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Belgium

Travel destinations in Belgium! Do you like the Middle Ages, good beer, Belgian chocolate, moules frites, diamonds, design or possibly waffles? Here are our top travel tips for Belgium!

Why travel to Belgium?

Belgium is an exciting country to discover. The capital Brussels offers many historical sights. In Flanders you will also find charming and interesting cities such as Ghent, Bruges and Antwerp. There is also the less talked-about, French-speaking Wallonia.

In Belgium you can visit breweries and try many different types of beer. You can also try the classic Belgian waffles, take boat trips on canals or visit museums that are not available anywhere else. Let Belgium inspire you!

Travel destinations in Belgium - inspirational reading

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Helena Bergström in Belgium, the travel magazine FREEDOMtravel

More destinations in Belgium - bucket list

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Lejonkullen - La Butte de Lion

Battle of Waterloo which was 18 June 1815 when Napoleon lost the great battle with over 200,000 soldiers. Climb 226 steps to the huge 28-tonne bronze lion and look out over the battlefield.

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Leuven

Leuven City Hall as you can see in the photo, is incredibly powerful. There is Belgium's oldest and largest university and the old Ode Markt square. The Stella Artois beer since 1717 which is best drunk at Café Allée and Europe's longest bar counter. Several UNESCO world heritage sites in the city.

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Source: Belgium 190 Cermivelli - All Creative Commons

Villers Abbey

Dream place for photos from the old monastery of Villers-la-ville, located 50 km south of Brussels. Dating from 1146 and located in Walloon Brabant, the monastery is huge.

The caves of Remouchamps

8000 years ago there were people in these caves. A guided tour includes a walk and boat ride. The Rubicon River, the longest underwater river in the world. It is also home to a transparent shrimp (niphargus) which is blind.

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Dinant

The beautiful city of Dinant in Wallonia, located on the Meuse River. Take the cable car up or walk 408 steps to the 12th century Citadel. The centrepiece of the city is the Gothic cathedral Collégiale Notre Dame de Dinant. Belgium's famous Leffe beer comes from here.

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De Haan

Belgium's beautiful coastline in West Flanders. Everything we've seen yet in pictures seems soooo charming. Miles of beaches and town centres with a mix of medieval and Belle Époque. This is what we want to experience!

Damme

Outside Bruges is the town of Damme with its picturesque Damse Vaart canal. Here you go for canal boats that take you along a tree-lined charming journey with windmills and old houses. Damme is also known for its moderate book market.

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Water City Spa

Is this where it started? The town of Spa with its 14th century mineral springs and all the celebrities and kings who have been there.

Alexander Dumas who wrote The Four Musketeers.", Victor Hugo and many more in the Pearl of the Ardennes. The Concours de Beauté was the first beauty festival in the world on 19 September 1888 in the town of Spa.

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Source: The Tomb of the Giant Eric Huybrechts - All Creative Commons

Tomb of the Giant

At the town of Botassart and Boullion In Wallonia, the Semois River and Semois Valley are beautiful with castles, tombs, check out the Han-sur-Lesse caves if you dare, and hiking trails. You can also canoe and raft very close to the border with France.

Veurne

The old medieval town of Veurne with Walburga Park and the colossal St Walburga's Church and Grote Markt square. The monastery and town hall (Landhuis) have been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1999. See the Spanish Pavilion and just outside the town of Veurne is the very cool looking Beauvoorde Castle.

Tyne Cot Cemetery

35 000 soldiers, women and children lost their lives during the First World War, and most of them have no name. This was a front line and there are mostly British people buried here from 1915-1917. This is the British Commonwealth War Cemetery Tyne Cot, located south of Bruges.

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Ypres

Ypres which is very close to the Tyne Cot cemetery.. In the 14th century, Ypres, Bruges and Ghent were leaders in the textile industry. This Gothic palace, with its 140 metre long façade and 70 metre high tower, was one of the most impressive creations in Belgium at the time.

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Source: Durbuy castle Patrick Ahles All Creative Commons

Durbuy

I have been scouting around on this charming medieval town and it really is something special. Located in the centre of Wallonia, this town has cobbled streets and pointed roofs. It is also the smallest town in Belgium with the 18th century Durbuy Castle and a beautiful river called the Ourthe.

