Explore the best of Brussels in one day from the iconic Grand Place to fascinating museums and stunning historical monuments. With convenient walking and public transportation, this one-day plan promises an unforgettable journey through the heart of Brussels.
Note: The estimated time below includes the travel time between attractions, whether by walking or using public transportation.
9:00 am – Grand Place (and streets around)
Start your morning at the breathtaking Grand Place, the historic central square of Brussels. The architecture of Grand Place in Brussels is a stunning display of medieval and Renaissance design. The square is surrounded by opulent guildhalls, each showcasing unique facades with intricate carvings, sculptures, and decorative elements.
The Town Hall, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture, stands proudly at one end of the square, adorned with a striking tower and ornate windows. The King’s House (Maison du Roi) complements the ensemble with its lavish Neo-Gothic style and elegant arcades.
Better to come early morning to take pictures with fewer people. Remember to enjoy your morning coffee or tea in the square! Several guildhalls open cafes early in the morning, offering a fantastic view with fewer crowds.
10:00 am – Manneken Pis
From Grand Place, take a short walk to see the famous Manneken Pis statue. Snap a photo with this beloved Brussels icon and discover the stories behind its many costumes.
10:30 am – Royal Gallery of Saint Hubert
Continue your walk to the elegant Royal Gallery of Saint Hubert, where you can explore the beautiful glass-roofed arcade filled with shops and cafes.
11:30 am – St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral
Walk to the impressive St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral to marvel at its stunning Gothic architecture and stained glass windows.
12:00 pm – Lunch
Enjoy a delicious Belgian lunch at a local restaurant, savoring Belgian specialties and regional delights. In central Brussels, you’ll find an abundance of restaurants, so there’s no need to worry about finding a place for lunch.
However, be mindful that some restaurants in picturesque streets may be pricier. It’s advisable to steer clear of restaurants with staff standing at the entrance, eagerly inviting you inside, as they tend to be more expensive.
2:30 pm – Mont des Arts
Stroll to Mont des Arts, where you can capture breathtaking panoramic views of Brussels and relax in the picturesque gardens.
3:30 pm – Old Masters Museum (in The Royal Museums of Fine Arts)
The Royal Museums of Fine Arts consist of six museums and one of them is the Old Masters Museum. It showcases masterpieces by renowned artists like Rogier van der Weyden, Petrus Christus, Dirk Bouts, Hans Memling, Hieronymus Bosch, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, and Jacques Jordaens, Lucas Cranach, and Gerard David.
Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s sixteenth-century works, such as “The Fall of the Rebel Angels” and “The Census at Bethlehem,” add further magnificence to the exhibit.
We estimated the time to spend here is at least 2 hours to fully appreciate the renowned masterpieces.
5:30pm – Free Time
Take some time to explore the nearby area, indulge in coffee and pastries, or shop for souvenirs at local boutiques, and find a place for dinner!
As you explore its streets, you’ll encounter a rich tapestry of designs, ranging from medieval to Gothic, Baroque to Art Nouveau, and even modern marvels.
7:30 – Dinner
Treat yourself to a delightful dinner at a restaurant of your choice, enjoying the rich flavors of Belgian cuisine.
9:00 pm – Beer Time
Embark on an evening stroll through Brussels’ illuminated streets, embracing the city’s lively nightlife and warm ambiance.
For beer enthusiasts, head to the Halles Saint-Géry where you’ll find a plethora of cozy pubs and bars offering a wide selection of Belgium’s famous beers.
10:00 pm – Return to Grand Place
End your day back at Grand Place, reminiscing about the wonderful sights and experiences of Brussels.
This one-day sightseeing plan offers a perfect blend of cultural landmarks, art, and delightful culinary experiences for adult travelers. Conveniently accessible by walking or public transportation, this itinerary allows you to make the most of your day in Brussels, creating cherished memories of this vibrant and culturally rich city.