10 things to do in Brussels (see locations on a map)
- Grand Place
- Manneken Pis
- Cantillon Brewery
- Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium
- Laeken Palace
- Belgian Centre of Comic Strip Art
- Le Chocolatier Manon
- Parc de Bruxelles
- Galeries Saint-Hubert
- Comme Chez Soi
- Maison du Cygne
- Castello Banfi
- Aux Armes de Bruxelles
- The Blue Elephant
- L'Idiot du Village
- La Truffe Noire
- Mappa Mundo
"Brussel sprout was first cultivated in large quantities in Belgium as early as 1587"
More on Brussels
Brussels has a history of hosting the EU's institutions. The city plays host to the official seats of the European Commission (in the Berlaymont building) and the Council of the European Union (in the Justus Lipsius building facing it). Furthermore three quarters of the work of the European Parliament takes place in the city at its Brussels hemicycle (its official seat is Strasbourg).
Brussels contains over 40 museums, including the Museum of Modern Art. The city has hosted various fairs and conferences, including the fifth Solvay Conference in 1927 and two world fairs - the 1935 world fair and the Expo '58. The Atomium, a 103-metre (338 ft) representation of an iron crystal was built for the Expo '58, and is still open to the public
Brussels is officially bilingual, French and Dutch. French, the mother tongue of the majority of the population, is the lingua franca and the most widely used language in Brussels, although local Brabantian dialects of Dutch once used to dominate. Research in the city's archives shows that Dutch was by far the most widely used language in both the population and the local administration until the French occupation (1793-1815), even though French had been the language of the local governors since the Burgundian era.
The best bar crawl is down rue du Marché au Charbon - the spine of the gay district - where every other building houses a lively drinking place. Brussels' reputation as a clubbing town is all down to one club: the Fuse, which is also home to the mega gay club La Demence. There is also an impressive underground scene. Check noctis for club information.