Our first morning in Brussels was under a cold drizzle and we had one heck of a time finding a specific museum that was only supposed to be a few blocks from our hotel. The streets here made us remember (not fondly) how difficult it was to get around in Paris two years ago. However, after much map reading, we finally got our bearings and enjoyed a few hours at the Mexican celebration at BOZAR.
Our next stop was the highly anticipated Magritte Museum! We walked in only to be told they didn’t sell tickets on property, so we went on another search to find the main ticket office a block away. We stood in line for several minutes, got cut in on by two well-dressed middle-aged women (who pretended to not understand why I was upset that they blatantly cut in front of us) and then were told by the sales lady that the tickets were timed and we couldn’t enter until 4pm – it was 1pm – and the museum was only open until 5pm. But, she said, our tickets would be half price. We quickly decided that half-priced tickets were fine for an hour and then she rang us up at full price, 16 Euros.
The next bit of conversation went like this:
Me: Wait a second. Didn’t you just say tickets that late were half-price?
Crazy Ticket Lady: No.
Me: (looking at Eric who heard exactly the same thing I did)
CTL: I would not have said that.
Me: (giving her an incredulous look) So, you are going to charge us full price for just an hour.
Eric: We’re outta here.
At least there was a Belgian waffle truck nearby to cheer me up.
At this point, we had pretty much had it with this side of town, so we grabbed our stuff and headed over to St Kathrine’s Square and our bed for the next two nights, Maison Noble.
St Kathrine’s Square – much quieter here
Brussels Town Hall – does it bother anyone else that it’s not symmetrical? It drove Eric crazy.
On day two, we got a 24-hour subway pass and headed back west to see some of the parks, churches and landmarks outside of the old city.
Les Arcades du Cinquantenaire
Although we found Brussels difficult to navigate, Eric managed to memorize a route from our hotel to many of the main landmarks, so it made getting around on our side of town much easier. The beer helped, I’m sure.