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Brussels, Belgium: Top 11 Things To Do (One Day Itinerary)

Updated: Apr 6



Most of us know that Belgium is famous for its chocolate … but did you know that the Brussels airport is the largest chocolate selling point in the world?! Not limited to chocolate, Brussels is also famous for its for beer and waffles. Certainly the recipe for a delicious trip! Although we recommend 2 full days in Brussels, below is an itinerary of this great city that can easily be completed in just 24 hours.




Morning in Brussels


1. Start your day at Peck 47

A delicious breakfast café located within a short walking distance to Grand Place. With incredible eggs Benedict, tasty coffee, and a quaint, local atmosphere, Peck 47 will fuel you for a day of adventure around Brussels. You can even order a savory Belgian waffle with eggs Benedict on top!


We recommend getting here early in the morning to avoid waiting in line for a table. The service was friendly, accommodating, and efficient.


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2. Admire the beauty of Saint Nicholas Church

Saint Nicholas is one of the oldest church in Brussels, dating back to the 12th century. With more recent updates throughout, be sure to notice the original 14th century choir stalls as you admire the breathtaking gothic interior. This church is free to enter, easily accessible within the city center, and well worth adding to your trip.



3. Wander around the Grand Place

The heart of Brussels, home of the beautifully ornate City Hall, along with numerous chocolate stores, museums, historic bars, and restaurants. This square shows its wealth in every building and is known to be one of the most beautiful places in the entire world.


Many events, concerts, and markets take place throughout the year in this square. Check out a webcam of the Grand Place to see what events may be happening during your travels.


J&L Recommended: Must visit in Brussels!


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4. Snap a picture of the famous Manneken Pis "Peeing Boy"

You may think we're pulling your leg here, but this is actually one of the most famous attractions in all of Brussels. This is, in fact, a fountain of a little boy peeing. But it is much more than just that. It is a fountain, a mascot, and also the hero of many legends. Manneken Pis is so famous, he has received several gifts from Lords & Kings, and has been abducted (and rescued) several times.


There are many stories as to how this statue came to be. The one we choose to believe is about the boy who saved the city of Brussels. This legend states that the city of Brussels was once surrounded by enemies who pretended to retreat but actually were hiding gunpowder underneath the city. A boy named Julien saw a burning fuse and peed on it, saving the entire city and resulting in a statue to pay him homage.





Afternoon in Brussels


5. Try some Belgian Waffles at Le Funambule

Not just a breakfast treat, Belgians eat waffles any time of day as a meal, a snack, or a delicious dessert. There are two types of Belgian waffles: the Brussels waffle and the Liege waffle. The Brussels waffle (pictured below) is rectangular, flaky, and filled with delicious toppings.


We recommend trying at Le Funambule, a small stand located right next to Manneken Pis with the option to pile on the toppings yourself!


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The Liege waffle has rounded corners, a sugar coating, and dough bursting with so much flavor that you do not need any additional toppings. The best place to try a Liege waffle is at Vitalgaufre. Although the lines may be long at this popular establishment, they move quickly and you will soon be enjoying one of the most delicious waffles you have ever tasted.


Tip: Leige waffles are more authentic, although most tourists prefer Brussels waffles for the temping toppings.


6. Complete your lunch with a salty snack: Frites

Frites are your classic French fries served in a cone and topped with mayo, spicy samurai sauce, or aioli. Did you know French fries are not actually from France?? According to a local, American's are to blame for the credit given to the French for these salty late-night snacks. Of course, the debate still continues today as to where French fries originated, however, we chose to believe our local Belgian friend who confirmed how the confusion began.


The origin of French Fries

During WWII, American soldiers had tried frites in Belgium. When they went back home to America after the war, they told everyone about these amazing snacks called "fries". When their friends asked them where they had discovered these fries, the soldiers replied, "I don't remember, but they were speaking French!". Now you know!


Try Frites: Get your fill of the original French fries at Maison Antoine, one of the best frites stands in all of Belgium.