Making Brussels Interesting – with TravelMagic and Brussels Airlines
A Day Making Brussels Interesting
- Travel? TravelMagic!
- Saturday Morning fun and games
- SN2050 Birmingham Airport to Brussels National Airport
- TravelMagic overview
- The Pantone Hotel
- A Day in Brussels (THIS SECTION)
- Back to Brussels Airport, Brussels Airlines Lounge
- SN2047 Brussels National Airport to Birmingham Airport
A day doing Brussels things.
With the new day, I skipped the brunch and rested in. After finishing up at the hotel, I headed off to the Atomium via the Metro. I could had bothered to dump my luggage at the hotel, but I didn’t – mainly as I didn’t fancy wandering all the way back to the hotel to pick my bag up later.
So I headed to the Metro, weaving my way past all the bikes as it was car free day in Brussels – and the bikes were out in force which made it fun to walk around.
Even handbikes were out in force.
Now, you’d expect a lot of pictures of the Atomium wouldn’t you? It’s a landmark, symbol of Expo 58 and all that.
However, a quick read indicated the Atomium building is protected by copyright too according to http://blog.atomium.be/#/AuthorsRights.aspx as Glass,Steel and Stone http://www.glasssteelandstone.com/BuildingDetail/42.php found out. I also had a run-in with the owners on Twitter, and rather than give the satisfaction of giving them the chance to hunt an image down, I present this.
See: http://www.chillingeffects.org/fairuse/notice.cgi?NoticeID=760 and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomium
As I’m not a fan of angry Belgium people, I took my pictures for my own personal archive, (which I’ve only retained on the server – they’re gone from my laptop and phone… a shame.. but… well), and headed back down to the city centre.
Rather than taking the Metro straight back to the city centre – I decided to take an adventure, and take the tram back to Midi. Whilst it did take longer than the Metro, it provided a much more satisfying way of travelling.
Not to be confused with the band.
And provided far better pictures than the Atomium as I think we can agree.
Empty Streets… just lots of bikes…
Cycles from Brussels Villo! hire scheme at a parking station
Fruits and Veg on sale…
The tram made its way into the dark, and soon it was nearing Midi.
The tram – whilst one of the older ones was reasonably quick, and a much better ride into town – and well patronised due to the tram and metro being free that day too.
The tram on its way.
I hoped onto a train at Midi to Central (mainly as I was lazy and didn’t know the way on the tram/metro). A few minutes later, I was at Centrall.
As I was near the Grande Place, I headed over to the chaos that was the Grandemarket – as there was a festival of Belgium arts and food was going on.
Although I’m still working out how “Puppet on a String” by Sandy Shaw and “It’s a long way to Tipperary” is remotely Belgium. Still. They were dancing along happily to it.
Of course, I wanted to see if the most disappointing sights in the world were doing a roaring trade. They were. What am I referring to? The Manneken Pis and Jeanneke Pis.
Manneken Pis with the crowds… WHY???
Why these are popular is still beyond me.
Meanwhile, I caught up with the world and watch the bikes everywhere.
The bikes were everywhere. And I mean everywhere. It showed that a city could block cars out for day (or if cars could drive, max of 30km per hour… which for some would be a shock!)
I saw at one point the clock passed 4:30pm. It was time to make tracks back to Brussels Central Station – where there a convenient entrance near the Grande Place
Next: Back to Brussels National Airport and Brussels Airlines Lounge.
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I too am wondering why Manneke Pis is so popular.
As for the matter of the pictures of the Atomium, us Belgians think it’s completely ridiculous and more often than not just ignore the fact that there’s copyright on it (not to mention that SABAM, which is like the Belgian copyright lobby is made fun of a lot).
If if makes you feel better Xander – have a look at the tweets between Atomium and me… 😉