Our girls weekend away
If I had known how quick and easy it is to get from London to Brussel via Eurostar, I would have gone a lot sooner. This was a last minute girly get away with my cousins and my sis. We all wanted to get away for a weekend and we all share a mutual love for Churros and mulled wine. Brussels in late November/December is perfect for that as the Christmas market opens up late November.
I have to thank my cousin who arranged everything. We stayed in a modern apartment with very interesting decor. Conveniently it was just a short walk from Central and not too far from the main train station. The area itself was lovely, however our Air bnb host warned us that there are areas which are still up and coming and not safe to walk through. This made me feel a little bit nervous but of course we found it very safe in Brussels, police were always around and we were sensible with our belongings.
Christmas lights – Grand Place
If you have been to Brussels recently, then you too like myself have probably gone home and downloaded Sia’s Christmas album on your Spotify. The Grand place is the main attraction of Brussels and around this time of year they hold a light show in the Square where the magnificent buildings light up in colourful lights which synchronised with songs from Sia’s Christmas album. The square was packed with many tourists who have travelled to Brussels just for the Christmas markets. The experience was overwhelming, emotional and really got me in the Christmas spirit.
All I could smell was Christmas. Rich aromas of mulled wine, sausages and Churros filled the cold air. The gorgeous market stalls were lit up with festive decorations, selling things like handcrafted presents and Christmas baubles. For the beer lovers, there was a huge outdoor beer garden which looked very warm and inviting. But I’m more of a mulled wine kind of girl so we walked around with mulled wines in hands to warm us up.
We were spoilt for choice with places to eat. However I would advise that to get into a nice restaurant you should book ahead as it was quite busy and the average waiting time was 20 minutes at most places. My favourite place we went for Brunch was Houtsiplou Cafe & Restaurant. It just so happened to across the road from where we stayed, unfortunately we only discovered it on the very last day before we were due to catch our train home, otherwise I think we would have had breakfast there everyday. This spot is a hipster’s dream. The walls were covered in beautiful cartoon art, something you can imagine seeing in Camden or Shoreditch. The menu had a good variety of choices, from mussels to impressive tower burgers.
Mussels in Brussels
Brussels has many places to eat. We even managed find Vietnamese food. But what I was really looking forward to was a good pot of mussels as Brussels is famous for their mussels. I was not disappointed when we chose to enjoy a pre-dinner munch and drink at Brussels Brasserie BB situated in Grand place. We sat on the third floor so had a great view of the square, just in time for the light show. Between us we had mulled wine and Beer with our mussels and calamari, it was just perfection.
We enjoyed drinks at a small bar called Groupil Le Foul through recommendation. I was fascinated to say the least. It was creepy but kind of cool, dark, very small and there was not an an inch of wall or ceiling that wasn’t covered with some sort of art or picture. There wasn’t a massive variety of cocktails but I was more than happy with a G&T and the company. This bar isn’t for everyone but I liked that it was cosy and full of interesting things to look at.
Can we go again?
I fell in love with Brussels and I feel like there’s still so many places to explore. There’s lots of interesting bars and restaurants I’d like to try. My short blog does not cover what a lovely trip this was. I will definitely be going again and I may make this a Christmas tradition. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas, may your bellies be full of mince pies and mulled wine!
All my love,