10 Most Beautiful Places to Visit in Belgium

Belgium is a low-lying country on the North Sea coast in the Benelux. With the majority of West European capitals within 1,000km or 622 miles of the Belgian capital of Brussels, and as a member of the long-standing international Benelux community, Belgium sits at the crossroads of Western Europe. Its immediate neighbours are France to the southwest, Luxembourg to the southeast, Germany to the east and the Netherlands to the north.

1. Bruges

Bruges  — One of Europe’s wealthiest cities in the 14th century, nicknamed the ‘Venice of the north’ because of the canals and romantic atmosphere. The historic centre is mainly medieval, including the famous belfry, a Beguine and the Groeningen museum. Quiet at night, Bruges offers lots of small guest houses and family businesses greatly outnumbering chain hotels. Damme and Lissewege are popular towns to visit in the environs.

Bruges is a town in Flanders, the northern part of Belgium. Relatively cosmopolitan and bourgeois given its compact size, it is one of the best preserved pre-motorised cities in Europe and offers the kind of charms rarely available elsewhere. Bruges is a postcard perfect stop on any tour of Europe.

2. Brussels

Brussels — Belgium’s bilingual capital and the unofficial capital of the EU. Today one of the most multicultural cities in Europe. Brussels has a nice historic centre around the famous Grand Place with its Gothic town hall and baroque guild halls. Other popular destinations are the Atomium, one of the symbols of Belgium, the European Quarter, the Palace of Justice, the Cathedral of Saint Michael and Gudula, the Stock Exchange, the Royal Palace, The “Manneken Pis” and the art nouveau Houses of Victor Horta. Brussels houses some important museums, such as the Magritte Museum, the Belgian Comic Strip Center and the Royal Museums of Fine Arts.

3. Antwerp

Antwerp — Belgium’s second largest city, along the Scheldt river, is landmarked by the enormous Gothic cathedral of Our Lady and especially known for four things: Rubens, diamonds, fashion and the port, the second largest of Europe. Places of interest are the Grote Markt, with the renaissance city hall and stair shaped guild houses, the central station, the Plantin-Moretus museum, the MAS museum, the zoo and the Royal Museum of Fine Arts.

4. Ghent

Ghent — Once one of Europe’s largest cities, Ghent is now a perfect mixture of Antwerp and Bruges: a cosy medieval centre with canals, a lot of churches and a great castle, yet with a lively student population, a modern art scene and some great festivals. The Gothic Saint Bavo cathedral houses the Lamb of God, one of the masterpieces of Flemish medieval painting.

5. Liège

Liège — The cultural hub of Wallonia – which sits on the banks of the wide river Meuse – is a many sided city that is definitely worth visiting if you are in Belgium. Besides some industrial scars, it is undeniable that Liège has a unique character, an eclectic mix of architecture from the middle ages to the present, a dramatic setting, exciting night-life, a number of museums, and varied natural surroundings to boot!

6. Leuven

Leuven — A small city dominated by one of Europe’s oldest universities. Beautiful historic centre and a lively nightlife. Leuven is also known as the home of Stella Artois and Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewing company.

It is also the ideal starting point to discover the rest of the country: Brussels is just around the corner, the Coast is only a 1.5 hour train ride away and Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent, Liege, Mechelen and Hasselt are nearby. Lately, more and more tourists visit Leuven as the city has stepped up its efforts to make tourists feel at home.

7. Dinant

Dinant — A small town with a cathedral and citadel in a stunning natural setting on the Meuse river, Dinant is a popular spot for adventure sports such as canoeing and rock-climbing which best visited in winter. Dinant is known as the place where Adolphe Sax invented the saxophone.

Dinant is a city in the province of Namur in Belgium.

8. Binche

Binche is a small town in the Belgian Province of Hainaut about 34 miles south of Brussels. The Carnival de Binche Belgium’s most famous carnival, attracts thousands of visitors annually. For three days in February the town of Binche is transported back to the 16th century for one of the most fantastic festivals of the year. Highlighted by music parades and fireworks, the climax of this event is when the Gilles appear on the Grand Place and throw oranges to the spectators. This infamous festivity has been classified as part of the world’s cultural heritage by UNESCO along with its renowned Gilles.

9. Namur

Namur — The political capital of Wallonia, Namur is a classy town of around a 100,000 inhabitants, that boasts a tidy, well preserved old centre and an impressive citadel at the confluence of the Sambre and Meuse rivers. Similarly to Liège, Namur has a a dramatic setting and impressive natural scenery in its immediate surroundings.

Its strategic location – where the rivers Sambre joins the Meuse – was first exploited by the Romans who settled there and used it as a base for trading. From there it became an important city in the region, defended by the citadelle.

10. Mons

Mons – Also known as the ´Bruges of Wallonia´, Mons´ historic centre is simply stunning!

Mons is the capital of the Belgian province of Hainaut, in the region of Wallonia. Together with the Czech city of Plzeň, Mons was the European Capital of Culture in 2015. At its center is the Grand Place, a large cobblestone square dotted with cafes. It’s lined with buildings in a mix of architectural styles, notably the centuries-old Town Hall. Nearby is the 17th-century baroque belfry, with sweeping city views.