Uncover the Hidden History of Brussels

There is a lot more to discover about Brussels than beer and bureaucracy
There is a lot more to discover about Brussels than beer and bureaucracy | © Vito Arcomano / Alamy Stock Photo

Brussels has a unique history – and a visit to the city isn’t complete without taking in some of its greatest stories. Culture Trip’s curated list of Brussels tours and experiences take you to the very heart of the Belgian capital.

It may be best known for its beer and bureaucracy, but Brussels has also played a central role in much of Europe’s history. From the Great War to secret societies, these tours give you in-depth knowledge so you can end your trip both informed as well as entertained.

ToursLegends of Brussels (max. 8 participants)
From $24 per person
2 hours 30 minutes
5 (5)
There are various things to experience here: things to see, things to learn, things to taste! I would love to introduce you to Brussels' history and culture.

With its 159 embassies and 2500 diplomats, Brussels is the world's second seat of diplomatic representations. How did this young city acquire a prominent role so rapidly in Europe since the Middle Age? Since its first stone put in 580, Europe has witnessed Brussels' lightning evolution to power. This city has been a capital of numerous territories: Burgundy, Brabant, the Netherlands, Belgium and now Europe. Its refined heritage is prized by so many.

Today, the city is famous for its delicious chocolates and sweets, renowned beer, outstanding architecture and this unique way to continuously surprise you. If you let me introduce you to this legacy, I will make sure you see it, touch it and taste it!

Experiences curated for you

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ToursGhent & Bruges
From $57 per person
10 hours 30 minutes
4 (2112)
Discover Flanders’ two most enchanting cities and follow your guide on his walking tour way back in time! We take you to Ghent. We visit Saint-Bavo’s Cathedral, home to the world-famous Mystic Lamb painting (optional) and walk along the Castle of the Counts of Flanders, the picturesque medieval harbor and many more highlights.
In Bruges, after lunch you enjoy the view of the peaceful Lake of Love and the picturesque Beguinage. Your guide will explain the stories and secrets behind the city’s history from the Viking period until the end of the Middle Ages. You see literally ‘all’ highlights of Bruges: the Basilica of the Holly blood of Jesus, the Belfry tower, our Lady’s Church, Saint John’s hospital etc. You even have the option to enjoy a pleasant boat trip along the narrow canals.
Do not forget your comfortable shoes to brave the cobbled streets!

ToursBrussels: Mysteries and Legends Half-Day Walking Tour
From $79 per person
4 hours
4.4 (7)
Unravel the complex mysteries and enigmatic secrets of Brussels on a 4-hour tour. Accompanied by your expert guide, learn about the secret societies and associations throughout the city and visit ancient churches shrouded in legend.
ToursRemembrance Tour: The Battle of the Bulge from Brussels
From $102 per person
13 hours
4.7 (3)
In Bastogne we take you to McAuliffe Square and see the bronze statue of General McAuliffe alongside a Sherman Battle Tank.
We call at the famous Mardasson Memorial honoring the memory of all allied soldiers wounded or killed during the Battle of the Bulge.
The Bastogne War Museum is the must-see. Apart from lunch facilities the museum offers a lot of comprehensible information. We also pay a respectful visit to one of the sober and subdued German cemeteries and we show you the fox holes dug by the 101 airborne division close to the village of Foy.
We drive across the Luxembourg border to Hamm where we visit the breathtaking American cemetery as well as the tomb of General Patton.
In order to wind up in beauty we have a leisurely stroll through the old city of Luxemburg. You see the cathedral, the Palace of the Grand Duke. In the lower part of the city we show you a trail of casemates, the abbey of Neumünster, the city walls and the picturesque sites along the river Alzette.
ToursAntwerp Half-Day Trip from Brussels
From $48 per person
5 hours 30 minutes
3.6 (182)
Antwerp has it all! It is not only the city of the famous painter Rubens. The river Scheldt is also the cradle of Antwerp and everywhere you will enjoy beautiful views of the waterway. Our guided walk through the old city starts at the impressive 13th century castle that guarded the city and its medieval river port. Antwerp has now become one of the largest harbor cities in the world. Our Lady’s Cathedral is the most impressive church in the Low Countries. It welcomes you with countless paintings by world class artists of the 17th century. The absolute masterpieces are the Rubens paintings. We will also take you to the gothic guild houses at the Market Square. Antwerp railway station is a must-see. It is said to be the most beautiful railway station in the world. Nearby are the diamond district and the Jewish quarter. In your free time, you should try the local beer called a ’Bolleke’.

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