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10 Things to Do in Brussels in March

Are you thinking of traveling to Brussels in March? Do not miss this guide to enjoy this month of celebrations and an incipient spring.

Ana Caballero

Ana Caballero

9 min read

10 Things to Do in Brussels in March

Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium | ©Stephanie LeBlanc

If you have made the decision to travel to Brussels in March, you have thought it through. In this month the temperatures are no longer so wintry and spring is beginning to appear in some parts of the city.

If you are wondering what to see and do in Brussels, I have compiled the different activities and celebrations that you can find only this month of the year. I present this guide so you can combine the spring nature of the city with its cultural and traditional side.

1. Don't miss the "World Waffle Day"

Enjoying different Waffles in Brussels| ©Jotawi
Enjoying different Waffles in Brussels| ©Jotawi

Every March 25, the waffle is the protagonist throughout Brussels because, worldwide, it is celebrated the day of the great typical Belgian dish and that is cause for celebration. And, why not, a good reason to eat more waffles than usual. The popular phrase says "Belgium smells like waffles" and you can see for yourself when you walk through the streets of the city.

But to know the origins of this Belgian tradition, we will go back to the Middle Ages, when the inhabitants of Brussels cooked them on heavy iron in those medieval kitchens. Year by year, the tradition was forged so that some waffle makers even had designs engraved with the initials of the owner of the house, so that every time waffles were cooked, they would have his personal mark. This has mutated over the years to become the typical grid shape of the also called "waffles".

In Belgium there are two main and very marked types of waffles: the Brussels waffle and the Liège waffle. You are probably wondering what are the differences between them. Well, beyond the shape and the number of holes in the design, the Liège waffle is made with a fluffier and sweeter batter, but you can easily identify it thanks to all the sugar nuggets scattered on its surface, something that gives it an unmistakable crunchy texture.

The Brussels waffle is lighter, less sweet, and is topped with sprinkled sugar and, why not, sometimes also with whipped cream.

Where to find the best waffles

If you visit the city in March, you have to join this celebration. Here is a list of the best places to have a great waffle day.

  • Debailleul is a chocolate and pastry shop located right on the Grand Place. You can find a very nice tea room inside and a terrace where you can enjoy views of the square. They offer 3 varieties of Brussels waffles, but I advise you to order the Dame Blanche with vanilla ice cream and hot chocolate. It is located at number 37 of the famous square.

  • Maison Dandoy became famous as a manufacturer of artisanal tea pastries, in fact the oldest in the city. But then it has been gaining popularity also for its waffles, which are not far behind in quality and taste. It has two tea rooms, near the Grand Place, and in the Galerie du Roi. So choose the one closest to you but do not hesitate to eat one of them. You can choose between Rue Charles Buls 14 or Galerie du Roi 2.

  • Café Wittamer was created by a family more than a century ago. It is characterized not only by its waffles, but you can also find cakes, pies and chocolates. Whether in the tea room on the second floor or on the terrace of the elegant Place du Sablon, you can enjoy the best sweets of Brussels in a perfectly atmospheric place. It is located at Place du Grand Sablon 13.

  • Finally, I present to you an ice cream parlor that also serves wonderful waffles. Gaston is known for being very close to the port of Brussels, as you can enjoy your sweets while enjoying its terrace in front of the pond. A perfect combination. Come and taste their products at Quai aux Briques 86.

2. Let your imagination run wild at the Brussels Animation Film Festival

Brussels Animation Film Festival| ©ines s.
Brussels Animation Film Festival| ©ines s.

The Brussels International Animation Film Festival presents exclusively animated films and is the only festival of its kind in Belgium. In fact, Anima is one of the most important festivals in Europe as different films are nominated at this festival for the Oscar awards for the best animated short film.

It has a very nice and international atmosphere, as the films come from all over the world. It is held annually and during the festival you can see carefully selected animated films of the best level. The audience is very varied, ranging from children who are attracted by the films to film professionals.

3. Enjoy the art at the Affordable Art Fair Brussels

Inside the Affordable Art Fair Brussels| ©Atena Abrahimia
Inside the Affordable Art Fair Brussels| ©Atena Abrahimia

If you are curious about contemporary art or if you are simply in town during the month of March, I present to you the Affordable Art Fair. This show takes place in different cities around the world and is always a complete success. Be part of this world famous exhibition where you will enjoy samples of paintings, sculptures and photographs in a pleasant and stimulating environment.

A special part of this two-day fair is the sector dedicated to emerging artists, where they can exhibit their creations and sell them at a great auction. National and international artists gain recognition thanks to this event, where they can finally be seen by a large number of people.

There are also interesting workshops if you feel like learning something new, don't miss it!

4. Take a trip to the magical Forest of Halle

Halle Forest| ©TopBruselas
Halle Forest| ©TopBruselas

With the arrival of March, the signs of the best time of the year are also beginning to show: spring. At the end of the month is a good time to visit the famous Blue Forest, just 30 minutes from the city of Brussels.

For several weeks, the Halle Forest attracts tourists and locals from all over Belgium to enjoy a small miracle. This unique spectacle consists of a huge blue blanket of 250 hectares, full of wild hyacinths that cover absolutely everything.

I recommend you to make this visit in the morning or in the evening, when the flowers have the strongest scent.

