Visiting Brussels and the European Parliament

Brussels and the European Parliament

Earlier this month before all the Christmas festivities began I went to Brussels in Belgium for a 2 day trip.  It was an organised event for local business owners to visit the European Parliament which is situated in Brussels.

Brussels and the European Parliament

After an early morning start we arrived in Brussels and headed to check in at the hotel.  It was then a short walk to the European Parliament area where we had some food – There’s something about travelling which makes me extra hungry!  After we were able to go and visit the European Parliment.  Our visit was not long after the Paris attacks and the weekend before Brussels had been put on lockdown so as was to be expected security for Parliament was high.

We had a tour of the European Parliament, followed by a talk of the history and how the Parliament works and is put together.  This was followed by a talk by our Yorkshire MEP Amjad Bashir.  We followed this up by sitting in on a committee which was certainly interesting.  We sat with our earphones on and listened to the English interpreter when someone was speaking a different language.  It’s really incredible how the system works effectively.

Brussels and the European Parliament

It was time to head back to the hotel for a quick turnaround before we went for an evening meal which was hosted by Amjad Bashir.  It was a great evening.

The next morning we had free time before our late night flight home.  We began with breakfast in the hotel and then got a taxi into Brussels centre.  We had a look around and stopped for a hot chocolate in the Grand Place.  There is certainly no shortage of chocolate shops in Belgium and we sampled a few chocolates before looking at the Christmas market.  We only saw a little bit of the market but I believe it is about 2 miles long, I’d love to go back to explore this more and make the most of the market.  It began to rain and so we went in search of lunch.

Brussels and the European Parliament

In Brussels there is an area where all the restaurants are and they were all very quiet.  It seemed the lockdown and high level security was having an effect which is such a shame.  I felt safe the whole time and as was discussed whilst visiting the European Parliament it was probably the safest time to visit.  There were plenty of armed guards walking around and they were also manning key buildings.

Brussels and the European Parliament

We had a lovely lunch and I had the traditional moules which were nice.  The rain began to get heavier and so we went into another cafe/bar before watching the lightshow which took place in the Grand Place.  I put a video of this on my instagram here.  It was then time to make our way to the airport and fly home.

Brussels and the European Parliament

It was a really good 2 days and I’d certainly like to go back to Brussels for the Christmas market.  Have you been to Brussels or is it somewhere you’d like to visit?

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