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Brussels folklore

Discover typical Brussels legends, delicious regional specialities and traditions going back many generations.
Brussels has a long history, with legends and traditions going back many generations. Explore the city’s art or try some of the region’s delicious specialities.

Once upon a time…

Brussels is home to many age-old legends and customs.

  • By far the most celebrated of the Brussels legends is the one about Manneken Pis. This funny little statue, which has become the symbol of Brussels, is a must-see attraction for everyone who visits the city.
  • The Théâtre de Toone is as old as Belgium. The tradition of this puppet theatre is passed on from generation to generation.
  • The Meyboom is carried around Brussels escorted by giants of Brussels every 9 August. This major popular festival is recognised by Unesco.
  • The Ommegang at the start of July restages the arrival of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor into Brussels in the 16th century. It is a parade with a cast of thousands in medieval traditional dress.

See the section over folklore on the website of the City of Brussels.

Brussels specialities

You can also explore Brussels with your taste buds. The Region boasts plenty of Brussels specialities. Alongside the classics, such as chocolate, waffles and beer, Brussels is also home to such local favourites as 'pains à la grecque', 'caricoles', 'anguilles au vert' and 'tartines de plattekeis'.

Brussels in art

Art is the ideal way to find out more about Brussels. The city has often been depicted in films, plays, books and comic strips. A great way to explore Brussels’ soul.

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