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Source: The Feudal Castle Bert Remmerswaal - All Creative Commons

La Roche en Ardenne

Time has stood still here as in many towns in Wallonia. The city is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Ardennes. The river Ourthe flows through the town and the castle, which dates back to 850 BC. It's a place for nature, with mountain biking, kayaking and hiking high on the programme.

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Cells

Here was the ghost castle until 2017 when it was demolished and is now too late for us. This whole town seems to be a bit ghostly because there are several castles like Chateau Veves and old carnivals that have stood for several hundred years.

Liège

The city of Liège in Wallonia is both super modern, metropolitan and with all the old medieval buildings required. I can't quite figure out what to look for or what to think?

Look for the Perron, the Great Palace, Liège Cathedral, the Church of St James. Museums such as La Boveire and the Walloon Museum and then you enter the city.

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Source: Ratusz, Charles II Square Magro_Kr - All Creative Commons

Charleroi

The second largest city in Wallonia located 60 km south of Brussels in Belgium. the town hall/city hall (or Hotel De Ville) is a charming house, Charleroi aka Musee De La Photographie is the largest photography museum in Europe.

St Christopher Church is the most beautiful building in the whole of Charleroi, and UNESCO The heritage Belfry, which will take you half a day to get up. Cuve A Biére is one of the city's liveliest bars.

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Castle of Bouillion

A fantastic castle/fortress which I cannot find any photos to show in Wallonia. This must be seen and it is located 60 km from Brussels, and this is the town of Bouillion.

Source: Strépy-Thieu boat lift John Williams - All Creative Commons

Canal du Centre

River Meuse would be connected to the river Scheldt in the mid-19th century. The rise was 96 metres and locks were completely unreasonable.

The decision was to build boat lifts to four sites, but the first was Stréply-Thieu, which rose 73 metres and was the tallest of its kind when it was inaugurated on 4 June 1888. The other three were completed by 1917 and all four are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

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Source: Tournai Belgium Isamiga 76 - All Creative Commons

Notre Dame Cathedral in Tournai

In the south, in the year 300 there was a small church, but between 1146-1325 a huge cathedral was built with five towers and two semicircular ends. The church began to be built in Romanesque style and finished in Gothic. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is worth seeing during your trip to Belgium.

Source: Prehistoric mines of Spiennes Ines sAll Creative Commons

The Neolithic flint mines in Spiennes

Between 4200-2500 BC it was excavated for flint. This UNESCO World Heritage Site also contains evidence of humans from the Palaeolithic period, 35 000-11 000 years before Christ. You have to book because they only let in a few thousand people per year. It is also called SILEX'S Mons.

Info and facts about Belgium

  • Capital city: Brussels
  • Language: Dutch, French and German
  • Residents: 11.5 million (2020)
  • Currency: Euro
  • Religion: Christianity (mostly Catholicism)
  • Flag: The flag consists of three equally wide vertical fields in black, yellow and red.

Geographical breakdown of Belgium

Belgium is divided into three communities and Brussels. In the north is the Flemish Community (Flanders) with five provinces:

  • Antwerp
  • Flemish Brabant
  • Limburg
  • West Flanders
  • East Flanders

To the south is the French Community (Wallonia), also with five provinces:

  • Walloon Brabant
  • Hainaut
  • Liège
  • Luxenburg
  • Naur

In the east, the German-speaking community is without provinces.

Good to know about Belgium

  • Price mode: As in Sweden approximately
  • Time difference: None
  • Emergency number: 112
  • El: Like Sweden

Travelling to Belgium

  • FlightsFor example, you can fly with Brussels Airlines from Bromma in Stockholm to Brussels.
  • BilFor example, travel from Gothenburg to Kiel with Stena line, which takes about 14 h 30 min.

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2 Comments

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  1. Congratulations to Freedomtravel, which has made the greatest possible impression on me and my husband, who is searching the internet for advice and tips for our European trip starting this April. However, I was a bit disappointed to read about Belgium where you do not write anything about Bruges which offers the medieval city centre that was included in 2000 on the UNESCO World Heritage List. That if anything is well worth a visit!?

    • Helena says:

      Hi Marlene! Thank you for your comment! Of course you are absolutely right that Bruges is worth a visit. On our country pages we only recommend places we have visited ourselves, and unfortunately we haven't had the opportunity to visit Bruges yet. Hopefully we will in the future!

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