7 Fantastic Places To Visit In Belgium For Families

Two kids sit together on the wall of a canal in Bruges.
Photo Courtesy: Gunjan Prakash

When it comes to a vacation in Europe, these places in Belgium for families should be at the top of your list! Known for its Medieval cities, beautiful countryside, and abundance of art and culture, this small country in Western Europe is a wonderful place to take kids. From the fascinating castles of Bruges to the Grand Place in Brussels, there are endless museums, historical landmarks, and other family-friendly attractions to add to your itinerary. Families can also enjoy Belgium’s delicious food, from waffles to chocolate to fresh seafood. Plus, not only is it a gorgeous country with plenty of activities for the entire family, but it’s also very safe, clean, and walkable. Next time you’re planning a trip to Belgium with kids, consult our list of the best places in Belgium for families! 

Best Places in Belgium for Families Who Love History & Culture

Belgium is a country with a rich history and culture. From the art galleries and museums of Brussels to the historical buildings of Antwerp and everything in between, there are a ton of different options for families who want to learn something new. Keep reading to find out the best places in Belgium for families who love history and culture! 

Ghent

A young boy stands next to a boat along a canal in Ghent, one of the best places in Belgium for families.
Photo Courtesy: Gunjan Prakash

Ghent is a beautiful city in Belgium that’s perfect for exploring with kids! Located in the country’s northern Flemish region, this Medieval destination is filled with historical landmarks, family-friendly museums, parks, and plenty of other things to do. No wonder it’s one of the best places in Belgium for families! Ghent even has a child-friendly app ‘Fosfor the dragon’, designed for families with young children.

Things to Do in Ghent with Kids

Since the city center is walkable and extremely easy to navigate, it’s possible to roam at your own pace. Kids will love taking in the ancient architecture, browsing the cute cafes and boutiques, and learning about the Flemish culture. The Gravensteen Castle is a great option for families who want to learn more, as it’s also an interactive museum. Kids can wander the different rooms and enjoy seeing the armor and weapons! If your kids are interested in art, be sure to check out the Museum of Fine Arts, Design Museum Ghent (temporarily closed for renovations until 2024), or Museum of Contemporary Art. Or, for a truly unique experience, take them to see the Adoration of the Mystic Lamb painting at St. Bavo’s Cathedral. Get a great view of the city from the top of the Ghent belfry if you’re feeling brave! 

Kids who want a more outdoorsy activity will also enjoy taking a stroll through one of the city’s many parks, like Citadel park. Or, go for a boat ride on the canal to see Ghent’s colorful waterfront. Seasonal activities include visiting the Ghent Christmas Market. And, of course, no trip to Ghent would be complete without a stop at one of the city’s many chocolate shops!

To learn more about the city, GetYourGuide offers a Ghent: 50-Minute Medieval Center Guided Boat Trip.

Bruges

A trip to Bruges is a vacation that your family will remember for years to come! Located in northwestern Belgium, this scenic city is the capital of West Flanders, making it perfect for a getaway with kids. Many of the best things to do in Bruges with kids are free, so it’s great for budget travelers too. Plus, the city is full of historical landmarks and attractions that will be sure to fascinate your little ones. 

Vrbo has many homestay options in Bruges! Reserve today1

Things to Do in Bruges with Kids

Walk around the old city center, where families can see the picturesque canals and buildings. Don’t forget to visit one of the most photographed spots in the city, Rozenhoedkaai, or the ‘Quay of the Rosary.’ Enjoy a lovely view from a nearby restaurant or cafe while dining on a Belgian waffle or other local delicacies and plates. Plus, you can take a boat tour to see the city from a different perspective.

Then, head to one of the city’s many museums or art galleries, like The Groeningemuseum. Families can easily spend a day exploring the Historium Bruges, where kids will adore the interactive exhibits and dressing up. This living history museum tells the story of Bruges. Afterward, a play area with reflective questions is available to children. Alternatively, if a farm visit is more your style, head to the outskirts of Bruges to visit Kinderboerderij De Zeven Torentjes (Children’s farm). Here, meander through beautiful meadows, visit the stables, and meet an array of farm animals like horses and chickens.

Of course, kids will delight in visiting The Chocolate Museum and learning all about how chocolate is made. They can even make their own! Don’t forget to visit Market Square, where you can find many more delicious Belgian treats (don’t miss trying a waffle on the stick!).

Alternatively, take a leisurely stroll through one of the parks with playgrounds or go for a ride on one of the city’s many horse-drawn carriages. The Begijnhof is a beautiful outdoor courtyard that’s perfect for a picnic lunch. Meanwhile, Minnewater Lake, tucked in the southern end of Bruges, is also a perfect place to cool down in the shade and see swans. 

Book your Private Historical Tour: The Highlights of Bruges through Viator today!

