Where to stay in Brussels, Belgium – a full guide to the best areas to stay (including recommended hotels and apartments).
The city of Brussels is a great base to explore Belgium due to its central location. It’s a city with gorgeous architecture, diverse culinary scene and historic places.
Choosing where to stay in Brussels can be a daunting task, especially if this is your first time to the city. For your ease, I prepared this guide with the best locations to stay for tourists, shopping and nightlife. You’ll also find recommended hotels and apartments, divided into several categories.
Keep in mind, that streets are named both in French and Dutch (the metro stations as well). This could be quite confusing, so check carefully the address. Yet, English is widely spoken, so don’t worry.
Where I stayed in Brussels
Where should I stay in Brussels? I went through several districts to find an answer to this question.
I wanted an area at a walking distance to all main attractions and restaurants. In addition, the location had to be close to the Central Railway station. The reason for that was that I planned to explore not only Brussels but Bruges and Ghent as well.
So, I choose the area between the Grand Place and the Central Railway station. It suited my needs just perfectly.
It’s a 4-star hotel with spacious and comfy rooms. The location couldn’t be more perfect – 300m away from the Grand Place and the train station.
The best area to stay in Brussels for tourists
There are 19 neighbourhoods in the capital of Belgium. However, most of the popular landmarks are clustered in the Historic Centre, near the Grand Place. The only exceptions are Atomium and Mini-Europe, located in Bruxelles-Ville (Stad Brussel). Yet, you can easily reach them using the subway.
The Historic Centre is dominated by the absolutely gorgeous architecture at the Grand Place. This square is the medieval heart of Brussels. Other iconic sites as Manneken Pis and Galeries Saint Hubert are just a short walk from here.
The Historic Centre is pretty walkable, too. Booking a hotel here allows you to be within reach to the major attractions, museums and restaurants. In most cases, this is the perfect area to stay in Brussels for first-time tourists.
Choose the area around the Grand Place
If you want to be in the medieval heart of the city, right next to the main attractions and restaurants.
- top attractions to see – Grand Place, Manneken Pis, Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert, St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral
- the best shops to buy chocolate – Elisabeth, Neuhaus and Pierre Marcolini
- for some craft beer go to Delirium Monasterium
- the Central Railway station is close – less than 500m away
Recommended hotels near Grand Place
The best family hotels near Grand Place
8.5/10 Rating – See hotel images and 5,720+ guest reviews
Warwick Grand Place is the most booked hotel near Grand Place. Centrally located to the historic areas of Brussels, the hotel is a great base for a city trip. Good-sized boutique rooms with huge comfy beds and tea making facilities. The marble bathrooms are equipped with high-quality toiletries.
Location: 200m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, private parking on site, wellness facilities Guests love: rooftop bar
8.6/10 Rating – See hotel images and 2,070+ guest reviews
Radisson Blu Royal Hotel is conveniently located close to both Grand Place and the Rue Neuve shopping area. Spacious, comfortable and well-lit rooms. And the best part is that there are 3 on-site restaurants to choose from.
Location: 500m from Grand Place Facilities: babysitting, public parking on site, wellness facilities Guests love: excellent breakfast, coffee and tea facilities in the room
The best couple hotels near Grand Place
9.0/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,040+ guest reviews
Hotel Le Dixseptième is one of the closest hotels to the Grand Place. Rooms are comfy and spacious, great for relaxing after a long day out. Close to many restaurants and shops, as well as major attractions.
Location: 200m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, wellness facilities Guests love: boutique rooms
8.9/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,080+ guest reviews
The Dominican has a very central location and everything is close by. Modern rooms with extra touches like bathrobes, slippers and tea making facilities. Lovely cocktail lounge with a chill atmosphere.
Location: 350m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, 24-hour front desk, wellness facilities Guests love: Nespresso coffee machine in the room
9.2/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,000+ guest reviews
If you look for a truly unique place to stay in Brussels, then Hotel Amigo is the best choice. The location is more than perfect – just around the corner from the Grand Place. Charming public areas with a lovely ambience. Designer rooms with wide comfortable beds and smooth bed linen.
Location: 50m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, airport shuttle, public parking on site Guests love: unbeatable location
9.0/10 Rating – See apartment images and 340+ guest reviews
RealtyCare Flats feature stylish apartments close to Grand Place and the subway. Lots of restaurants and bars to hang out. The kitchen space is equipped with all cooking facilities, including a microwave and a refrigerator.
Location: 400m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, iPod dock Guests love: Nespresso coffee machine
8.9/10 Rating – See apartment images and 260+ guest reviews
If you look for a good apartment just a few steps from Grand Place, don’t look any further. Modern and clean apartments, fully supplied with everything you need. Many eating options and bars in the surrounding area.
Location: 50m from Grand Place Facilities: WiFi, soundproof windows Guests love: Nespresso coffee machine
Where to stay in Brussels for one night
If you have only one night, the best place to stay in Brussels is near the Central Railway Station. And to be precise the area between the train station and the Grand Place. In this way, you’d be at a walking distance both from the Historic Centre and the train station.
If you’re arriving from the airport, the airport train stops at the Central train station (as well as Nord and Midi stations). Also, this location is great for easy connections with the rest of Belgium.
Avoid the area around Gare du Midi, even if it seems a very convenient place when arriving by an international train. The neighbourhood is very unpleasant and shabby. I don’t recommend it especially if you travel alone.
Choose the area near the Central Railway Station
If you have one night in the city or want to use Brussels as a base to explore Belgium.
