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10 Best Museums in Brussels

Brussels will captivate you with all it has to offer, including its many thematic and historical museums that will invite you to a playful journey in the heart of Europe. I'll tell you more about some of the must-sees.

Carolina Morales

Carolina Morales

10 min read

10 Best Museums in Brussels

Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium | ©cea+

The Belgian capital, heart of Europe, can be easily toured in a weekend. You will have plenty of activities and places to see in Brussels. Chocolate, beer, galleries, restaurants and beautiful architecture. But museums also have their place and it is a highly recommended plan.

If you like curious details, architecture, music, natural history, read on because I recommend some of the best museums to explore during your stay in Brussels.

1. Magritte Museum

Exterior Magritte Museum| ©Richard Parmiter
Exterior Magritte Museum| ©Richard Parmiter

One of the youngest museums in the city of Brussels, with a collection of more than 200 works by the surrealist artist René Magritte. It is located in the heart of the Belgian capital and houses paintings, drawings, sculptures and other pieces such as advertising posters, photographs and films.

The museum offers different types of visits, including individual, family and group visits with a private guide. René Magritte was a renowned surrealist painter of Belgian origin, well known for his provocative images that invite us to change our perception of reality and see beyond. Highly recommended if you consider yourself a creative soul and appreciate art.

If you travel to Brussels for only 1 day, I recommend you to include it in your route.

Information of interest:

  • Price: admission for adults costs 10€ with an audio guide available for 4€. If you visit the museum with your family, children under 18 are free. Admission to the permanent collection is free every first Wednesday of the month.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Friday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, weekends from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm.
  • Address: Rue du Musée 9 / Museumstraat 9 - 1000 Brussels.

2. Museum of Musical Instruments

Museum of Musical Instruments| ©Schwars1
Museum of Musical Instruments| ©Schwars1

Do you like music? This place gathers more than a thousand musical instruments, distributed in 4 galleries. You will be able to know in detail information about each piece through text, images and sound panels.

The museum is located in a restoredBrussels complex that combines architecture with Art Nouveau and neoclassical styles and details.

The museum, also known as MIM for short, is part of the Royal Museums of Arts and History museum network. It also has a library and there are various types of tours and workshops for groups throughout the year. If you have a birthday during your visit to Brussels, the museum offers the opportunity to celebrate with a music-themed party that includes instrument playing sessions, stories and more.

Information of interest:

  • Price: admission for adults costs €15. If you visit the museum with your family, children under 18 are free.
  • Hours: open every day except Mondays from 9:30 am. Access allowed until 4:30 p.m.
  • Address: Rue Montagne de la Cour 2 - 1000 Brussels.

3. National Museum of Resistance

Inside the National Museum of Resistance| ©Chabe01
Inside the National Museum of Resistance| ©Chabe01

The Resistance Museum is definitely a visit that I highly recommend you to make an exercise of memory and visit a space that keeps much of the historical heritage of Europe. During your visit you will find documents and archives about the Resistance movement and its actions during the two world wars.

The museum opened its doors in June 1972 and is open to the public free of charge. Check with your accommodation or local guide for availability, as it may not be available to the general public at certain times of the year.

Information of interest:

  • Price: free admission.
  • Hours: Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or by appointment.
  • Address: 14 rue Van Lint, 14 Van Lintstraat 1070 Brussels.

4. Fashion and Lace Museum

Touring the Fashion and Lace Museum| ©Steve De Jongh
Touring the Fashion and Lace Museum| ©Steve De Jongh

The Museum of Fashion and Lace, is a must for fashion lovers and eager to know rare and significant pieces in the history of fashion.

The museum holds annual thematic exhibitions dedicated, for example, to wedding dresses, sixties and even the crinolines of the nineteenth century. In addition to being a window for new promising local designers who have the opportunity to present a personal exhibition designed especially for the museum. This space also offers lecture series open to the general public to promote knowledge of fashion.

The museum is located very close to the street of La Violette, where you can also find numerous restaurants and bars to eat and drink.

