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Key Info

Square de l'Atomium 1

Details

Museums, Sightseeing Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 3.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

The most popular tourist attraction in Brussels, the Atomium is a depiction of an iron crystal magnified more than 100 billion times that was originally built for the 1958 World’s Fair in Brussels. Today, it houses multiple exhibitions, a panoramic view over the city and a restaurant with excellent views, and is considered to be a symbol of both Brussels and Belgium.

If there's one reason to head to the Atomium, it's the spectacular views of the city, according to many recent visitors. Travelers advised that it is far from other attractions, however, and that there can be long lines.

Since it’s located about 5 miles north of the historic center and Grand-Place, consider using a hop-on, hop-off bus to travel there or travel via the metro, getting off at the Heizel/Heysel station. You may not want to drive, as the attraction has no parking lots. The Atomium is open every day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., though the busiest times are between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tickets cost 15 euros (about $16.50) for adults and 8.50 euros (about $9) for children. For more information, check out the Atomium's website.

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#1 Grand-Place

Whether you're just passing through Brussels or here for a week, you can't miss the Grand-Place. This square, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, sits in the heart of Brussels and is renowned for its many Gothic and Baroque-style buildings. The Grand-Place is close to many of the city's main attractions, including the St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral and the beloved Manneken Pis. At Christmas, enjoy the Winter Wonders light show at night along with a massive Christmas tree, and every August, admire an enormous carpet made of flowers inside the Grand-Place.

Travelers love the Grand-Place for its stunning architecture. Recent reviewers suggested visiting during the day and night; during the day to see the details of the architecture, and at night to witness the vibrant life that takes over the square. However, a common complaint among tourists was the constant crowds (and higher prices), but that's to be expected at such a big attraction. 

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