Antwerp

The market square in Antwerp, with a vibrant sunset in the distance at one of the best places in Belgium for families.

If you’re looking for a fun and kid-friendly place to visit in Belgium, Antwerp is a great option! There’s plenty to see and do in this vibrant city in the northern Flemish region, from exploring its many historical landmarks to enjoying its delicious food. And, best of all, Antwerp is very welcoming to kids, making it one of the best places to visit in Belgium for families! 

Things to Do in Antwerp with Kids

Begin by exploring Antwerp’s old city, where families can walk the cobblestone streets and appreciate the extravagant Medieval architecture of famous landmarks like the Cathedral of our Lady. Grote Markt, the main city square, has a towering statue with which kids will want to take a picture! Or, visit Steen Castle, then ride the adjacent Antwerp Eye for an epic view of the city.

Zoo Antwerpen, one of the oldest zoos in Europe, is another wonderful place to bring kids. If your kids are into art, then a visit to the Rubens House is a must. They can see how the famous painter lived and worked, and even try their hand at painting themselves! For something unique, take them to the Plantin-Moretus Museum. Here, they can learn about the history of printing and see old printing presses in action.

Families searching for something a little more outdoorsy can go for a walk or bike ride in one of Antwerp’s many parks, like Nachtegalen Park or ​​Rivierenhof. If your kids are into sports, there are also several kid-friendly sports facilities in Antwerp too. And of course, don’t forget the delicious Belgian chocolate!

Get active with an Antwerp Highlights: 2-Hour Bike Tour through GetYourGuide! 

Brussels

Take an exciting trip to Brussels, the capital of Belgium! Famous for its kid-friendly museums, delicious restaurants, and a mixture of Flemish and French culture, this charming city is perfect for a family vacation. Besides abundant activities for all ages, Brussels is also easy to navigate. It’s extremely walkable, too, so you won’t have any trouble getting around with your little ones in tow. 

Things to Do in Brussels with Kids

Start your trip at Grand Place, a stunning medieval square filled with ornate buildings. Kids will also love exploring the chocolate shops and markets around the historical city center. The Royal Palace is another must-see, as it is one of the city’s most beautiful buildings (open end of July to the end of August). Brussels also has several interactive museums for little ones, including the Brussels City Museum, the Musical Instruments Museum, and the Comics Art Museum. The Museum of Natural Sciences is also a great place for kids to see dinosaurs. Families who want to learn more about Belgium can head to Mini-Europe, showcasing miniature versions of famous European landmarks. Another popular attraction is the Atomium, a giant steel structure built for the 1958 World’s Fair. For something truly unique, don’t miss the Manneken Pis statue of a little boy peeing – it’s a local icon!

If your kid has a sweet tooth, take a chocolate-making workshop. Or, visit Choco-Story Brussels, where kids can learn about the history of chocolate and watch live demonstrations. For a break from sightseeing, head to one of the many playgrounds or take a ride on the Maelbeek metro line, which has its own cartoon characters. There are also several parks in Brussels where kids can run around and explore, such as the Parc du Cinquantenaire and Parc de Bruxelles.

GetYourGuide also offers a Brussels: 1-Hour Belgian Chocolate Workshop and a ​​Brussels: Guided Walking Tour.

Dinant

A charming view of colorful buildings along the water's edge in Dinant, one of the best places in Belgium for families.

Families looking for small-town charm with big-city adventures will love Dinant in Belgium’s French-speaking Wallonia region. As one of the best places to visit in Belgium for families, it’s filled with fascinating history, hip breweries, cute cafes, and a vibrant arts scene, there are plenty of things to do and see with kids. However, since Dinant is small and compact, it’s also an ideal day trip from Brussels, around an hour away. 

Things to Do in Dinant with Kids

Your first stop should surely be the Citadel. This imposing 19th-century fortress offers great views of the town and the river. Kids will love exploring all the nooks and crannies, plus there’s also an interactive museum. After, take a walk through the picturesque old town and enjoy the views from the numerous bridges. Remember to venture to the Church of Notre Dame de Dinant to see the amazing rock formations against the landscape. Then, climb to the top of the belfry for breathtaking views of the cityscape. Families can also go on a boat ride down the Meuse River. You’ll enjoy gorgeous scenery and might even see some wildlife! The city is also home to several interesting museums, like the Maison Adolphe Sax, which has interactive exhibits about the history of the saxophone. 

For a more active day out, head to Parc Dinant Adventure. Kids can burn off some energy climbing, zip-lining, and playing in the tree houses. A half-hour away, families can visit one of Belgium’s best geological wonders, Les Grottes de Han. This natural complex of caves is brimming with incredible stalactites and stalagmites. Lastly, Dinant is one of the best places in Belgium for families because of its tasty cuisine. Try the local specialty, couque de Dinant, a sweet cookie famous for its hard texture.

