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From the stately Mons des Arts garden to the hidden nooks and crannies of Brussels, these seven walking tours all offer completely different perspectives on the metropolis | © Global Enterprises
From the stately Mons des Arts garden to the hidden nooks and crannies of Brussels, these seven walking tours all offer completely different perspectives on the metropolis | © Global Enterprises
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The Best Guided Walking Tours To Take In Brussels

Picture of Nana Van De Poel
Updated: 9 February 2017
It can be hard to pick a lane when it comes to walking tours in Brussels. With hundreds of them dedicated to the Art Nouveau gems, comic book murals, chocolate havens, and expert beer cafés scattered throughout the city, picking one can prove quite the challenge. Luckily, these seven tours are all the best in their little niche, so all you have to do is pick an interest, and start learning.
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Chocolate Walking Tour and Workshop by Global Enterprises

A must for foodies who are well aware that Belgium has a stellar reputation for turning cocoa beans into chocolatey goodness and want to try their hand at the craft themselves. This most indulgent of walks starts in front of the very first Godiva store that was built upon the famous Belgian chocolate brand’s birth in 1926. Next, it’s onwards to many a chocolate legend, not in the least Neuhaus, inventor of the soft-centered praline. For three hours, you’ll make your way from one chocolate temple to the next, passing Brussels landmarks and sampling authentic and exotic creations as you go. In the end, there’s time to use the ingredients you loved while sampling – from caramel and nuts to passion fruit and caramel – to make your own pralines. For those who consider themselves avid snackers but terrible cooks, this tour by Brussels Chocolate Tours is a great alternative that drops the workshop.

Duration: 4 hours

Price: €70 for adults, €40 for kids (6-12)

Starting point: Grand-Place 21, Brussels, Belgium

Some of the goodies lying in wait on the Chocolate Walk and Workshop | © Global Enterprises

Some of the goodies lying in wait on the Chocolate Walk and Workshop | © Global Enterprises

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(Semi-)Free Walking Tour by Viva Brussels

Backpackers and penniless students will be delighted to hear of this tour, organized three times a day – rain or shine. Besides your typical tour hallmarks such as Manneken Pis, La Bourse, and the Royal Palace, a young team of guides will share with you the capital’s urban legends and lesser-known mysteries. They’ll also give you the local scoop on where to get the best fries, cheapest waffles, free museums, and beers at democratic prices. In the end, you simply pay what you thought the tour was worth or what’s within the limits of your pocket book.

Price: whichever amount you’re willing to give

Starting point: Grand-Place, Brussels, Belgium, look for the orange umbrella

No reservations required at the Viva walking tour. All you need to do is show up for the classic Brussels sights and penny-pinching tips | © Viva Brussels Tours

A smart choice on the first day to see the classic Brussels sights and score helpful penny-pinching tips for the rest of your stay | © Viva Brussels Tours

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Comic Book Tour by Bravo Discovery

Belgian-born comic strip heroes such as Tintin, Marsupilami, and Spirou are everywhere in Brussels, just as long as you know where to look. Going in search of the paper icons painted on walls throughout the city center and Laeken during a tour is one of the best ways to discover the hidden nooks and crannies of the capital. Some of the frescoes smartly play into the architectural qualities of the location they’ve been assigned, such as the Ric Hochet wall where the adventurous reporter is dangling from a rooftop to swing into a girl’s bedroom. The project was launched by the City of Brussels in 1993 and has come to count over 50 murals, with more being added every year.

Duration: 2 hours

Price: €10, €9 for students and free for children

Starting point: in front of City Hall on the Grand-Place, Brussels, Belgium

Hergé's Quick and Flupke spying on Agent 15 | © Olivier van de Kerchove/visitbrussels.be

Hergé’s Quick and Flupke spying on Agent 15 | © Olivier van de Kerchove/Courtesy of visitbrussels.be

Jogging Tour by Brussels Sightjogging

A private tour great for athletes or sporty couples who tend to miss exercise on their city trips. The energetic guides – all locals with a passion for running and the city they call home – promise to stick to your pace and the distance you’ve determined while they show you the city’s highlights. Though this is certainly a special way of discovering Brussels, it’s one of the most malleable experiences and can be one of the most scenic as well. Their tour, starting underneath the towering Atomium and following a series of stretched-out parks, will have you surprised at the amount of greenery the capital holds.

Duration: 1 hour or 1.5 hour

Price: €39, students under 25 years old get a 30% discount.

Starting point: Pick-up if your hotel is downtown. If not, the guide will meet you at the Brussels Information Point.

Experienced marathon runners with a love for Brussels offer another way of exploring the capital | © Brussels SightJogging
Experienced marathon runners with a love for Brussels offer another way of exploring the capital | © Brussels SightJogging
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Beer Tasting Experience by Sandemans Brussels Tours

Belgian beer culture runs deep as a central part to the small country’s identity. In three of the capital’s specialized beer bars, you’ll get to enjoy one of the hailed Trappist beers, brewed in monasteries under the strict supervision of the monks, and the Lambic, a Brussels specialty made exclusively in the Pajottenland area. It’s the perfect occasion to ask questions since guides are overflowing with beer knowledge and love to offer personalized beer advice tailor-made to your taste buds. Don’t forget your ID for this adults-only tour.

Duration: 3 hours

Price: €19

Starting point: Scott’s Bar, 2 Rue Montagne aux Herbes Potagères, Brussels, Belgium

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(Semi-)Free Art Nouveau Tour by Bravo Discovery

Brussels played a pioneering role in the development of the early Art Nouveau architectural style with its rounded lines, seas of glass, and fanciful cast iron flourishes, and it largely has visionary Victor Horta to thank for this. On the tour, you’ll get a chance to see Horta’s famed Brussels mansions along with the private home of another Art Nouveau early bird, Paul Hankar. First up is the impressive MIM (Musical Instruments Museum) by Paul Saintenoy, and closing the tour is the atelier and house of Horta himself, now a museum.

Duration: Every Saturday for 2.5 hours

Price: whichever amount you’re willing to give

Starting point: in front of City Hall on the Grand-Place, Brussels, Belgium

On the tour you'll come across the inventive MIM | © E.Danhier/visitbrussels.be

First up on the itinerary is the MIM with its iron cast turret and embellishments | © E.Danhier/Courtesy of visitbrussels.be

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Brussels Mysteries and Legends Tour by Global Enterprises

The shadowy Freemason and Templer societies are hardly confined to the borders of Italy’s Vatican or Dan Brown’s imagination. When taking this tour, it is surprising to learn that the tentacles of these mythical organizations stretch all the way to Brussels. Secret symbols are hiding in plain sight all over the city center, in churches and temples, unnoticed by both visitors and locals until pointed out by a passionate guide. The tour includes an entrance fee to the underground Coudenberg ruins, former abode of Charles V, and at the end, a hot waffle and chocolate will help you recover from all the surprises.

Duration: 4 hours

Price: €65 for adults, €35 for kids (6-12)

Starting point: Grand-Place 21, Brussels, Belgium

Vatican City isn't the only one with Templar secrets | © Monika Najder Photography/courtesy of Global Enterprises

Vatican City isn’t the only hub to boast signs of secret societies | © Monika Najder Photography/Courtesy of Global Enterprises