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Travel Tuesdays: Belgium

Some of us at CVA are big fans of waffles and chocolate, so naturally we had to (just had to) cover Belgium as a Travel Tuesday destination. Now, of course there are things other than food that you can do and try while you are in Belgium and exploring the country, but keep in mind that they make some mean waffles, so keep that at the top of your list. Okay now onto the hotspots.

Located in Brussels, La Grand Place (also known as De Grote Markt) was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its outstanding representation of late 17th-century architecture. The building is rimmed by finely preserved guidhalls and other buildings that highlight Belgium’s architecture in its best light.

The square is commonly busy with tourists and locals all the time, but mainly every second year in August when the center is filled with 75-by-24-meter Flower Carpet, made up of more than 700,000 cut begonias.

If you’re a history buff, you might want to check out Flanders, where Belgium fought on the front lines during WWI. Not only is this location important historically, but the battlefields are a major pilgrimage site, and the trenches run for kilometers around the town of Ypres, where the area is scattered with cemeteries for the thousands of soldiers that died here.

The Tyne Cot Cemetery (British) and Langemark’s German War Cemetery are both solemn reminders of the gruesome attacks that took place during the war.

Again with the history classes… if anyone was paying attention and not texting, you may remember that Waterloo was where Napoleon was defeated in the famous battle (not just an ABBA song!). This is definitely a must-see spot for anyone remotely interested in history (or politics), as the artificial hill rises up from the surrounding flatlands with a memorial lion sculpture on top of the summit to commemorate the day when Napoleon’s army was defeated.

Bruges was built on the banks of the river Reie, and when it grew, so did a series of waterways connecting it to the Zwin estuary and the North Sea. Today the canals are beautiful reminders of Bruges history and tourists are able to cruise or walk along them, making this a popular attraction in Belgium.

Tourists are able to climb 366 winding and narrow steps of the belfry as a popular must-do thing while you’re in Belgium. Once you make it to the top, the views of the church spires and steeple-roofs provide one of the country’s most popular panoramas.

Belgian Cuisine

And now the best part of it all, the food. Belgium is best known for it’s chocolate, waffles, fries, and beer. Ingredients in most dishes will include potatoes, shrimp, local beer, meat, cheese, and butter.

Something to note about Belgian waffles is that unlike in America where we tend to eat them with syrup (maple syrup for all of our Canadians), Nutella and the likes, in Belgium they are typically served plain, but will have pearl sugar added into the batter which will melt once it hits the griddle.

Belgians love (love) their fries, but the most popular dipping sauce? Mayonnaise!

Stay tuned for next week’s Travel Tuesday feature! Also, be sure to follow us on social media and stay up to date with new travel recommendations, lifestyle content and business tips for all types of travelers.


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