Street Art Brussels

For a few years now, the area around Brussels’ old fish market, by the Sainte Catherine church has become the open-air studio of French street artist OakOak. Playing cheekily with features of Brussels’ urban environment, OakOak transforms drain covers, doorsteps and street signage into humorous works of art. Ranging from manhole covers being swallowed by giant frogs to love stories between zebra crossing stripes, the artworks were commissioned by Brussels’ culture minister to make people look at the city in a new way.


Flagey Sunday Market

On Sundays, the whole of Brussels’ trendy Ixelles quarter comes out in force to the promenade and peruse the stalls at Place Flagey.

Grab a sunny seat outside one of the square’s cafes to watch children splashing in fountains and people gorging on slices of fresh mango or wandering in and out of bars with paper cones of freshly fried chips from the famous Frit Flagey hut.

For something more sophisticated, join the locals enjoying €2 glasses of bubbly and €1 oysters on their shells while perching on stools by the van they’re sold from. > Place Flagey, Sunday, 7am-1pm

La Brocante – flea market

The sprawling Jeu de Balle flea market is a Brussels must-see and the ancient cobbled square is surrounded by many bars packed out with street traders and bargain hunters.

Most are drinking Jupiler, the quaffable local pils, or classic Trappist ales such as Orval and Chimay, served in their own distinctive glass. But La Brocante is a café-bar that stands out for its remarkable craft-beer selection.

The bar rocks at the weekend, with lunchtime jazz and blues concerts, generous platefuls of traditional Brussels grub: don’t miss the “stoemp”, a Belgian take on sausages and mash. And if you are looking for surprises outside the 120 different beers, ask for the passionate young owner, Sébastien de Neef, about his limited-edition seasonal craft beers that he reserves for serious enthusiasts.

La Brocante, 170 Rue Blaes, +32 2 512 1343, no website

La pharmacie anglaise

Welcome to a surrealist ambiance and retro deco addicts, this bar will drop you into another century, among flasks, vials, bowls cocktails based on Hendrick’s gin.
Here the drinks are more elixirs to be drunk with closed eyes. Cabinet of curiosities, you should stop by, at least once.La pharmacie anglaise, Coudenberg 66, 1000 Bruxelles.

Arthur Orlans

If you like a cozy atmosphere and stylish decor, you’ll love this speakeasy-looking bar.

Here, all the cocktails are made to measure. Logically, we are in a former fashion house… Francesco Ravo was responsible for the opening of this showcase on Rue Dansaert.

A tribute to his father, Mario, a tailor for men who passed on to him his keen sense of aesthetics and noble materials. On the program of this confidential address: retro atmosphere and decoration like a “cabinet of curiosities”.

There are luxurious leather sofas, tartan carpeting, jungle patterned wallpaper… The place is undeniably a real eye-catcher. And if not, what are we sipping? Gin, of course. Gino Baldan and his team of bartenders have concocted fancy cocktails made with Monkey 47 gin. The brand has chosen Arthur Orlans as the world’s leading flagship…

This could perhaps become your new HQ?
Rue Antoine Dansaertstraat 67, 1000 Brussels

Brussels Vintage Market

The Brussels Vintage Market is the monthly must-do meeting place for vintage fans for over 7 years! Discover treasures of yesteryear on the first Sunday of every month at the magnificent Halles Saint Géry, right in Brussels city centre. You’ll find a delightful blend of vintage and second-hand items at friendly prices, including clothing, accessories, jewelry, vinyl records, small furniture, toys, and decorative objects. You can also enjoy quality food and drink at the Café des Halles, to the sound of vinyl sets by our retro DJ.

Indoor and outdoor market every first Sunday of the month from 12 a.m. to 7 p.m. Free entry. Payments in cash only. Avenue de la courone 227 – Brussels

Kif Kif

This Aladdin’s cave-style restaurant near the Ixelles étangs (ponds) does an incredible fusion of Moroccan and Jewish cuisine.

Golden tagines in heavy clay pots and carafes of ruby-colored Middle Eastern wines emerge from the kitchen, along with the most intoxicating smells.

Take a post-dinner stroll around the lush green ponds to work off your meal and the jewel-like pistachio pastries, dripping in honey, that the waiters present you with as you leave.

A large tagine with couscous is about €16.
KifKif, Square de Biarritz 1, +32 2 644 18 10, no website. – Photo by Olaiya Land

Goupil le Fol

Kitsch decor covers every inch of wall space in this former brothel, now one of Brussels’ coolest bars.

Expect to find anything from a politician’s bust to a rusty bicycle in Goupil’s three-story boudoir.

Sink into a chintzy velvet sofa among the candles and sip on the house speciality: secret-recipe hazelnut wine served ice-cold in a huge glass.

If you’re feeling brave, head up to the third floor to join couples smooching to the sounds of old French jazz on the record player.
Goupil le Fol, Rue de la Violette 22,