As you can see the trip started off in a very civilised fashion with champagne all round in St Pancras champagne bar! It's a tough life :)
Now, I don't know about you but when I think of Belgium I think of chocolate, and boy was Brussels chocolate heaven and not a little quirky too. (My apologies for the following photos if you have resolved to give up chocolate!)
Chocolate bowler hat anyone?
No, well how about these penguins then?
You can read about the inspiration for these penguins below
Of course a trip to Belgium wouldn't be complete without some Belgian Waffles too.
Do you get the impression that these trips are more about the food than the Market?? In this case you would be right, the Christmas Market itself wasn't a patch on the Dusseldorf Market that we visited last year, but the chocolate was not a bad compensation. At one stage whilst walking around the city we counted 6 chocolate shops within sight, bad for our waistlines and our wallets :)
Finally, a first visit to Brussels has to include the obligatory visit to see the Mannekin Pis statue.
We were a bit surprised to find the statue dressed up for the day, but then discovered that he apparently has over 900 suits to choose from, many of which were donated by visiting dignitaries! The City Museum has an exhibition of 100 of the suits, but we were too busy savouring the delights of chocolate shops to visit the exhibition. There is even a calendar of the dates when he will be dressed here and although the original role of the statue was as a water fountain, there are times when the fountain spouts beer instead of water :) You can understand then how popular a figure he is !
Linking up to the first of 2014