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Travel: How to spend 48 hours in Belgian capital Brussels

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Stay

The Belgian capital is packed with fascinating architecture, historical buildings, museums and arts venues.

The Dominican hotel offers an oasis of calm in a very stylish setting. Or, for something a little more intimate, The Fishmarket B&B offers six spacious rooms in a converted townhouse within walking distance of top attractions like The Grand Palace.

Eat

Moules frites (mussels and fries) is the unofficial national dish of Belgium. Some of the best are to be found at Chez Léon, in the heart of the city, and at Le Zinneke, which prides itself on serving mussels 69 different ways.

Plenty of eateries vie for the best frites in Belgium but Maison Antoine, in the EU quarter, has long queues for a reason.

And you’ll come across plenty of places selling sweet and savoury gaufers (Belgium waffles). Vitalgaufre, a small stand on 23-29 Rue Neuve, is rumoured to sell some of the best.

Drink

Beer in Brussels is a must. Moeder Lambic Fontainas, near the Grand Palace, has a wide selection of Lambic beers brewed in and around the city.

Cantilion, one of the city oldest breweries, has been making its signature three-year-aged beer the same way since it opened in 1900.

In contrast, the Brussels Beer Project has been reinventing Belgium beer since 2013 and creates a new variety every week.

See

The Grand Palace is a stunning 15th Century city hall that towers over the central square in the city’s Old Town.

Here’s you’ll find vendors, food stalls, flower markets and live music.

Chocoholics should sniff out Wittamer, a family-owned chocolatier, then pay a visit to the city’s delectable Chocolate Museum.

Another fascinating stop is the Comic Strip Museum, where you can learn all about world-famous characters with Belgium origins, including The Smurfs and Tintin.

Visit the famous sculpture Atomium, modelled on a magnified iron molecule, for spectacular views of the city, then take in the whole continent in minutes with a tour of the Mini-Europe miniature park below it.