A rather small country in the middle of Western Europe, Belgium offers a fine mix of two major European mindsets, cultures and language groups: the southern Roman languages and culture, and the northern Germanic languages and culture.
This tiny country of eleven million people is jam-packed with historic landmarks; carpeted with forests and fields; crisscrossed by picturesque; and dotted with ancient towns, medieval castles and important battlefields.
Because I’ve already covered many destinations in Belgium, I would now like to talk about a handful of alternative things to do in Belgium.
5 Alternative Things to Do in Belgium
1 Ride a Bike through Haspengouw
The region of Haspengouw, also known as Hesbaye, lies in the east of the country. It consists of gently rolling hills and farmlands as far as the eye can see. Home to one of the largest fruit regions in Europe, this is a wonderful place to go for a bike ride in spring.
2 Shop for Diamonds in Antwerp
Antwerp is the world’s diamond capital—approximately 85% of all the rough diamonds in the world pass through the city of Antwerp, Belgium’s second largest city. In the so-called Diamond Quarter, there are about 1,500 diamond companies and more than 3,000 merchants, diamond cutters and traders.
3 Hike in High Campine National Park
Belgium’s only national park is situated in the province of Limburg. It is made up of large areas covered in purple heather, pine groves, sand dunes and lakes. Animals that can be spotted while hiking or cycling through the park are deer, smooth snakes, lizards, hawks and falcons.
4 Visit a Town in the Ardennes
The Ardennes is a forest that covers most of southern Belgium, a huge wooded area of hills, rivers and picturesque stone villages and towns. The Ardennes is a region that begs to be explored on foot or in a kayak. Towns that should be visited are Durbuy, Dinant and Spa.
5 Indulge in World-Class Food
From the famous frites to waffles and chocolate, Belgium is renowned for its food products. While visiting, it is essential to spend some time in a brasserie or tavern and try one of the local dishes, such as Flemish stew, paling in ‘t groen (literally ‘eel in the green’) and mashed potatoes with sausages. Sampling one or two beers is, obviously, mandatory as well!