  • Where: Vlasmarkt Reef 4, 1500 Halle, 20 km from Brussels.

5. Transport yourself to Japan and admire the cherry trees at Watermael - Boitsfort

Cherry trees at Watermael - Boitsfort| ©Andrew Hardy
Cherry trees at Watermael - Boitsfort| ©Andrew Hardy

Enjoy the largest Japanese garden in Europe, and take a walk in the middle of nature.

In 1920, construction began on two villages on the outskirts of Brussels, just 9 kilometers away. In this design process, it was decided to incorporate along the streets, a large number of cherry trees, an emblematic sign of Japanese culture.

Since then, this quiet district of Brussels called Watermael Boitsfort, receives thousands of tourists who are attracted by the unique beauty of these trees in their flowering season.

  • Where: Avenue Georges Benoidt 22, 1170 Watermael-Boitsfort

6. Attend the Chocolate Festival in Mons

Tickets to the Chocolate Festival| ©Jose Vargas
Tickets to the Chocolate Festival| ©Jose Vargas

In Belgium, where chocolate is a central part of the culture, you can't miss a festival dedicated to this delicacy. At the end of the month, in the city of Mons, just an hour from Brussels, you can attend this festival that is already ten years old.

Not only will you be able to experience an interactive session by different chocolate makers from all over Belgium, but you can also stroll along the popular Chic & Chocolate Gourmet Walk, a 500-meter path full of sweets and chocolates of all kinds.

The surroundings of the main square of the city are filled with stalls, forming a large market where you can buy all kinds of products that are made with cocoa. And not only foodstuffs, since a wide variety of cosmetics, for example, are also manufactured.

If you do not feel like shopping, you will have tastings and you can witness gastronomic activities, such as cooking demonstrations or workshops by important international chefs.

Book a chocolate workshop in Brussels

7. Don't miss the Carnival of Binche

People at the Carnival of Binche| ©Marie-Claire
People at the Carnival of Binche| ©Marie-Claire

The Carnival of Binche is the most famous of all Belgium and is celebrated at the beginning of March. This celebration began in the fourteenth century, when Mary of Hungary organized for seven days, a series of banquets, parties and fireworks to commemorate the visit of his brother Charles V to the city. Since then, it has been organized every year.

This carnival is famous for the particular costumes and customs of all its attendees. The inhabitants of the city wear ostrich feather hats and engage in a battle of oranges. In addition, confetti is spread through the streets, and parades can be enjoyed along the roads.

The closing of this 3-day event is popular for the grand fireworks ceremony that lights up the entire sky.

8. Enjoy the Chocolate Week in Antwerp

Buying Chocolate in Brussels| ©Newsy Preservation Paris
Buying Chocolate in Brussels| ©Newsy Preservation Paris

Chocolate lovers have this week marked on their calendars. And, no wonder. Chocolate Week is usually organized in the second week of March and is a unique way to explore the city of Antwerp, just 40 minutes from Brussels.

During its duration, you can enjoy the best chocolate route while strolling through the main monuments of the city, making different stops in the best chocolate stores to taste their latest creations.

All you need is to purchase your pass and your map, and the desire to make a very sweet tour. The entrance fee is around 10€, and contains 10 vouchers that you can exchange in the participating stores for different sweet products of the best category. In this article you can see how to get from Brussels to Antwerp, are you ready?

Book an excursion to Antwerp from Brussels

9. Don't stop dancing at the Rampage Party

Rampage party in Brussels| ©Rampage
Rampage party in Brussels| ©Rampage

For two days in March, the biggest drum, bass and dubstep party in the world takes place in Brussels. The Rampage festival unites thousands of drum fans in a luxury party since 2009.

In its beginnings, Rampage was just a party that lasted around 12 hours, but due to the great success and attendance, it has changed its format and has become a full weekend festival.

Sure, you can buy the ticket for just one night, but I assure you that the whole experience is worth it as well. Remember to book your ticket in advance so you don't miss out on this great event.

10. Take a tour of the Van Buuren Museum and Gardens

Van Buuren Gardens| ©JJRA
Van Buuren Gardens| ©JJRA

This museum is actually a typical Art Deco style house. It is famous for having been built for wealthy businessman David Van Buuren, who took it upon himself to fill his house with the finest works of art, bizarre furniture, carpet and stained glass.

In addition, the Van Buuren Museum is renowned for the immense garden that covers almost two hectares, divided into three very different parts.

The first is the Picturesque Garden, which represents the geometric ideas of Art Deco. The second, the Labyrinth, whose main attraction are the seven sculptures of the Belgian sculptor André Willequet, from 1968. The third**, the Garden of Hearts**, is the part of the park that brings a touch of romanticism.

Although they are open all year round, March is a special time to spend your time outdoors and walk through dreamy gardens.

  • Where: 41 Avenue Léo Errera, 1180 Brussels.

Temperatures in March in Brussels

Spring in Brussels| ©airbus777
Spring in Brussels| ©airbus777

In Brussels, temperatures in March are around 10 °C during the day. It is a little warmer than February, and rainfall drops considerably. Spring starts to show and daylight can be enjoyed for longer.

The nights are still cold, but this makes it a perfect time to take advantage of the city and its daytime activities. Remember to bring enough warm clothes and a lot of desire to explore this amazing European city.