That was the first thing that crossed our mind when a friend of ours asked us for travel tips in Brussels.
A long weekend in Belgium? No offence Brussels is the first target. Especially for the fans of art-nouveau. Barcelona-Brussels-Budapest, the 3B-s of Europe Art Nouveau heritage. Just take a ride or walk to Rue Belle Vue to start and continue in St Gilles quarter for magnificent buildings of Victor Horta.
The must see sights of the city are to be done. Usually the must see sight list of first visitors are quite alike: same attractions with same timing. This could highly decrease the chance of seeing anything of Manekin Piss. Not to mention the chance of taking photo with him that is close to rather impossible.
When your enthusiasm is about flagging just change your list. Instead of Manneken Pis go and look for his chocolate replica or his ignored female version, Jeanneken Pis in Rue des Bouchers.
Spend your Saturday breakfast on the street market of Saint Gilles area. Delicious bites from all over the world: fresh vegetable stands are ruled by the absence of endive (the Belgium white gold), unknown cheese varieties, just out of the oven bread rolls, freshly baked potatoes (Flemish fries as they prefer) to take away.
And flea market at Place du Jeu de Balle. Indulge yourself, bargain and you will never leave with empty hands.
And sweets. Belgium is a heaven for everyone with sweet tooth. Chocolate manufactories are teasing you on every corner, the sweet smell of waffle is guiding you to the nearest waffle stand.
And beer. Belgium beer is the Rolls Roys of world beer. In case you are lazy or want to be on the safe side squeeze yourself in the house of thousands beer called “Delirium Tremens”. Check out what your neighbour is drinking and go for it. Unless you are a beer expert and able to choose from the list of 2400 beer and pronounce the name of your most wanted pint.
And what else? The comics, mussels with wine, the royal dynasty, the Atomium, the European Parliament, the heroes of Belgium bike history like Eddy Merckx…but the day is over and Brugge is so close.