Monday, May 28, 2012

Brussels

The Guild houses on the Grand Place

It was a whirlwind visit to Brussels. All I had was five hours to roam the city and with waning light, it was a challenge. I was hungry as well having spent a few hours traveling by TGV from Amsterdam. So after checking in at the hotel, I walked to the Grand Place where the world congregates when they are in Brussels. The flower market was just folding up for the day but the artists still had their pastels on display, waiting wistfully for a buyer or three. The cafés were bustling on this warm and sunny day and it was wonderful to see people from around the globe pose in front of the beautiful and historical guildhouses from the 17th century.


Belgium is famous for its beers boasting more than 600 types produced by 178 breweries in the country (this according to belgian-beer.net). I'm not sure if the shop above carries 250 different brands of beer but if they do, that's quite a feat. I'm not much of a beer drinker but many years ago I tried their cherry beer and enjoyed it.


Belgium is also known for its lace and chocolates - Godiva, Neuhaus, Guylian, and so on. Around Easter, the shop windows are particularly a magnet for kids with its display of chocolate easter eggs and bunnies. Who can resist? And speaking of treats, this bakery (below) must be fined for its sweet temptations!


After dark I went back to the Grand Place to check out the scene and was I amply rewarded!

The Town Hall

It isn't really about the quantity of time you spend in a place. It's all about the quality of the experience that will stay with you long after you've gone.

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Images by Charie

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