Beneath the Belfries: Exploring Belgium's Medieval Towns

Belgium, a country rich in history, culture, and culinary delights, offers travelers a diverse array of experiences to enjoy. From medieval towns to modern cities, picturesque landscapes to world-renowned cuisine, there's something for everyone to discover in this charming European destination. Here are the top 10 things to do in Belgium, each offering a unique and unforgettable adventure:

Discover the Historic Center of Bruges:

Nestled in the northwest of Belgium, Bruges is a medieval masterpiece that transports visitors back in time with its well-preserved architecture, winding canals, and cobblestone streets. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the historic center of Bruges is home to iconic landmarks such as the Belfry of Bruges, the Basilica of the Holy Blood, and the Markt square. Take a leisurely boat tour along the canals to admire the city's enchanting scenery, or simply wander through its charming streets, stopping to indulge in Belgian chocolates from one of the many local chocolatiers.

Marvel at the Grand Place in Brussels:

The Grand Place, or Grote Markt, is the beating heart of Brussels and one of the most beautiful squares in Europe. Surrounded by opulent guildhalls, the towering Town Hall, and the majestic King's House, the Grand Place is a testament to Belgium's rich history and architectural heritage. Be sure to visit during the biennial Flower Carpet event, when the square is adorned with over 600,000 colorful flowers, creating a stunning tapestry of color and fragrance.

Sample Belgian Waffles in Liège:

No visit to Belgium would be complete without indulging in its most famous culinary export – the Belgian waffle. While Brussels may be renowned for its light and airy Brussels waffles, Liège is the place to go for a taste of the authentic Belgian sugar waffle. Made with pearl sugar that caramelizes on the outside, these waffles are crispy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside, and utterly delicious. Pair your waffle with a dollop of whipped cream, fresh fruit, or a drizzle of Belgian chocolate for the ultimate indulgence.

Explore the Atomium in Brussels:

A symbol of modernity and innovation, the Atomium is a must-visit attraction for anyone traveling to Brussels. Built for the 1958 World's Fair, this futuristic structure stands 102 meters tall and is comprised of nine interconnected spheres. Take a ride in the high-speed elevator to the top sphere for breathtaking panoramic views of Brussels and beyond, then explore the fascinating exhibitions housed within the Atomium's spheres, including displays on science, technology, and the history of the building itself.

Visit the Cathedral of Saint Bavo in Ghent:

Situated in the heart of Ghent, the Cathedral of Saint Bavo, or Sint-Baafskathedraal, is a stunning example of Gothic architecture and home to several artistic masterpieces. Marvel at the cathedral's towering spires and intricate stained glass windows before stepping inside to admire works by renowned artists such as Jan van Eyck and Peter Paul Rubens. Don't miss the chance to see the famous Ghent Altarpiece, also known as the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb, which is considered one of the most important pieces of early Flemish painting.

Wander the Streets of Antwerp:

Known as Belgium's fashion and cultural capital, Antwerp is a vibrant city with a rich history and a cosmopolitan flair. Explore the historic Diamond District, where over 80% of the world's rough diamonds are traded, or take a leisurely stroll along the picturesque River Scheldt. Visit the iconic Antwerp Zoo, one of the oldest zoos in the world, and marvel at its impressive collection of animals, including elephants, lions, and giraffes.

Experience the Battle of Waterloo:

History comes alive at the site of the Battle of Waterloo, where Napoleon Bonaparte faced defeat in 1815 at the hands of the Duke of Wellington and his allied forces. Explore the interactive museum located on the battlefield, which offers insight into the events leading up to the battle, the strategies employed by both sides, and the aftermath of the conflict. Climb the iconic Lion's Mound for panoramic views of the battlefield and gain a deeper understanding of this pivotal moment in European history.

Indulge in Belgian Beer Tasting:

Belgium is renowned for its rich beer culture and is home to over 1,500 different varieties of beer, each with its own unique flavor profile and brewing tradition. Embark on a beer-tasting journey through the country, visiting traditional breweries, cozy pubs, and bustling beer festivals. Sample a diverse range of brews, from crisp and refreshing pilsners to complex and flavorful Trappist ales, and learn about the history and craftsmanship behind Belgium's most famous beverage.

Discover the Fairy-Tale Castle of Ghent:

Perched atop a hill overlooking the city of Ghent, the Gravensteen Castle, or Castle of the Counts, is a medieval fortress straight out of a fairy tale. Built in the 12th century by Count Philip of Alsace, the castle served as a symbol of power and prestige for centuries. Today, visitors can explore its imposing battlements, climb its winding staircases, and learn about its fascinating history through interactive exhibits and guided tours.

Relax in the Ardennes:

Escape the hustle and bustle of city life with a retreat to the picturesque Ardennes region, a pristine wilderness of rolling hills, dense forests, and meandering rivers. Hike along scenic trails, kayak or canoe along tranquil waterways, and soak up the serenity of this idyllic natural paradise. Visit charming villages nestled amidst the verdant landscape, where you can savor local specialties such as Ardennes ham, wild boar stew, and savory galettes.

From the enchanting medieval streets of Bruges to the bustling cultural hub of Antwerp, Belgium offers a wealth of experiences just waiting to be discovered. Whether you're a history buff, a foodie, or simply seeking a relaxing getaway, Belgium has something for everyone to enjoy. So pack your bags, grab your camera, and prepare to be enchanted by the charm and beauty of this captivating country.

Immerse yourself in the enchanting world of travel with Lets Journey, your ultimate guide to exploring Belgium's medieval towns, indulging in delectable Belgian cuisine, and discovering top attractions. Whether you seek historical marvels or culinary delights, Lets Journey ensures an enriching exploration of Belgium's treasures, inviting you to uncover its hidden gems and embark on unforgettable adventures. Dive into the portal to unlock insider tips, expert recommendations, and curated itineraries for an unparalleled travel experience in Belgium.