Types of Tourism in Belgium
Despite the fact that Belgium is difficult to rank among the most popular resort countries in Western Europe, there are opportunities for a beach holiday here. Sandy beaches with a total length of about 70 km stretch along the entire Belgian coast of the North Sea with the resorts of Knokke, De Haan, Westende, Oostende. The swimming season here is short – it depends on the capricious Atlantic, and therefore lasts only from mid-June to mid-September.
The most famous resort here is Oostende, its beaches and dunes are the perfect place to spend a hot day and a romantic evening. In addition, recreation here is possible almost all year round – in the town of De Haan, located 20 kilometers from Ostend, one of the water parks of the Sun Parks International system has been built. It provides almost a complete set of beach facilities in a gated complex – up to surfing – in the pools, ocean waves are simulated, rolling on swimmers every 15 minutes. Solariums help to get a completely southern tan in strictly prescribed doses, and for the accommodation of guests a real hotel complex has been built here, consisting of cozy villas. Check top-medical-schools.org for travel information in Belgium.
This type of vacation is also economical – a week of rest for the three of us here will cost 900 – 1200 dollars with meals.
The most famous resort in Belgium is Spa (Spa), located in the east of the kingdom, not far from Liege. In the city, known for its mineral water sources, in addition to balneological health centers, there is the “Museum of the City of Waters” and a gallery with works by artists who captured local landscapes.
What to See in Belgium
The main tourist attraction in Belgium is Brussels , which the locals affectionately call “Little Paris”. Getting into this city, quite large by European standards (with its suburbs, its population reaches 3 million people), the tourist immediately plunges into the atmosphere of an “open-air museum”, where magnificent architectural ensembles of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance seem to be watching the ebullient rhythm of the life of the capital Europe.
You can wander endlessly along the cobbled streets of the historic city center, discovering more and more charms of ancient Brussels. You should definitely visit the Central Square with the Town Hall, the King’s House, stroll through the Brussels Park, where you can take pictures against the backdrop of the Royal Palace and the Palace of Justice. Then you need to look into the famous “Failure”, which is nothing more than an illuminated well with exhibits of the Museum of Modern Art on display in it.
In summer, you can take part in the annual “Ommeganga” procession , which is a historical remembrance of the celebration held on June 2, 1549 in honor of the imperial family.
Incomparable in terms of Gothic architecture are the Cathedral of St. Michael, the Palace of the States General and the building of the Brussels Stock Exchange.
Fine art lovers should not miss a visit to the Royal Museum of Fine Arts with an extensive collection of masterpieces of world art, including many paintings by Rubens himself.
Well, and finally, it’s a sin to visit Belgium and not see its symbol – Manneken Pis, or Manneken Pis, the national hero of Belgium, whose wardrobe is one of the richest in the world.
For travelers in a hurry, Brussels presents a unique chance – to appreciate the most famous and beautiful buildings in Europe, though reduced by exactly 25 times, on the territory of the Mini-Europe park, where the Eiffel and the Leaning Towers of Pisa are only a few steps apart.
Antwerp , the second most important city in the country and the largest Dutch-speaking city in the world, in addition to the standard set of medieval architectural structures, is widely known for its diamond cutting enterprises. To visit here and not visit at least one of the jewelry stores is nonsense, even if buying jewelry abroad is not included in your plans.
In addition, you should definitely take a walk through the Southern Quarter – the most beautiful historical part of the city.
Bruges, the capital of West Flanders, appears in almost every tourist route in Belgium, because to miss this seaside pearl is simply blasphemous. Here, like nowhere else in Belgium, the influence of the Netherlands is felt – starting with the canals that divide the city like Amsterdam, and ending with fish menus in restaurants and cafes in the city. Therefore, the first thing upon arrival here is to take a boat trip along the city canals, enjoying the views of one of the most significant ports of medieval Europe. Then, having been filled with impressions, you should take a short tour of the restaurants of Bruges, gaining strength for a walk along the patriarchal streets of the city, fragrant with floral aromas and the smell of heated cobbled stone. Of the architectural sights worth noting City Museum of Fine Arts (the famous Groninge Museum) and the Hans Memling Museum in the building of the Sint-Jans hospital, go to the old market square with buildings of the XIII century and a magnificent 83-meter watchtower.
The number of preserved medieval castles is simply amazing. Among the most interesting are the following:
– Steen Castle in Antwerp. The construction of this stone giant began in the 9th century and continued for quite a long time. It currently houses the National Museum of Shipping.
– Spontin Castle, the oldest castle in Belgium, located in a valley, on an island, in the middle of the leisurely Bok River. Experts consider it a model of fortified architecture; using it as an example, one can get acquainted with the changes in building styles – from early Gothic to the mature Renaissance. The fortress houses collections of art objects, collections of porcelain and faience.
– Van Ooydonk Castle. The village of Oidonk is lost in the hilly valley of the Lane River. To the Van Ooydonk castle itself, probably the most beautiful in all of Belgium, a beautiful linden alley leads. According to popular belief, the castle is the pearl of Spanish-Flemish architecture of the 16th century.
But limit the visit to Belgium just visiting its largest cities is not worth it. In almost every local village, both monuments of ancient architecture and local traditions have been preserved, the best way to get acquainted with them is to sit on a bicycle and slowly drive through this small European country, staying in hospitable small hotels and tasting local beer.