The history in Europe is exceptional - hundreds and thousands of years of knowledge, evolution, innovation and development all clustered on this continent. It should come as no surprise that it seems that every single city then, no matter the country, is simply bursting with museums on practically every single topic and commemorative event out there!
While living in Brussels, I've made it a focus to get out as much as I can into the city and explore some of these fantastic museums. Check out the Museum Pass which provides access to a wide range (though not all) of museums across the country for a set annual price.
1. Museum of Natural Sciences
Entry Price: €7 adult // €6 student and youth
Location: Rue Vautier 29 near Parc Léopold
This museum is outstanding, both in size and in scope. Founded in 1846, originally starting with the collection of Prince Charles Alexander of Lorraine, the exhibitions have vastly expanded to include a detailed and informative look at life on earth over hundreds of millions of years. There's an incredible dinosaur exhibit, featuring likely most importantly a collection of thirty fossilized Iguanodon skeletons discovered in 1878 in a mine in Bernissart.
There's also exhibitions on human ancestry, the animals and fauna of our planet, geology, insects and mosasaurs (marine history). There's temporary ongoing exhibitions as well that change periodically - we viewed a brilliant exhibit about Antarctica and what it means to do research in such a harsh climate.
2. Royal Museum of Fine Arts of Belgium
Entry Price: €10 adult // €3 students // free for youth
Location: Museumplein, Rue du Musée
Encompassing six different museums each dedicated to a different aspect of fine arts in Belgium, these beautiful museums are home to exquisite and intricate pieces of work. The six to choose from all have different tickets, so pick your favourite: the Oldmasters Museum, the Magritte Museum, the Fin-de-Siècle Museum, the Antoine Wiertz Museum and the Constantin Meunier Museum.
3. Museum of Art & History
Entry Price: €10 adult // free for students and youth
Location: Parc du Cinquantenaire
We made the mistake of visiting the right-hand side of the museum which is focused on religious historical art, and only got around to the left side of the museum towards the end of our visit where the exquisite collections from around the world are housed. We did not think the visit was worth it until we discovered the other half of the space, at which point we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
This museum shows exhibits on beautifully curated collections of notable worldly historical art.
4. Brussels City Museum
Entry Price: €8 adult // €4 students // free for youth
Location: Grote Markt
A small museum in the heart of the Grand Place/Grote Markt in central Brussels, this museum does a really thorough job explaining the important and significant history of Brussels' central square throughout history.
Of particular interest is the small exhibition on Mannekin Pis, Brussels' mascot of sorts. The original statue from the early 1600s actually lives in this museum now, restored after damage. The statue outside at the fountain is a replica built in 1965. The exhibition also features a timeline of Mannekin Pis, dating back to the 1400s (!), plus the many costumes and memorabilia he has inspired.