger cities are packed with activities, attractions, and experiences that will leave you wanting to come back again and again!
Whether you’re looking for a cheap hostel stay in the famous city of Bruges or a relaxing vacation in the thermal spring town of Spa, Belgium has everything you could possibly need. And more.
Head To The Famous City Of Bruges
Belgium is home to some of the most beautiful cities in the world but, once you’ve seen Bruges, it may well become your favorite.
Bruges is home to the UNESCO World Heritage site, The Belfry of Bruges Tower, which featured in the film In Bruges. And yes, you can make the 366 step climb to the top of the tower.
This gothic city is one you will want to take your best camera to. Cruise along the waterways by boat before heading to the Markt, which has been held every Wednesday since 985.
Sample the world-famous chocolate at the Chocolatier Dumon (near the Markt), before strolling over to the Lake of Love to cross the Lover’s Bridge with your partner and seal your romance forever! Cheese!
Visit The Bohemian City Of Ghent
Ghent is well known for its relaxed, bohemian appeal which makes it an absolute must-see for anyone visiting Belgium.
Filled with myriad canals, bridges, and historical monuments, Ghent has a truly unique vibe that inspires magical memories and exciting experiences.
Take a stroll through the ancient streets of Patershol where you can peer through the windows of 16th-century ateliers, shops, and restaurants. Then look for the “Werregarenstraat” street art. If flowers are your thing, you won’t want to miss the Kouter flower market (Bloemenmarkt), particularly on Sundays.
And if you time you’re visiting in July, enjoy one of the biggest festivals in Europe, Gentse Feesten.
Relax in the town of Spa
Belgium is famous for its spa towns with the most well-known being Spa. Spa is a beautiful town located in the midst of a wooded valley which is surrounded by gently rolling hills, natural springs and freshwater rivers.
There is a multitude of activities to do in this stunning town, such as:
- relaxing in the hot swimming pools and Jacuzzis
- visiting the natural geysers
- soaking up the mineral-rich waters at the Clementine Spring in the Thermes de Spa.
Spa is also home to the gorgeous Parc 7 Heures, an aristocratic garden filled with monuments, and the second oldest casino in Europe, the Casino de Spa, which originally opened in 1763 but had to be rebuilt in 1918 after fire damage.
After all of the excitement of the casino, take a stroll around the 6.5-hectare lake at Lac de Warfaaz, which was created after the Way stream flooded several times in the 19th century.
Travel to the super cool city of Antwerp
Known as the coolest city in Belgium, Antwerp has a long history of being home to diamond dealers, artists and fashion moguls. Antwerp was also one of the most important ports in the whole of Europe during the 16th century.
Head to a frites café and sample some of the finest frites (fries) around before checking out the Stadsfeetstzal Shopping Centre for an indulgent shopping trip.
It’s a lot of fun to tour Antwerp by bike, which is super easy to do as there are plenty of places to hire a bike. Though you might want to join a bike tour with a guide to get the best learning experience.
Art fans will want to visit the home of the painter Pieter Paul Rubens, which displays a lot of his artwork, or the modern MAS museum which offers some breath-taking views of the city.
While it might seem like an overwhelming choice, the good news is that you can’t go wrong when choosing a Belgian city to explore. Belgium is a truly beautiful and unforgettable place to visit.
p.s. You can’t forget, as I learned back in 2015, they’re the masters of beer.