Book a homestay in a charming cottage in Dinant here through Vrbo!

Get into the holiday spirit at one of the Best Christmas Markets in Europe For Families

Leuven 

A few people sit in the grass, enjoying a lovely day in a park in Leuven, Belgium.
Photo Courtesy: Visit Leuven

Enjoy an unforgettable adventure to one of Belgium’s oldest university towns, Leuven! Located a half-hour east of Brussels, this adorable town is perfect for day-trippers who want to escape the city. From outdoor green spaces to weekly outdoor markets, experience one of Belgium’s lesser-known towns and take in some scenic views in the process. If you’re staying in Bruges, it’s also less than an hour and a half away. 

Things to Do in Leuven with Kids

You’ll notice Leuven’s grandiose Town Hall (Stadhuis), one of the city’s most iconic architectural marvels in the historical city center. Kids will love people-watching in the square, looking at all the ornate statues, and seeing the old universities on Naamsestraat. Families can also visit the nearby St Peter’s Church, home to a famous Last Supper painting. Or, relax in one of the cafes lining Oude Markt. If you’re looking for something more educational, take kids to the ​​Museum of Zoology KULeuven, a natural history museum with cool artifacts and a giant whale. Art lovers can admire the extensive collection at the M-Museum and learn more about Leuven through stunning masterpieces. For a fun family outing, you can also take a boat cruise on the Leuven-Dijle canal.

To get out in nature, take a lovely stroll around the Botanical Garden Kruidtuin and appreciate the flowers. Kessel-Lo, a small town northeast of central Leuven, houses the well-known Kessel-Lo Provincial Domain park. It features free and fun outdoor activities for all ages, from a small zoo with a petting area to swimming pools, playgrounds, and more. Visiting Leuven in the winter? Stop by the Leuven Christmas Market. It’s over 600 years and is a great place to find unique gifts! 

Here are the best Mild Weather European Destinations For A Family Summer Vacation

Best Places in Belgium for Families Who Love Outdoor Adventures

Looking for an outdoor adventure in Belgium? You may be surprised to discover this European country also has hiking, biking, and other outdoor sports. Here are the best places in Belgium for families who love outdoor adventures! 

The Ardennes

Several sheep graze in a verdant field at sunset in Stavelot, located in the Belgium Ardennes.
Photo Courtesy: Lloyd Dirks

Belgium isn’t exactly known for its outdoor adventures – unless you’re vacationing in The Ardennes! Thrill-seeking families who adore hiking, biking, kayaking, and immersing themselves in nature will love this region in southeast Belgium. Extending into Luxembourg, it’s home to three different rivers: Lesse, Ourthe, and Semois, making it quite popular in the spring when water levels rise. Families visiting Belgium in the summer can also take advantage of everything exciting The Ardennes has to offer!

Things to Do in The Ardennes with Kids

For families in search of idyllic hiking, look no further than Rochehaut. With verdant green hills, lush forests, and views of the Semois, it’s the ideal place to take a peaceful stroll. Route 43, a 2.7-mile hike that starts at the Church of Rochehaut, isn’t too difficult for kids and has nice views of the Belgian countryside. Since the Semois features beginner rapids, Rochehaut provides the perfect terrain for kayaking or canoeing down the river. Rentals from local providers are usually available near the river.

Or, try something different and descend into the mysterious Cave of Lorette. Other towns of interest in The Ardennes include Liege and Boullion. In Theux, animal lovers will be impressed by Forestia, a wildlife park featuring bears, wolves, deer, and other animals. There’s also zip lining and a treetop adventure course for children feeling adventurous! 

One of the most remote (and smallest!) towns in Belgium, Torgny, is also located in The Ardennes. Reminiscent of Southern France, it boasts a Mediterranean charm, colorful houses, and fields filled with pretty flowers. It may be a little out of the way, but it’s worth the trip and surely one of the best places in Belgium for families! 

Planning a trip to Europe with little ones? Read about the 10 Best Places to Travel with Kids in Europe

Happy Travels!

We hope you liked this list featuring 7 Fantastic Places To Visit In Belgium For Families! From art museums to historical city centers, scenic canals, and of course, delicious chocolate, Belgium is surely a wonderful country for your next European vacation. Enjoy Belgium with your kids! 

*Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the attractions, accommodations, or things to do on this list may be closed. Please ensure availability before making your decision. 

*This post may contain affiliate links that may earn us a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links in no way inform the hotels, sights, products, or other recommendations included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations expressed here are compiled from submissions submitted by the generous members of our Families Who Love To Travel community.

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The Families Love Travel Team has a zest for life and an even bigger passion for globetrotting! Comprised of real-life travel professionals, we work hard behind the scenes to provide dynamic solutions for adventuring with children. Our enthusiastic team understands the challenges that often accompany traveling with kids and is committed to making Families Love Travel an inclusive space to convey these experiences.