Suggestions for spending 24, 48 and 72 hours in Brussels

The Brussels Card entitles you to free admission to no less than 39 museums plus discounts with 27 tourism partners. Can’t decide which ones to visit? Don't worry, the following routes will help you on your way! Of course, these are just suggestions, so feel free to explore your own choices. But don't forget: the more places you visit, the more you save!

Spend 24 hours in Brussels and the Brussels Card will save you -> €11!  

Brussels historic centre is relatively small and very easy to discover on foot. 24 hours in Brussels is not very long (there's so much to see!!), but it's certainly long enough to visit some of the highlights. So put on your walking shoes, indulge in a hearty breakfast and off we go!

10 a.m. Start the day at the Grand Place, UNESCO World Heritage site and without a doubt one of the most beautiful squares in the world. Take time to admire the stunning façades: the Neo-Gothic King's House (known as the Broodhuis - Bread House), City Hall with its impressive 96 metre-high tower and the 16th century Brewers' House. Pay a visit to Choco-Story, on the corner of the Grand Place, a Valhalla for chocolate addicts. Here you will learn all about this black gold and are also treated to a tasting! Don't forget to say a quick hello to Manneken Pis, the most charismatic guy in Brussels, a brief stroll from the Grand Place.

12 p.m. Climb the hill, via the lovely Mont des Arts Park, in the direction of Place Royale, home to several of the most well-known Brussels museums. Take a break at the Calder fountain at the top of the steps and admire the wonderful view of the city below (selfie time!). A little further up you will find the world-famous, ornate, Art Nouveau façade of the Musical Instruments Museum. Visit the museum, which boasts one of the most varied collections of instruments in the world! Have lunch in the museum's panoramic restaurant, with its terrace and breathtaking views. Coffee at the end of your meal is included with your Brussels Card.

2.30 p.m. It's time for one of the most popular attractions in Brussels, the Magritte Museum, a few paces away. The museum, which is part of the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium (which encompasses the Old Masters Museum and the Fin-de-Siècle Museum, also included in the Brussels Card), displays an extraordinary collection of works by one of the most famous surrealists of all time. Get ready for a remarkable trip!

4 p.m. Leave Place Royale via the Brussels Park (Parc de Bruxelles), a green lung in the centre of Brussels. Before entering the park you will see the Royal Palace on your left, the monarch's 'working residence'. Beyond the park you will pass the striking Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula. Descend the steps at the statue of Gaston Lagaffe and you end up at the Belgian Comic Strip Center, another of Brussels' smash hits. The museum, housed in a former Art Nouveau warehouse designed by Victor Horta, is the Mecca for comic book fans, exhibiting a permanent collection as well as lots of temporary exhibitions.

6 p.m. Head back to the Grand Place via the superbly renovated Royal Galleries of Saint Hubert, one of the most charming covered galleries in Europe. Ideal for some (window) shopping or for soaking up the atmosphere on a terrace!

Day 1    

 

without Brussels Card with Brussels Card
Choco-Story Brussels 6€ 0€
Musical Instruments Museum 8€ 0€
Panoramic restaurant - coffee 3€ 0€
Magritte Museum 8€ 0€
Belgian Comic Strip Center 10€ 0€
1 Brussels Card 24h   24€
Total 35 € 24 €
You save 11 €

 

Spend 48 hours in Brussels and the Brussels Card will save you -> €29!

If you have 48 hours to spend in Brussels you can also visit a number of fascinating places of interest outside the centre. If you do, it is definitely worth considering the 'public transport'* option!

10 a.m. Today we are going to explore another popular Brussels attraction: the Parc du Cinquantenaire/Jubelpark. The site was constructed in 1880 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Belgium's independence. The central Triumphal Arch is an eye-catcher (with a beautiful view, entrance to the Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and Military History) located next to three of the largest museums in Brussels: the Cinquantenaire/Jubelpark Museum, Royal Museum of the Armed Forces and Military History and Autoworld.  It's difficult to choose between the three museums - especially since the Brussels Card entitles you to free admission to all three - but this time we've opted for Autoworld and its fabulous collection of cars, from classic cars to the most modern sports cars. The easiest way to get to Autoworld is from Mérode underground station (a five-minute walk away).

12 p.m. From cars to the dinosaurs of the Museum of Natural Sciences! Stroll back to Mérode, from where you take bus 80 and get off at the 'Museum' stop. The Museum of Natural Sciences is a real crowd-puller, so you'll have to make some difficult choices. Don't miss Bernissart's world-famous iguanodons, but the Evolution Gallery and the BiodiverCITY room are also worth a visit! You could opt to have lunch in the DinoCafé.

