Belgium, Travel
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Brussels

There are a lot of school holidays here in France, the first of which was a two-week break for the Toussaint (All Saints) at the end of October. We decided to go on a big road trip up to Belgium and Holland and do a little exploring while the kids were on holiday. We were a bit limited by Derek’s work schedule as well as an appointment with the French Immigration Office to finalize our visas with the Titre de Séjour (mission: accomplished! Yay!). But we still managed to carve out 9 days, and we had a great trip.

Our first stop was in Brussels for a quick two nights, and for us it wound up being just the right amount of time. We had a great AirBnB in Ixelles, just south of downtown Brussels in a fairly swanky shopping area, and it took just a quick metro to get to the centre of town.

brussels street view

This whole wide street was blocked off from cars, with logs and rustic platforms to sit and hang out.

This whole wide street was blocked off from cars, with logs and rustic platforms to sit and hang out.

Our only solid plan for our one full day in Brussels was to go to the Comic Strip Museum (which I’ll save for another post). Other than that, we went up to the northern part of town to have a look at the Atomium, built for the 1958 World Fair. We found some fun playgrounds for the kids to run wild, and then ended our day in the old centre part of town in Grande Place, which is super touristy of course, but also really striking. We happened upon some amazing street music, one of my favourite things about Europe. There were some cool shops to check out, and we ate our fair share of chocolate, waffles, and frites, as you do.

Here are some more pics from the day.

The kids at the end of the giant Welcome sign, in front of the Atomium.

The kids at the end of the giant Welcome sign, in front of the Atomium.

Oli needed a picture in the O

Oli needed a picture in the O of course!

Great street music in Brussels. This is one of my favourite things about Europe!

Great street music in Brussels. This is one of my favourite things about Europe!

Just one of the many pretty + delicious chocolatiers in Belgium.

Just one of the many pretty + delicious chocolatiers in Belgium.

Lavish golden buildings in Grande Place in Brussels.

Lavish golden buildings in Grande Place in Brussels.

Not the best shot, but happy to have a kind stranger to offer to snap a pic of the whole family in Brussels!

Not the best shot, but happy to have a kind stranger to offer to snap a pic of our whole family in front of the XVII century buildings of Grande Place.

I love the way the light shines in the gothic buildings in the dark.

I love the way the light shines in the gothic buildings in the dark.

Golden hour reflecting on the golden buildings in Grande Place.

Golden hour reflections on golden buildings.

Sunset behind l'Hôtel de Ville in Grande Place.

Sunset behind l’Hôtel de Ville.

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