The Park du Viaduc is one of the lesser known green areas of Brussels. Hidden behind a street of the same name, it is very unlikely that you’ll meet here anyone else than residents of this Ixelles neighborhood. I am a big fan of these small lesser known parks where you can come and spend some quiet time reading a book or just relax under a peaceful apple tree. The place is always uncrowded, a little less on Wednesday afternoons when school is off or on holidays where you might encounter a few families with children investing the playground but even then there’s still plenty of room for everyone to coexist peacefully. Also a great place to enjoy a peaceful picnic with friends, just the right mix of shade, sun for everyone to enjoy on the well kept lawns . Park personnel are always present and do their little round and make sure that everyone respects the rules in a friendly and pleasant manner.
Parc du Viaduc is best for those who:
Are already in the neighborhood and are looking for a quiet and lesser known alternative
Le Parc d’Egmont (The Egmont Park) is composed of the formed-gardens of the Egmont palace which were modified several times between the XVI century and 1902, dates on which architect Galoppin laid it out as it is now. This park forms a pleasant little oasis of peace and tranquility in the heart of a very busy urban district.
Park Leopold’s Main entrance on rue Belliard just beyond the Parliament buildings. Set on the edge of the new European Union infrastructures and following on from the Maelbeek Valley, which stretches from the woods at La Cambre and the lakes in Ixelles to square Marie-Louise, this public park is a haven of peace and tranquility in the midst of the bustle of the urban thoroughfare that is rue Belliard.
The district is currently undergoing a total transformation as is obvious from the impressive number of tower cranes around.
The park was originally designed to be used as a zoo, hence the inscriptions visible on each side of the main entrance.
The park was opened in the middle of the 19C and given its current name to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Independence.
This pleasant, peaceful spot has a lake on which it is not unusual to see herons. The park lies on a steep slope and is overlooked by the rear facades of the two wings of the Museum des Sciences Naturelles.
Since 1983, this complex hosts the Cultural Center of the French-speaking Community of Brussels and Wallonia. It was built in 1826-29 by T.-F Suys and P.-F. Gineste. The monumental structure is typical of XVIllth century orangeries: a central rotunda with a wing on each side, each ending on a pavilion.
The botanical gardens lie in particularly pleasant surroundings and now host and organise a wide range of special events such as theatrical productions (in the great central rotunda), musical evenings (song, dance), cinema and temporary exhibitions. In September, the gardens play host to Les Nuits Botanique Festival, with numerous pop, rock and soul concerts.
Originally the gardens. which were partly laid out by Charles Henri Petersen, consisted of three terraces overlooking a lake, each in a different style.
way across the pound
The pond of the botanical gardens
They have since been altered slightly as a result of the construction of the Gare du Nord railway station.
the relocation of the plant collection in Meise, the damage caused during the war, and the building of an underpass which decreased the overall area by half.
The old botanical gardens building and its glasshouse
The back of the park
Few of the 52 sculptures that made up the ornamentation designed by Constantin Meunier and Charles van der Stappen, two brilliant late-19C artists, have survived to the present day.
Le laurier sculpture by Julien Dillens
l’olivier sculpture by Leon Mignon
Some of them can still be seen in front of the south faÃ§ade of the building, including Spring (Hippolyte Le Roy). Summer (C Meunier), Autumn (C Meunier) and Winter (Pierre Braccke) flanking the central glasshouse.
Winter and Fall in the back
La Cigogne by Edmond Lefever
Spring at the forefront and summer in the back
A number of animal sculptures bear witness to the fashion for this new art form in the 1980s. In preparation for the 1958 World Fair. Rene PechÃ¨re was commissioned to turn the old gardens into a city centre park open to all.
Central glasshouse building
Finance tower seen in the back
It contains a few superb tree which are sure to delight those with a fondness for arboriculture or a nice spot to relax amongst the urban environment.
Maze of the Botanical gardens
The iris, the symbol of the Brussels-Capital City Region (“Region” because Belgium has been federal state since 17 February 1994), is given pride of place here and from Apri to June there are almost 40 different varieties to admire.