Things you see in Brussels

Brussels Travel Blog

 › entry 4 of 354 › view all entries
Situated on the northern outskirts of Brussels, between the royal estates of Laeken and Stuyvenbergh, and the chaussée romaine, the former Osseghem plateau consisted of meadows and fields during the nineteenth century.

In the city there are some must see's and one of them is the Atomium - that was built for the world fair in 1958 - and it was designed by André Waterkeyes. The Brussels World’s Fair was held from 17 April to 19 October 1958 and hosted more than 42 million visitors. It was the first major world exposition after the war; the previous world’s fair had been held in New York in 1939, when the German troops were invading Poland. The Atomium has currently been renovated and it is is situated next to Bruparck amusement park at Boulevard du Centenaire. 

The Atomium is probably the most significant sign of Brussels, just as the Eiffel tower is for Paris. Everyone of the nine balls is 18 meters wide.

The traffic is killing in Bruxelles - you have to relax otherwise....
The escalators installed inside the tubes of the Atomium are amongst the longest in Europe. The largest is 114.8 ft long. They can take 3,000 persons per hour. The elevator speed • the highest in Europe • is 16.4 ft/sec. It takes visitors up to the top sphere in 23 seconds and its capacity is 22 persons. The entrence is 9€ but only 6€ if you are a student.


One of the thing that you don't wanna see but that you cannot avoid - is the traffic. The traffic in Brussels is tight and blocked every morning and afternoon. Amazingly the locals take in easy there is a understanding that nothing can be done in order to improve the situation. You just hang in there - you almost never hear anyone use their horn - there is just this quiet acceptance of the matter.

I have to laught at the traffic every morning, because they are sending out police officers in almost every crossing in the inner city. Every police officer have their own way of solving the traffic problem in their unique cross. The effect of this is that the light are only guiding and this means that the traffic is more blocked than it would be if they where not there. Sometimes the police is only concentrating on writing fines. The traffic is totally out of control and they just stand and write down license plates to give you a fine.

Parking is another fantastic story of Brussels - you just park your car whereever you feel there is space for you - in a roundabout is a perfect spot - even crossings will work. The worst area for this is in the evening in Ixelles. There is only one rule - go for it. In the beginning I was driving round to find a parking space. Today a just make a "Brussel" - but don't do it in other cities in Belgium, because there are other local rules in every other city. 

By the way I have just got my first fine - it had to come ! I was parked in a pedestrian crossing, it was not that bad it was just with my front wheels there.

missandrea81 says:
Thank you for the tip, Christian. It will come in handy for sure. :)
Posted on: Jul 29, 2012
Chokk says:
Andrea, it is not that difficult to park and drive this time of year and especially if you will be there in a weekend. Atomium is quite far from the city center - I would always take a hotel near Avenue Louise because you can find free parking there in the weekends.

It depends on what you are looking for. Please give me some more info and I will try to be more precise. Brussels is usually empty in the weekend and therefore you will be able to make good deals.
Posted on: Jul 28, 2012
missandrea81 says:
Interesting stuff. I'm wondering where I should be looking for a hotel in the city, if I wanna see the Atomium and Mini Europe... Any suggestions? Somewhere were we can leave the car and just use public transportation would be fantastic.
Posted on: Jul 28, 2012
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Situated on the northern outskirts…
Situated on the northern outskirt…
The traffic is killing in Bruxelle…
The traffic is killing in Bruxell…
photo by: Vlindeke