Information of interest:

  • Price: the entrance fee for adults is 8€. Children under 18 are free.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.
  • Address: Rue de la Violette 12, 1000 Brussels.

5. Museum of Art and History

Brussels Museum of Art and History| ©M0tty
Brussels Museum of Art and History| ©M0tty

Take a historical journey through human activity from prehistoric times to the present day. Antiquity, non-European civilizations, decorative arts of Europe and much more, will be what you can find in this museum that is part of the Royal Museums of Arts and History network.

On your tour you can appreciate archaeological pieces from Belgium, from prehistoric times to the Merovingian era, as well as relics from Egypt, the Middle East and Iran. I highly recommend the collection of European decorative art ranging from Romanesque art to art deco.

Information of interest:

  • Price: the entrance fee for adults is 10€ . Children under 18 are free.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Friday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm, Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Closed on January 1, May 1, November 1 and 11, and December 25. Tickets on sale until 4:00 pm.
  • Address: Parc du Cinquantenaire 10 - 1000 Brussels.

Book a guided tour of Brussels

6. Museum of Medicine

Exterior of the Museum of Medicine in Brussels| ©OleA1
Exterior of the Museum of Medicine in Brussels| ©OleA1

The Museum of Medicine opened its doors in 1995 and gathers an interesting historical heritage around medicine, through artistic and archaeological objects. The museum has eight exhibition rooms, where you can learn about medical practices of the past, and how medicine went from being something magical and religious to something rational and scientific.

Undoubtedly a space that connects science with art. In this place you can also find anatomical waxes from other great medical museums of the last century that illustrate more about different diseases that have attacked humanity throughout history.

A recommended option if you are traveling with your family and young children, who will surely be attracted and curious about the theme of the place.

Information of interest:

  • Price: the entrance has a cost of 8€ and has a guided tour for a minimum of 10 people.
  • Hours: Monday to Friday from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
  • Address: Route de Lennik, 808, 1070 Brussels.

7. ARGOS

Touring the ARGOS| ©Brussels Museums
Touring the ARGOS| ©Brussels Museums

A place that I love and that you will enjoy if you like visual arts and cinema. ARGOS is a contemporary art center specialized in audiovisual arts and located a few minutes from Sainte-Catherine in the heart of Brussels.

The collection here includes nearly 5,000 film and video works by a variety of artists, from the 1960s to the present day. If you visit Brussels in summer, I think it is an ideal place to take shelter from the heat, plus you can enjoy its projections and temporary exhibitions open to the public throughout the year.

In addition to the film collection, you will also find books, festival catalogs and contemporary art magazines, all in its super media library. On the first Wednesdays of the month, ARGOS organizes evening exhibitions from 9 pm, with a cost of 2 euros and a drink included.

Information of interest:

  • Price: there are three categories of entry and the contribution is voluntary between €4, €7 and €10. Children under 18 years old enter for free.
  • Hours: Thursday to Sunday from 12:00 to 19:00 hours. Closed on Mondays and Wednesdays.
  • Address: Rue du chantier B-1000 Brussels.

8. Archives of the City of Brussels

Place where the archives of the City of Brussels are located.| ©Bic11
Place where the archives of the City of Brussels are located.| ©Bic11

Maybe you are one of those who keep old newspapers and like to look through historical archives. If so, this place is for you, as you can find archives of former Brussels governments and services.

The Archives of the City of Brussels (ASB) are located since 1979 in what was once a textile industry of Jules Waucquez and Company, where you can appreciate the commercial architecture of the twentieth century. An unmissable place to learn about historical documents on the social, political, cultural and artistic history of Brussels.

Information of interest:

  • Price: admission is free.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Closed Mondays, weekends and public holidays.
  • Address: Rue de Ruysbroeck 2 - 1000 Brussels.

9. Autoworld Brussels

Inside the Autoworld| ©Carlos M
Inside the Autoworld| ©Carlos M

Another of my favorites to include on your family trip to Brussels. Here, a dazzling historic building in Brussels houses a space dedicated to the history of the automobile in what is the Grand Belgian Automobile Museum.

