If you haven’t already, take a minute to look up Brussels, Belgium online. The city’s beautiful, right? Well, that comes with the territory if we’re talking about capital cities. But there’s something else about Brussels that probably caught your attention.
Something that you can’t really find anywhere else: Brussels is a very green city.
Parks, gardens, public spaces – Brussels has all of these in spades. That’s one of the reasons why this city is so well-loved by backpackers, travelers, and urban explorers. If you look at the city limit, you’ll find several hills and farmlands nearby. Case in point, Brussels is a very outdoorsy city.
To honor that, we’re going to show you our favorite outdoor and camping activities near Brussels. We’ve got a lot of traveling ahead of us. Better strap on your good shoes and use a luggage storage service to store your things while you explore.
Plus of course, do not forget to pack the essential items for your grand camping trip!
Like many of the words and phrases that we use today, “labyrinth” has roots in Ancient Greek Mythology. The tale of Theseus and the Minotaur, to be specific. Legend holds that the famous Greek Hero battled the Minotaur in a cavernous maze. Brussels’ Labyrinth doesn’t have any Minotaurs or battles to the death.
However, it does have gorgeous gardens, inspiring flower art, and the Van Buuren Museum. It also has a menagerie of hedge mazes for guests of all ages. Maybe there is something mystical about this place – some ancient secret that’s waiting to be uncovered. Stop on by and see for yourself.
Dinner In The Sky
Fine dining is probably the last thing one might consider an outdoor activity. Typically, they’d be right, but there’s absolutely nothing typical about Dinner in the Sky.
Here’s how it works; you book a reservation waaaaay ahead of time, strap your safety harness, then dine with up to three other guests as a giant crane airlifts you through the sky.
In all our years, we’ve never really come across anything like this. If you want to get a bird’s eye view of Brussels and a delicious meal at the same time, you can’t go wrong with DITS.
The Park of Brussels
Earlier, we said that Brussels is a very green city. Well, it’s thanks to places like The Park of Brussels that our claim rings true. 32 acres of flowers and trees make up the bulk of this park. That means there’s plenty of room for a game of catch or even a quick nap.
Backpackers love this place because of how wide and expansive it feels. Flower enthusiasts can’t get enough of the gorgeous plants that are in bloom. Even sculpture lovers will find plenty of statues to admire at this venue. Everyone loves Brussels Park, but we expect nothing less from the city’s first public park.
Parc du Cinquantenaire
Parc du Cinquantenaire is one part green space and one part military museum. This park is 30 hectares wide, making it one of the largest public spaces in Brussels. Every building has a story, and that’s exactly the case with each structure that can be found at this venue.
Records show that King Leopold II had most of the Cinquantenaire built in preparation for the National Exhibition of 1880.
That’s right, the Cinquantenaire has been around for more than 2 centuries at this point. Many people visit this park for its historic and cultural significance. Others frequent the area because it’s just a great place to relax. Outdoorsy types will probably appreciate a little bit of column A and a little bit of column B.
Brussels has many iconic landmarks, but there’s only one that lights up the night sky. It’s the Atomium – a towering silver structure that also doubles as a restaurant. Newcomers to Brussels might wonder where they can find such an amazing building. The answer to that question is simple: at the Heysel Plateau.
This venue isn’t just the home of the Atomium, it was also the home of the 1935 International Exposition and 1958 World Fair. A green space like Heysel is perfect for all sorts of outdoor activities. Sightseeing is probably our favorite, thanks to all the beautiful buildings nearby.
Among the sea of famous quotes coined by Robert Frost lies a gem about “taking the road less traveled”.
Sonian Forest is the ideal place for anyone who’s really looking to go off the beaten path. This sprawling wilderness area is more than 4,421-hectares wide. More than enough room to partake in any outdoor activity that you can think of.
Far and away, Sonian Forest is the favorite camping spot for folks who like to rough it out under the stars. People aren’t fond of being lectured, but we’ll say this much; plan, plan, plan before you visit this forest.
Bois de la Cambre
If you made it to the Sonian Forest and thought “yeah, I’m not going in there” then don’t fret. You can still have a great time if you head to Bois de la Cambre. This friendly park lies right at the edge of Sonian Forest – right at a palace where the city and the wilderness intersect.
It’s also worth mentioning that this place is massive. Campers will find plenty of room to pitch tents and hunker down if they’re so inclined. We’d recommend stopping by even if you aren’t bugged by Sonian Forest. Bois de la Cambre’s lake is worth the trip.
Mont des Arts
Anyone even remotely familiar with Brussels knew this entry was coming. Mont des Arts is probably the single most recognizable landmark in the city. If the slew of famous buildings that decorate this area doesn’t ring a bell, its internationally renowned flower garden might.
You won’t be able to do as many outdoor activities as you can at other places, but the view is worth a visit alone.