10/26/2022     by Justin Gibson

Can’t-Miss Sites of Brussels

As the capital of Belgium and the administrative center of Europe, Brussels doesn’t receive quite the same fanfare as, say, Paris or Berlin or Amsterdam or London. But that global oversight is your gain: This is a city full of life, culture and delights. Here are just a few highlights to introduce you to the joy of visiting Brussels.

Royal Greenhouse of Laeken

Royal Greenhouses of Laeken

If there is one place in all of Brussels that is truly “can’t miss,” it would be the Royal Greenhouses of Laeken. Originally constructed by King Leopold in the late 19th century, this indoor oasis spans 30 pavilions — though the king’s jewel of the grounds is the main complex, the Winter Gardens. Here, far-flung tropical plants mingle with azaleas and geraniums to paint a lush scene. The Royal Greenhouses are only open to the public for two weeks a year in late April and early May; luckily, that’s just in time for the spring blooming of the greenhouse’s flowers.  

Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art

Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art

There are art museums, there are contemporary art museums, and sometimes, if you’re lucky, there are spaces that seem to pave the way for what’s next. Such is the case for the Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art, or MIMA for short. Located in the former Bellevue brewery on the bank of the Brussels canal, the MIMA specializes in what they call “culture 2.0” — graffiti, skateboarding, graphics, hacking and anything that sprang to life since the catalyzing invention of the internet. There’s a permanent display highlighting the works of culture 2.0 pioneers (think Banksy, Barry McGee, Invader, Parra and Mobstr), as well as two temporary exhibitions that rotate each year. Art lovers and digital natives alike are sure to enjoy a stroll through these curious halls.

St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral

St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral

Someone online once made the point that “things around you weren’t just always there; people made them happen. The world is a museum of passion projects.” In this light, even the most agnostic of us can recognize that cathedrals are proper miracles. The St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral is no exception: It took over 300 years in the 13th century to create. Today, it’s a testament to the Gothic style — despite near-constant sacking by French revolutionaries and iconoclast protestants, the cathedral’s stained-glass windows shine multicolored beams into the splendid interior. Whether you’re coming for a stroll or a sit, a trip to the national church of Belgium is likely to inspire awe.




Of all the jazz joints in all the towns in all the world, you should probably walk into this one. This art deco establishment has been staging nightly performances since 1937, meaning all the all-time greats have passed through here at one point or another. Sitting in the booth that once maybe seated Miles Davis or Nat King Cole, a strong cocktail in hand and smooth jazz piano serenading you — the space transcends timely trends. It’s hard not to feel cool here.

Did this get you brainstorming what your next getaway might be? Your getaway may prove quite a bit sweeter when it’s with Norwegian Cruise Line; spacious suites, plentiful dining options and award-winning entertainment comprise your home-away-from-home as you port-hop between the likes of London, Amsterdam, Brussels and Reykjavik. The only thing that could be better than a trip to a fascinating European metropolis? A trip to several — trust one of our travel agents to help make it happen. Not only can they provide years of professional trip-planning expertise, but thanks to working relationships with the leading names in travel, they can also often provide exclusive perks and discounts.


Connect with a travel agent today to book your next getaway with Norwegian Cruise Line.


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