Why visit Belgium for Christmas? The end of the year holidays are the perfect opportunity for an extended trip. Each year, we go somewhere in Europe for about two weeks for a chance to immerse ourselves in a different destination and give ourselves the chance to pretend to be locals. Previous trips include: Lisbon and the Algarve; Aix en Provence and Nice; Tenerife and Vienna; and Granada and Malaga Spain, This year, we visited Belgium for Christmas and found that it was an ideal destination for the Christmas holidays. Read on for eight reasons to visit Belgium to celebrate Christmas and the New Year.
1. Christmas Cuberdon
Cuberdon are sold by the bag full on the streets during the Christmas season. Cuberdon are tasty little purple cones with a firm shell and oozy center. This sweet treat is perfect for the holidays and unique Belgian.
Are you hungry yet? Belgian waffles filled with fruit are another fond memory from our trip to Belgium at Christmas. We picked up a piping hot waffle stuffed with cherries in Liege.
SIDEWALK SAFARI SPOTLIGHT: Did you know that Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg are often grouped together and referred to as Benelux? Here are some ideas for other places to visit in Benelux:
3. Visit Belgium's Christmas Markets
Every city in Belgium has one or more Christmas markets. Christmas markets are fun to stroll, do a little shopping, and have an indulgent treat. Liege has one of the largest Christmas markets in Belgium.
4. Check out the Christmas Light Show on the Grote Markt in Brussels
The Grote Markt in Brussels is transformed into a fantastic extravaganza of light during the Christmas season. All the buildings on the main square glow and change in color from one minute to the next. The effect is truly magical.
5. Belgian Hot Chocolate Cubes
Belgium is synonymous with fine chocolate and in the winter time there is no better way to imbibe it than by melting a dense cube of dark chocolate in hot milk to make hot chocolate. A hot chocolate is the perfect winter warmer after exploring Belgium's Christmas markets. Bruges in particular has some amazing chocolate.
6. Atmospheric Pubs Full of Taxidermy
You may think this reason to visit Belgium at Christmas is a bit odd but keep an open mind for a moment. Belgium is full of pubs with character selling a huge variety of Belgian beer. We noticed that these pubs seem almost obsessed with taxidermy with stuffed grouse, boar, and peacock as likely to be seen as the bartender. I equate this interior decoration with a hearth and roaring fire. There is nothing better than to sip a beer tucked away inside from the cold.
7. A Dusting of Christmas Snow
Christmas just feels right if there is a light dusting of snow. On our winter holiday in Belgium, it snowed just to be scenic but not enough to be inconvenient.
SIDEWALK SAFARI SPOTLIGHT: Christmas in Europe is a great time to plan a trip. Let's explore some of my other favorite Christmas travel destinations beyond Belgium.
8. Treat Yourself to a Belgian Rail Ten Trip Rail Pass as a Christmas Present
Is Belgium worth visiting at Christmastime? Yes, Belgium is an ideal destination for Christmas because the country is compact with all four corners accessible from Brussels within about a two hour train ride. We discovered that Belgian Rail sells a ten trip rail pass which is ideal for an extended stay with Brussels as a home base. We used our 10 journey train pass to get to and from the airport to Bruges to celebrate Christmas day and then for traveling about to Ghent, Liege, Mechelen, Lier, and Leuven. If you have limited time and are torn about which cities to visit, check out this post comparing Ghent and Bruges on Vicki Viaja.