like every year, Brussels decorated it's city center in xmas lights. I am always very curious of the light shows in Place St Catherine and Grand Place so check out the article for this years results.
Under the name tag "Plaisirs d'Hiver" Brussels has a lot of things going on around the city
One of the most common places you meet friends in Brussels if you want to go around the center would be on the stairs in front of La Bourse. I am not really sure why, but somehow it's easy to reach if you live in the city or outside. This year was the same and we got there right before the Santa Clause parade :P
the road to Place Saint Catherine is filled with little houses with different Xmas decorations.
And not to forget sweets & the xmas flavored teas. Take limited amount of money with you as otehrwise you might overspend
Place Sainte Catherine
This needs to be split between 2 sides of the church.
Side 1 - Church entrance
Coming over from La Bourse you will first reach the front of the church, here there are 3 main special elements during Xmas time.
The Carousel - Le manege d'Andrea
Le Manege d'Andrea (Andrea's Merry-go-round) is a carousel that was built by la machine in Toulouse, France, in 1999 under the artistic and technical direction of Francois Delarozier. The ride was made with materials such as wood, leather, glass, iron, feathers, steel, tin and copper, together with several pieces from junk (motorbikes, electric fans, etc.). Every figure or seat has several mechanisms that can be activated by the children riding them. Some examples include a steering wheel on the Petit Poisson that activates gears that turns the head and tail of the fish, a lever on the seahorse that nods its head, and a crank on a steam engine that releases "steam". (Source)
here you can spot the fish in more details, long story why the fish ;)
there is this place where they prepare fresh salomn backed on a sort of wood oven which tastes super delicious. They have 3 menus.
The light show on the church
The show of this year is dedicated to Japan - Origami Lights
"The sound of the bell rings resounds in the night. Echoes wither away, leaving their place to the bell of a Shinto temple, announcing the vibrations of the Country of the Rising Sun. At the pace of the rings, the church morphs into a gigantic Torii church. As you cross the threshold, you take part to a luminous odyssey through the wonders of contemporary and traditional Japan. From the blossoming of cherry trees to origami and renowned Hokusai prints, we shall plunge into a 3D impressionist journey in the rich Japanese culture." (source)
Side 2 - @ metro St Catherine
As focus points here you can find: souvenirs, some snacks and the big wheel.
The Fairy Wheel
and you have so many options, but here some of the cutest ones
The Tree :)
Grand Place is the place where the Xmas tree is placed. This tree is received every year from a different country. This year the tree comes from a village next to Bratislava, Slovakia
The light show
Felix de Laet, AKA Lost Frequencies, chose to compose the soundtrack, thus testifying of his great love for the city.
In this exceptional setting, the melodious mix of the great Belgian DJ will resound during all five weeks of the event.
Controlled and animated by Koert Vermeulen (ACT Lighting Design), the renowned visual & lighting designer, the lights which were installed on the buildings several years ago on the listed buildings of the Grand Place will bring colour to the Lost Frequencies mix, breathing more life into it. (Source)
Place de Saint-Jean - "Angels of Freedom"
under the project Shops by night, Place Saint Jean will host 5 giant angels wings where kids & adults can take pictures. This is a nod to the first hours of Winter Wonders, who started from this magnificent square.
Mini Collection of some of the lights around
Now you have an idea of what the capital of Belgium is offering this year for the Holiday Seasons.