- top attractions to see – Royal Palace, St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral
- the Historic Centre is about 500m away
- it’s a convenient location to stay for the airport train or connections to the rest of Belgium
8.5/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,680+ guest reviews
Hilton Grand Place has a perfect location. Located right between Grand Place and the Central Railway station, the hotel is a great base for a city trip. Easy walking access to main tourist sites, as well for day trips and airport connections. Recently renovated spacious rooms.
Location: 50m from the station Facilities: WiFi, public parking on site, babysitting Guests love: city views, excellent location
8.8/10 Rating – See hotel images and 2,280+ guest reviews
Hotel Sandton is in a quiet area, at a walking distance both from the Central station and the Historic centre. Modern rooms with comfy beds and good bathroom amenities. The perfect place to stay in Brussels for one night for couples.
Location: 150m from the station Facilities: WiFi, private parking on site Guests love: comfy beds
The best area to stay in Brussels for nightlife
If you’re looking where to stay in Brussels for nightlife, Saint-Géry is the best choice. The area is packed with a great range of places to eat, drink and party. The district becomes very lively at summer when sidewalks cafés open for the season.
Don’t miss to visit Les Halles Saint-Géry, an ancient indoor market transformed into a bar at night.
Choose Saint-Géry area
If you want to get the best of nightlife and sightseeing
- the area is conveniently located between the Grand Place and the Christmas Market at Place Sainte-Catherine
- most of the touristic sites are within walking distance
- a lot of great places to eat – Noordzee Mer du Nord, Fin de Siecle, Boulangerie Charli
- the best place to taste some craft beer – Moeder Lambic Fontainas
8.8/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,380+ guest reviews
The hotel is located in the heart of Saint-Géry, close to restaurants, bars and clubs. In addition, it’s only 300m away from Grand Place. Modern trendy rooms with huge comfortable beds. The perfect place to stay both for nightlife and sightseeing.
Location: 10m from Les Halles Saint-Géry Facilities: WiFi, air conditioning Guests love: excellent breakfast
Where to stay in Brussels for shopping
For every shopping enthusiast, there is one place to be – Avenue Louise. The avenue runs from Place Louise to Bois de la Cambre. It’s the longest luxury shopping boulevard in the city (almost 3km). The boulevard features luxury boutiques, high-end designers and fine-dining restaurants.
If shopping is your passion, there is no other place to stay in Brussels, but here. Yet, I’ll recommend choosing the area around Place Louise. In this way, you’ll be closer to the Historic Centre and the subway.
Choose area around Avenue Louise
If shopping is your primary reason for visiting
- the area is well-connected by public transport to the rest of the city. Yet, if you prefer to walk, the Historic Centre is about 1.5km away.
- a wide range of shopping options and high-end boutiques
- plenty of restaurants to choose from, including fine-dining
8.9/10 Rating – See hotel images and 4,270+ guest reviews
If you look for a convenient hotel for shopping and sightseeing, this is the ideal choice. Location is awesome, close to Avenue Louise and the subway. If you prefer to walk, the Historic Centre is about 1km away. The spacious boutique rooms feature spectacular city views.
Location: 200m from Avenue Louise Facilities: WiFi, wellness facilities Guests love: city views
8.8/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,820+ guest reviews
A very charming and cosy hotel within reach to shops and high-end boutiques. The nearby metro station Louise makes it easy to get to the Historic Centre. Comfy designer rooms with Scandinavian touches.
Location: 200m from Avenue Louise Facilities: WiFi, private parking on site Guests love: designer interior
See the iconic Atomium and Mini-Europe.
Join a beer tasting experience to sample the most famous beers.
Take a chocolate tasting tour to sample the best gourmet chocolate.
How to get from Brussels Airports to the city centre
There are two international airports – Zaventem Airport and Charleroi Airport.
How to get to the city centre from the Zaventem Airport
Zaventem Airport (BRU) is located 12km northeast from the city. The easiest way to get to the city centre is by taking the direct train from the airport to the Central Railway station. The airport train station is under the departures and arrivals halls, at level -1. There are up to 6 trains an hour and the journey is about 20min.
You can also travel by bus (more info here).
How to get to the city centre from Charleroi Airport
Charleroi Airport (CRL) is about 50km south of the city. The easiest way to get to the city centre is by taking the shuttle bus. Besides Brussels, there are direct shuttle buses to Bruges and Ghent as well.
The shuttle bus runs every 30min and the journey is about 1 hour. Keep in mind that there is only one shuttle every 30min. So if you’re not lucky enough to be at the beginning of the queue, you’ll have to wait for the next shuttle. The shuttle bus stops at Bruxelles-Midi/Brussel Zuid.
It is advisable to book your tickets online as early as you can. The price starts from €5 (if you book early enough) and goes up to €14. Unfortunately, I didn’t know this before my trip, so I paid the full price of €14. If you decide not to book online, the ticket costs €17 at the ticket desk.
Find more places to see in DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Belgium.
Visitors often combine Brussels with:
- Bruges – a charming medieval city only 1 hour away by train.
- Ghent – a small medieval city with a gorgeous castle (a 40min journey by train).
- Antwerp – a medieval port city with a stunning cathedral (a 50min journey by train). Check out the best hotels in Antwerp city centre.
If you’re planning to rent a car, compare the car rental prices in Europe.
|I'm a travel blogger based in Sofia, Bulgaria. Travelling has always been my passion and I love to discover new places and cultures. I want to show you how easy it is to organize your vacation all by yourself.|
Subscribe to my newsletter and get once a month a full itinerary of my upcoming trips (including expenses, hotels, restaurants and a map).