5 x Charlotte Deprez' favourites in Brussels
Charlotte Deprez founder of The Tiny Nomad
I’m a freelance digital content creator & strategist living in Brussels and travelling as often as I can, always with a camera on hand. I was born and raised in Liège, but fell in love with Brussels when I visited for the first time as a teenager. I remember a very strong feeling that I belonged, and had to come live here someday. I took that leap of faith in 2013, and never regretted it! This city has everything: it’s big and small at the same time, it has hundreds of amazing food addresses, and when I walk the streets, I hear every language of the world. That’s probably what I love most here: everybody can feel at home in Brussels. Also, for the past few years I’ve been sharing my travel pictures and top Brussels tips on Instagram and my blog, the tiny nomad.
1) Le 203
After traveling the world, Mathilde and Richard decided to unpack their suitcases in Brussels, Saint-Gilles to be precise. Le 203 is a nice, warm restaurant where everything seems to just fall into place: the flavours coming from all four corners of the world, the beautiful decoration, but also the passion that drives the managing duo. The menu changes often, which makes every visit super refreshing. And when the weather allows it, the little garden is absolutely perfect!
2) Café Tulipant
Café Tulipant is more than a café, it’s a true second home for a lot of locals. Located on the recently renovated Place Fernand Cocq in Ixelles, this bar/restaurant is the kind of place that gives a soul to a neighbourhood. Open from 11 am to 1 or 2 am, it’s a hybrid place where you don’t know how long you’ll stay: a quick afterwork drink might turn into a dinner and then into an actual night out, if you want it to. Icing on the cake: Café Tulipant has been very tastefully decorated, with exposed-brick walls, vintage tiles on the floor, a beautiful concrete bar and warm wooden furniture. I just love going there!
3) Place Flagey & Ixelles Ponds
Flagey and its surroundings are, to me, a very good representation of Brussels’ soul. With dozens of restaurants around, a local weekend market, the best Belgian fries at Frit’Flagey and the iconic Café Belga, Flagey is most definitely one of the busiest areas in Brussels. In the summer, the neighbouring Ixelles Ponds are the perfect spot for some fresh air. And all year round, day and night, the Belga terrace is always lively and full of people. I just fell in love with that Brussels vibe.
4) Le Sans 13
Finding good pasta carbonara in Brussels can be tricky. Chefs around the city can interpret the recipe quite loosely and add cream, ham, mushrooms or even carrots. Yes, carrots. At Le Sans 13, there’s none of that nonsense. Here, pasta is the specialty and is prepared in the open kitchen, right before your eyes. All the ingredients are high quality — honorary mention for the scamorza ai pomodori — and you can taste that in the dishes, while the bill remains quite low. Oh, and the pasta carbonara is without a doubt the best in the city.
5) Mont des Arts
It doesn’t get better than the view from Mont des Arts. Located in the center of Brussels, it’s a place where tourists taking selfies meet busy locals enjoying their lunch break and the view. From up there, you see the MIM (Music Instruments Museum) and its glorious art nouveau façade on your right, the impressive Royal Library on your left, Place Royale behind you and, icing on the cake, the impressive Town Hall tower in the background. That perspective is, to me, Brussels in a nutshell.
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The 500 Hidden Secrets of Brussels reveals off-the-beaten-track places and interesting details for anyone who's keen to explore Brussel's best-kept secrets.
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