Why go to Brussels?
It offers modern facilities and good tourist information, along with access to canal sightseeing tours
Only riverboats can dock in the city, with large cruise ships using Antwerp or Zeebrugge instead
There is little of interest in the immediate port vicinity, yet good transport options are available
Brussels Cruise Port Facilities?
There's little to see at Brussels' ports, so hop on the metro system (buses are available at Heembeekkaai, while the Beco dock is near the Yser metro station) and head downtown.
Antwerp's gorgeous cathedral and famous Diamond District make it worth a day trip if you've already been to Brussels. Trains run directly to and from Brussels and take about 45 minutes.
Zeebrugge is a largely industrial port city that's mainly used as a jumping-off point for day trips to Bruges or Brussels. To get to Brussels, just head for the train station; the trip will take about an hour and 15 minutes, with a change of trains in Bruges.
Liege is another city worthy of a day trip. About 1 hour from Brussels by train, this city of about 195,000 is tucked in the Meuse River valley. Locals will tell you there are two types of Belgium waffles -- Brussels and Liege -- and even those who live in the capital prefer the Liege version.
Good to Know?
Metro stations, museums and streets are often known by two names, one in French and one in Flemish -- so keep that in mind when asking for directions and navigating your way around the city. For instance, if you're looking for Grand Place and you find yourself in Grote Markt, you're in the right spot.
Also be aware that most Brussels museums are closed on Mondays.
On Foot: Once in the city center, it's easy to walk between Brussels' main attractions -- just remember to pack comfortable shoes for navigating the cobblestones.
By Metro: When you get tired of walking, hop onto Brussels' efficient Metro system, which operates subways, trams and buses. You can purchase single ride tickets or an unlimited day pass.
By Taxi: There are many taxi stands throughout the city, particularly near major train stations and hotels. You can also hail cabs from the street, but it may be difficult to find one during rush hour.
By Car: We don't recommend using a car in Brussels, as navigating the crowded streets can be more trouble than it's worth, and efficient train service is available both within the city and to most of the surrounding cities and towns. That said, Auto Europe, Avis and other major rental agencies offer multiple pickup locations in Brussels.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money?
The local currency is the euro. Visit www.xe.com for up-to-date conversion rates. ATMs are plentiful in the city center.
Brussels is a town of many tongues. Nearly all street signs are in both French and Flemish (a variant of Dutch), Belgium's two official languages. English is also widely spoken.
Where You're Docked?
Only river ships are small enough to fit through Brussels' canals, and they dock at either Heembeekkaai or the Beco dock. Though both ports are within city limits, only the Beco dock is a comfortable walking distance from downtown.
Big ships dock farther away in Antwerp or Zeebrugge. Train service connects both cities to Brussels.