High Expectations For Belgium

I really had high expectations for Brussels and Antwerp. Being an old city, I was looking forward to visiting and seeing it in all its glory. The start of the trip should've been an ominous sign. I remember talking to the person who helped me with our EuroStar tickets. She asked me why we would want to visit Belgium. She said that there's nothing special about it. I should've listened!

Anyway, traffic entering the city. We didn't see any accidents or detour, it is just backed-up. When we finally got in the city, there was no parking to be found. There weren't even any useful signs, no directions towards the famous Brussells monument. What a disappointment. After driving around for an hour, we gave up and just went to see the Atomium. It is a huge building that is shaped like an atom which was built for an exhibition in the 50's. We then proceeded to have lunch in the area and the kids rode the merry-go-round.

Afterwards, we drove to Antwerp which is called the 'Diamond Capital of the World'. My impression: it's crowded and congested just like Manila (not as worst though). I thought we'd have the same problem with parking but we found a parking space. We went to see the Antwerp Hauptbanhof (train station), this one definitely impressed me. It is beautiful inside! Too bad they had cranes up front, they're still in the process of renovation. It was also here that I had my first taste of a REAL Belgian Waffle which I wrote about in my food blog, Kusinera sa Amerika.

Beside the train station is the street that is lined up with jewelry stores selling diamonds. I had to try real hard not to buy a piece of jewelry for myself. Dh said that it's ok if I get something but being the CFO, I know how much the trip was costing us so I had to decline. Ugghh...

So, what in Belgium impressed me other than the Belgian waffle? The Belgian chocolates! They are out of this world and the best. The first time I tried one, it totally melted in my mouth. It is hard to describe, it tastes out of this world. One famous chocolate shop in Belgium is Leonidas, they have shops all over the country and I also saw some in neighboring Netherlands. Good news is that they are selling the chocolates at Amazon.com. So, what are we waiting for, let's go order a pound or two of these delicious and mouth-watering chocolates.

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