This post is about my recent trip to Brussels, Belgium. Once again I used the magical transportation that is the Eurostar to get from London to Brussels. My best friend, Carmen & I forced ourselves out of bed at the crack of dawn to get the earliest train and BAM- just like that we were in Brussels in time for breakfast!
My first reaction to this city was that it looked like something out of an old fashioned story book. The small medieval town that has cobbled streets and gothic architecture is filled with chocolatiers and sweet shops. Although Brussels is beautiful, there is not a great deal to do once you have eaten your way through the city.
The Grand Place, also known as Grote Markt is the central square in Brussels where most of the action is. During the summer they lay a flower carpet down and it is magical! If you are a tourist, The Grand Place will be your starting point. The cobbled square houses two of the city’s main attractions, the town hall and the Museum of the City of Brussels. Also in this center are a few chocolatiers, travel offices if you are in need of any guidance and of course, a Starbucks! When I first saw there was a Starbucks I laughed but it actually proved to be very handy when in need of Wifi because barely anywhere has it.
We didn’t waste any time searching for Brussel’s best chocolatier. We tasted chocolates from shops all over the Grand Place and the little side streets surrounding it. Most of the chocolatiers will give you free tasters! We had heard from a few friends that had visited Brussels in the past that Pierre Marcolini was the by far the best and is considered a “haute chocolatier”.
The next few hours consisted of Carmen and I walking around Brussels, lost and trying desperately to find someone who spoke english. It was surprising to me that a country just a couple of hours away from England hardly had any english speakers. After wandering aimlessly around the city, we decided to head back to our trusty Starbucks in the Grand Place where we could at least get some Wifi and find directions.
Once we finally found Pierre Marcolini, it proved to be worth the hours of roaming around. Pierre Marcolini is the Chanel of chocolate. The gorgeous shop is 3 stories. The first floor serves chocolates and their fresh macaroons, the second floor is like a chocolate tasting wonderland and the third floor is a cafe. The customer service is impeccable and most of the employees actually spoke english! I headed up to the second floor where you can make your own box of chocolates which is the perfect souvenir for family and friends back home. While designing my boxes of chocolate, the helpful employees explained the ingredients of each chocolate and gave me so many samples that I didn’t even need to make one for my self! I was absolutely chocolate wasted! We proceeded to the cafe where we both indulged in the best hot chocolate I’ve ever had in my life. I still dream about it.
For the next few hours we powered through our food coma in the effort to work off some chocolate and get hungry again, because we couldn’t possibly leave Belgium without trying a Belgian waffle. We walked around for hours and got lost down the tiny streets and stumbled across the famous “Manneken Pis” which is a statue of a little boy peeing. I am not sure what the big deal is about this tiny statue which is only around 2 feet but it is the most famous monument in Brussels.
The last thing we did in Brussels was finally get our waffle. I had done a lot of research about Belgium’s best waffle before hand so we had it all planned out. “Maison Dandoy” is located on Rue au Beurre which appropriately translates to Butter Road.
All I can say about the next 30 minuets is that there was no talking involved. It is the most silent Carmen and I have ever been. You will understand why by the photos. There are two types of Belgian waffles; Brussels & Liege. Carmen and I went for the Liege waffles which are much fluffier and sweeter. Brussels waffles are thinner and in my opinion not as tasty. I went for a simple caramel waffle and Carmen had melted Belgian chocolate and strawberries. Both solid choices, but I’m sure anything on the menu is to die for!
Thats it for my post on Brussels! I hope you guys make it there on day Xx