Is a short break in Brussels high on your travel list? It should be! Belgium’s capital has much to offer those seeking a weekend away. You won’t be surprised to discover that it has an impressive collection of historical churches and chocolate shops, but the city also offers plenty of quirkier sights for the off-the-beaten-track traveller.
You can find out everything you need to know in this handy infographic from Accor Hotels.
Did you know that Brussels has the most cartoonists per square metre than anywhere else in the world? It was home to both Hergé, the famed creator of the Tintin comics, and Peyo, who gave life to The Smurfs.
One of my favourite ways to explore the city is to take its Comic Book Route. In 1991, the local authority set up an initiative to decorate some of the blank walls of buildings around the city while paying homage to its cartoon heritage. Now there are 50 murals for you to spot on the Comic Book Route, featuring both iconic cartoon images and little-known characters brought to life by Belgian artists.
A Leafy Location
Brussels is well-known as one of the greenest capitals in Europe, with an impressive 28m² of green area per inhabitant. If you are visiting on a short trip, I would definitely recommend taking some time to explore a few of the city’s parks – maybe the Parc d’Osseghem or the Mont des Arts Gardens. With 178km of cycle paths throughout the city, you can easily make your way from one to the other on two wheels.
If you are scheduling a trip to Brussels around 15 August, it is worth checking whether you’ll be lucky enough to see the Flower Carpet in the Grand Place. Every other year, a colossal living carpet that’s 75m long and 24m wide is assembled in this historic square at the heart of the city. All 1800m² of the surface area are covered with beautiful, bright begonias – not a sight to be missed!
Just a Stone’s Throw Away
With a flight time of around an hour and ten minutes from London, the Belgian capital is merely a hop, skip and a jump across the channel, making it the perfect destination for a weekend break. Airlines including British Airways, Ryanair and Brussels Airlines all conduct flights to Brussels International Airport (BRU), which is just a 20-minute drive away from the city. For the ultimate convenience, book a private airport transfer with Shuttle Direct – their knowledgeable and punctual local drivers will get you to your accommodation in a jiffy, giving you more time to explore the delights of the city.