The Museum is located in Parc de Cinquantenaire, in a neoclassical building that commemorated the 50th anniversary of the Kingdom of Belgium in 1880. Since 1986 it has housed Ghislain Mahy's largest collection of classic cars.

The museum offers organized visits for groups, so I recommend the plan if you are traveling with family or friends. The collection of cars that you can appreciate is divided between different categories such as sports and competition, royal family cars, microcars and bubble cars.

In Autoworld you can find temporary exhibitions throughout the year.

Information of interest:

  • Price: adults 13€, groups of more than 15 people 11€, children from 6 to 11 years old 6€ and children under 5 years old enter for free.
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, weekends from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.
  • Address: Parc du Cinquantenaire, Brussels

10. The Belgian Chocolate Village

Belgian Chocolate| ©Jennifer JK
Belgian Chocolate| ©Jennifer JK

If you are in Brussels you can't refuse a Belgian chocolate. In the city you can find chocolate tours and tastings available, but I also recommend a visit to the Belgian Chocolate Village.

There are more than 900 square meters dedicated to chocolate. A tour through its history and tradition, and themed workshops that bring you closer to the chocolate culture. In this ideal place to visit if you have gone to Brussels with small children or in winter, you will have access to audio guides in 7 languages to make the tour that takes you through the history, benefits, economy and diversity of chocolate.

An interactive and very appetizing experience that you are sure to enjoy.

Information of interest:

  • Price: the entrance fee for adults is 8€. Between 6 and 18 years old 5 €.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Friday from 09:00-18:00 hours, weekends from 10:00 to 18:00 hours. Closed on Mondays.
  • Address: Rue De Neck 20, 1081 Brussels

Hire a chocolate workshop in Brussels

11. Belgian Comic Strip Center

Inside the Comic Strip Museum| ©Yann Gar
Inside the Comic Strip Museum| ©Yann Gar

The comic in Belgium is a whole culture and that's why I include this place in the list. A complete temple dedicated to this craft, located in the heart of Brussels. A tribute to the most prominent figures of what is known as the ninth art, and open to the public for over 25 years.

The program includes permanent and temporary exhibitions throughout the year, where Tintin and the Smurfs are protagonists, of course. The museum is located in the Art Nouveau building designed by Victor Horta.

Among the activities offered by the center are workshops for children during the vacation season and on weekends, and you can also celebrate your birthday with a themed party.

Information of interest:

  • Price: the entrance fee for adults is 12€, tickets 12 and 25 years old 9€, from 6 to 11 years old 5€.
  • Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Access allowed until 5:00 pm.
  • Address: Rue des Sables 20, 1000 Brussels

12. Braille Museum

Inside the Braille Museum| ©Brussels Museums
Inside the Braille Museum| ©Brussels Museums

The Braille Museum offers you the opportunity to learn and explore the history of the Braille writing system, as well as discover details about Louis Braille, French pedagogue and its inventor.

An important and necessary stop, especially if you are traveling with children and teenagers, who can have an approach to the importance of this system in history and its contribution to the diversity and inclusion of people with special abilities. The museum devotes much of its space to the current technology of the Braille system and its application in the daily lives of people with visual disabilities.

Here you will also have access to topographical books, old Braille typewriters and portable printers. One room includes an exhibit on the history of Belgium, which visitors can explore through their senses.

Information of interest:

  • Price: free admission
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 08:00-17:00.
  • Address: Rue d'Angleterre 57, 1060, Brussels

Brussels Card

Brussels Card| ©Brussels Museums
Brussels Card| ©Brussels Museums

If you liked this list of recommended museums in Brussels, you should know that with the Brussels Card, you can access some of them for free or at reduced prices. When planning your trip to Brussels and exploring the different tours and activities, do not forget to check how you can purchase it to enjoy its benefits during your visit to the city.

With the card you can access about 49 local museums for free, as well as have discounts in bars, stores and restaurants. You can also have privileged access to the Atomium, as well as the Hop on Hop off tourist buses.