3 p.m. From here we return to the centre, for a different kind of journey back in time: the turbulent history of Brussels and its most famous resident: Manneken Pis! The Museum of the City of Brussels is located right on the Grand Place, in the enchanting King's House, also known as the Bread House. Here you will find amazing retables (the best and most beautiful of their kind in medieval times!), and paintings and tapestries that transport you back to the Brussels of their era. And you can also admire the original statue of Manneken Pis here! If you want to examine his extensive wardrobe, head for the Wardrobe of Manneken Pis, 200 metres away, opposite the famous fountain, and also free with the Brussels Card.

5 p.m. Shopping time! Around the Grand Place and in the Royal Galleries of Saint Hubert you will find lots of shops where you can hunt for souvenirs to your heart's content. Your Brussels Card entitles you to discounts in some of the chocolate shops, among other establishments. Or succumb to the temptation of a delicious portion of chips from Fritland near the Brussels Stock Exchange (with a free portion of sauce worth €1).

Day 2    

 

without Brussels Card with Brussels Card
Day 1 (see above) 35€ 0€
Autoworld 10€ 0€
Museum of Natural Sciences 7€ 0€
Museum of the City of Brussels 8€ 0€
Fritland – sauce 1€ 0€
1 Brussels Card 48h   32€
Total 61€ 32 €
You save 29 €

 

Spend 72 hours in Brussels and the Brussels Card will save you -> €47.50!

Now the fun really begins! Explore less well-known parts of Brussels too, such as the Canal Zone, Koekelberg, Elsene/Ixelles, Vorst/Forest and so on. It's all possible, and the 'public transport'* option is definitely recommended if you stay this long!

10 a.m.  Start the day with the Brussels icon, the Atomium! The nine mythical spheres are witnesses of the Brussels World's Fair (Expo 58). Get ready for a surreal walk through tubes and spheres. The uppermost sphere offers a captivating view of Brussels and far beyond! The Atomium is easy to reach on the underground ('Heysel' stop). Extra tip: if you still have time, pay a visit to Mini-Europe (discount) and/or the Planetarium (free with your Card), both are located within walking distance from the Atomium and are an absolute must!

12 p.m. Walk back to the 'Heysel' underground stop and take underground line 6 to 'Simonis'. Walk through the park (the perfect spot for a picnic) to the National Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Koekelberg, the fifth largest church in the world and the largest Art Deco building ever built. The Basilica is free to visit. The Panorama, at a height of 52.8m, can be visited for a fee, but your Brussels Card entitles you to 40% discount.

2 p.m. From the Basilica it is just a 10-minute walk to the Aquarium of Brussels, a museum with a mission! The 48 aquariums introduce you to over 250 species of small water creatures from all over the world. The museum explores major environmental issues in more depth, such as the effects of pollution on the oceans.

3.30 p.m. Take bus 49 (from the 'Bossaert-Basilique' stop) to the 'Cimetière de Molenbeek' (Molenbeek Cemetery) stop and walk 100m to tram 82, which you ride until the 'Triangle' stop. You are now in the Canal Zone, one of the upcoming neighbourhoods in Brussels. Your destination is the MIMA, a five-minute walk, the ultimate hotspot for alternative and urban culture in Brussels. This former brewery has been converted into a vibrant museum, dedicated to what it calls 'culture 2.0': street art, graffiti, comic books and so on. Stroll further along the canal (with its colourful flags), soak up the atmosphere of an unpolished part of Brussels and then cross the bridge over the canal to return to the centre via the rue de Flandre or rue Antoine Dansaert, full of trendy shops.

6 p.m. End your day of wanderings with a Brussels beer and a cream cheese open sandwich (a Brussels speciality) in La Mort Subite, a monument of a pub, where the atmosphere transports you back to days gone by. Coffee after your meal is free with your Brussels Card.

Day 3    

 

without Brussels Card with Brussels Card
Day 1 (see above) 35€  
Day 2 (see above) 26€  
Atomium – discount +3€ 0€
Koekelberg Basicila – Panorama – discount +2€ 0€
Aquarium of Brussels 8,5€ 0€
MIMA 9,5€ 0€
A La Mort Subite – coffee 2,5€ 0€
1 Brussels Card 72h   39€
Total 86,50 € 39 €
You save 47,50 €

 

* The public transport price (STIB/MIVB) price advantage has not been calculated in the above routes. If you add transport to your 24, 48 or 72 hour Brussels Card (a supplement of €7.5, €14 and €18 respectively on top of the price of the regular Brussels Card), you benefit from an additional discount of €5: the €5 fee, usually charged for producing the transport ticket does not have to be paid if you opt for a 'Brussels Card + public transport'.