Information & Facts
Things to do
Brussels boasts one of the most impressive collections of architecture of any European city. A perfect cheap weekend breaks to Brussels from Ireland are perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth - it's a well-known fact among many chocolate lovers that Belgian chocolate is one of the best in the world. Enjoy the best of shopping in Brussels ranging from large department stores to small market squares with last minute city break & short break deals to Brussels.
Brussels has a maritime temperate climate, characterised by warm summers and mild winters. The city has a high average annual rainfall, and visitors can expect a downpour any time of year. Temperatures range from highs of around 80°F (27°C) in summer to 45°F (7°C) during the middle of winter. Snow is possible, but not frequent, in winter.
The Flemish, in the north, speak Dutch (60% of the population); the Walloons in the south speak French (40%). Brussels is bilingual, the majority of citizens speaking French. In the east there is a small German-speaking community. English is also spoken.
Euro (EUR) divided into 100 cents. Most credit cards are accepted (Visa, American Express, Diners Club and Eurcard) as are travellers cheques (though it is best to carry them in Euros, US dollars or Pounds Sterling to avoid additional charges when exchanging). ATMs are available in all major cities. Banks are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm, and are closed on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Some banks close for an hour during lunch. There are however some foreign exchange offices that trade on Sundays.
Brussels is packed tight with historic buildings, monuments and museums making a nearly impossibly long list of worthwhile attractions. The best way to sightsee in Brussels is to pick several personal niche interests and follow a tourist map accordingly. Comic book fan? - there is a museum for you; chocolate connoisseur (who isn't)? - another for you. In fact, there are nearly 75 great museums in Brussels alternating between explaining Belgium's long history, showcasing its art and architecture, and just plain fun (more often than not, doing all three at once). Of course, several city landmarks cannot be missed, the most important is a visit to Mannekin-Pis, which when read carefully accurately describes the statue of a boy peeing. After that rather weird tradition, visitors are free to roam Brussels' larger highlights mostly walkable from the heart of Brussels, the Grand Place. The ancient Hotel de Ville is Brussels best example of early architecture and is almost as grand a sight as the Royal Palace. Several of the best museums in the world include the Museum of Ancient Art and the Museum of Modern Art, both housing Brussels best art treasures. For the rest, much like the Belgians, relax, enjoy and take it all in between pints of the city's best attraction, Belgium beer.
Local time in Belgium is GMT +1 (GMT +2 from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October).