I wanted to walk in a forest, my friend wanted to return to a favorite restaurant in Brussels and his kids wanted to eat Belgian chocolate, so we drove northwards into France’s neighboring country. Lille is located only ten miles from the French-Belgian border.
I was a little disappointed because there were no autumn colors. I described the vibrant reds, yellows, oranges and russet browns of an autumnal Canadian forest to my companions, but unless you’re actually there I guess it’s hard to imagine. I miss the majestic maple trees with their large lobed leaves and crimson red hue. 🍁
After our walk, we drove north to Brussels and had a meal in a Lebanese restaurant before heading to the main square of the city called the Grand-Place. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, The Grand-Place is the central square of the city of Brussels. It is surrounded by opulent Baroque guildhalls of the former Guilds of Brussels and two larger edifices; the flamboyant Town Hall and the neo-Gothic King’s House. Construction of the Grand-Place began in the 11th century and was largely complete by the 17th century.
No visit to Belgium is complete without buying chocolate, there are chocolate shops on every street corner, some quite opulent. In 2021, the country exported over 2.5 billion dollars worth of chocolate worldwide. Yes, it’s that good! (and reasonably priced)
The take-out hot chocolate was delicious. We drank it in the car driving back to Lille. If you’re interested in reading more blog posts about Brussels and other Belgian cities I’ve visited in the past, click on BELGIUM up top.