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Greentraveller's Guide to Brussels, Belgium

Posted by Rhiannon Batten at 12:02 on Friday 25 September 2015

As part of our series of Greentraveller's Guides to European cities reachable by train, we have produced a guide to Brussels.

Since the mid-1990s the greater Brussels region has been developing cycle networks, investing in its parks and forests and encouraging the formation of “green continuities” such as the Promenade Verte, a 63km-long pathway for hikers and cyclists that circles the city. It is also in the process of drawing up a regional development plan that should see the creation of sustainable neighbourhoods across the city and an environmentally sensitive redevelopment of the Heysel Plateau, the first time the site has been updated since the 1958 World’s Fair, for which its famous Atomium monument was built.

Greentraveller's Guide to Brussels shows visitors how to make the most of the city's local scene, featuring local food and drink, places to stay, local attractions, activities, and how to travel to and around the city by public transport, including in-depth information on how to travel from London to Brussels by train.

Rhiannon Batten wrote and researched the guideRhiannon Batten wrote and researched the guideWritten by professional travel writer Rhiannon Batten, the guide highlights some of city's greenest places to stay, all chosen for their commitment to reducing their draw on energy, encouraging guests to use more sustainable forms of low carbon transport, and sourcing local, seasonal food. 

Rhiannon writes: "Standing awestruck in the Grand Place, strolling among graceful Art Nouveau buildings, imagining Tintin chasing round the Comic Strip Centre or politicians debating in the European Parliament. Since the mid-1990s the greater Brussels region has been developing cycle networks, investing in its parks and forests and encouraging the formation of “green continuities” such as the Promenade Verte, a 63km-long pathway for hikers and cyclists that circles the city.

"A demand from Brussels’s citizens for more eco-minded facilities has seen a blossoming of sophisticated organic restaurants, ethical shops and other low-carbon businesses over recent years, making its greener side more obvious."

Lots of green space: Porte de Hal, Hallepoort. Photo: OPT-JP RemyLots of green space: Porte de Hal, Hallepoort. Photo: OPT-JP RemyThe guide highlights some of the city's greenest places to stay in Brussels: youngsters will love the hip Aloft Brussels with a lively bar and gym, or there's the comfortable hotel with photography exhibitions and cycling tours. Stay a week at a stylish Art Deco apartment in the centre.

Stylish Art Deco apartments. Photo: Housestories ApartmentsStylish Art Deco apartments. Photo: Housestories ApartmentsThe guide features plenty of wonderful places to eat in Brussels, from organic burgers at one of the city's many sustainable fast food outlets, to fabulous regional cooking from cafés and restaurants across the centre where you can dine on the likes of glazed venison shank, washed down with a good glug of organic wine or locally-brewed beer.

Communal dining at Brasserie Cantillon, Photo: Brasserie CantillonCommunal dining at Brasserie Cantillon, Photo: Brasserie CantillonWe've also included a smattering of local attractions in Brussels, from markets to museums to some great spots for shopping. If you really want to get under the skin of the city, why not see the city through the eyes of a local and join the Greeter scheme. If you want to get out and about and explore the city, Rhiannon has lined up plenty of activities in Brussels for you: take a leisurely afternoon boating on the outskirks of the capital, jump on a bike for a whizz round the city, or go diving in the world's deepest manmade pool.

Boating lake on the outskirts of the city. Photo: Chalet RobinsonBoating lake on the outskirts of the city. Photo: Chalet RobinsonRichard Hammond, Chief Executive of the Greentraveller Media Group, says: “We hope this Greentraveller’s Guide to Brussels will help visitors make the most of their time in this wonderful city in a way that utilises the city's many convenient car-free options whilst bringing local economic benefits.

"This guide is the latest of our online visitor guides for cities easily reachable by rail from the UK that are proving popular with holidaymakers looking for that special local touch."

>> Greentraveller's Guide to Brussels

>> See all of our Greentraveller's Guides

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