Europe during the holiday season is indeed magical (as you may have seen in my previous post). In that department, Brussels did not disappoint. However, my backpack was stolen there, with about 3 grand worth of photography equipment and a brand new pair of Nikes inside. For just a moment, let’s put that aside to appreciate what the city has to offer besides spending a few hours in a police station where no one speaks English. This is the Grand Place, or Grote Markt, and it is the central square of Brussels. The buildings are magnificent, gilded in gold with endless statues. As you can see, it’s beautiful in the day time, but at night, all the building are part of a light display. (Don’t worry, there are videos of it towards the bottom of this post.) Delightful little shops are filled with handmade baked goods and chocolates. There is also quite a bit of street art scattered around.
Delirium Cafe, in a quiet little alley, has over 2,000 beers on tap. Once you step inside, this place is anything but quiet. Live music and tons of drinkers fill the tables and memorabilia fills the walls and ceilings. As promised, here is the Grote Markt at night. Watch the videos below to see how creative the Belgians are with their Christmas lights.
Last but not least, the site of the robbery–just outside Atomium. This structure was built for The World’s Fair in 1958. Believe it or not, you can climb stairs to each one of the 9 iron atoms (although they are not all open to the public). Inside is a museum and several interesting art displays. It was designed to celebrate the Atomic Age. Originally, Atomium was meant to stand for only six months, but due to its popularity, it is still sits happily overlooking the city.
So long city of shoe-thieves! I’ll never forget you.