Enjoy a rare glimpse into the lives of the Belgian Royal Family. You may even catch sight of the King or Queen.
The Royal Palace of Brussels in the centre of the capital is the official palace of the King and Queen of Belgium, but the royals don’t actually live here. Instead, it’s where they work. Their main residence is actually located on the outskirts of Brussels. The Royal Palace is where state visits are held and it’s where Heads of State stay when in visiting the capital.
For more than 200 years, Belgian monarchs have worked from the Royal Palace and for most of the year it is closed to the public. However, since 1965, the doors have been opened in the summer months and the public has the opportunity to see the sumptuous rooms in all their glory and gain an insight into the lives of the King and Queen.
The palace is located in front of Brussels Park and facing the palace on the other side of the park is the Palace of the Nation, or the Belgian Federal Parliament building. The beautiful gardens that surround the palace make a fitting entrance to the palace and its imposing façade. In the late 19th century, King Leopold II decided that the palace wasn’t grand enough and he made various changes to the exterior, including the addition of various sculptures.
The palace opens to visitors after the national holiday on 21 July, until the beginning of September. Wander through the imposing Grand Hall with its collection of 19th century masterpieces, and the magnificent 45-metre long Throne Room, which is lit by 11 stunning chandeliers and an elaborate mosaic parquet floor. Art lovers also have an opportunity to see contemporary works from four of Belgium’s most critically acclaimed artists.
The Royal Palace of Brussels is located just east of downtown and can be reached by car or metro. There is ample street parking in the area for a modest fee. The palace gardens can be visited daily throughout the year, while in summer the interior can be accessed every day except for Monday. Admission is free.