Bruxelles, i Dintorni – Belgio

Brussels, the Surroundings – Belgium

Pastries to fortify us for our journey

On our last day in Brussels, we picked up some (amazing) pastries, and then headed out in the car to see a couple of the more distant sites.

National Basilica of the Sacred Heart

First stop – the crazy looking National Basilica. We’ve seen lots of cathedrals in our travels … but nothing quite like this. You could see that it had the basic cathedral shape – but it was like it had lots of other stuff tacked onto it.

Looking along the side of the basilica

A view from the side and below

One of the many nativities

Inside the cathedral was an exhibit that said it was supposed to be largest nativity in the world. I’m pretty sure I convinced Ryan and our friend that we should go in … I kind of have a thing for Nativities.

Nativity and Stained Glass – upstairs

Upstairs there were easily a hundred different nativities set up – and I was captivated. They were everything from wood carvings to clay, painted, clothed or simple. I was entranced. I love seeing the nativities that are so intricate, or that put the holy family in modern day scenes.

A more modern nativity

A view of the large scale nativity – looking along the nave towards the transept

On the main floor was the ‘largest nativity in the world’ … which was completely underwhelming. It was fake mannequin figures … sometimes with their noses having fallen off. There were a few live animals in a pen in the corner though, which was a little amusing.

View from the roof – check out the Atomium in the distance

After wandering through all of the nativities, we went up to the roof for a (windy,cold) view.

A view along the park, straight into the city

Self-portrait on the roof

And then one last stop on our way out of town … and we were on our way to the next place …

Atomium

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