“An eclectic mix of experiences makes Flanders, Belgium, unique: gastronomy; art, architecture and heritage; cycling; fashion and design,” says Marco Frank, trade manager for Visit Flanders.
According to Frank, the region, which covers much of the northern part of Belgium, offers affordable lodging compared to other European destinations, easy communication for North American visitors (English is widely spoken) and excellent connections to the rest of the continent. But he especially emphasizes Flanders’ culinary and artistic offerings.
“Culinary experiences are always on the top of the list when you are trying to immerse yourself in local cultures,” says Frank. “We have the highest number of Michelin-starred restaurants per capita anywhere in Europe.”
In addition to its high-end eateries, Flanders’ culinary scene is populated by talented chefs running zero-waste kitchens, emerging microbrewers and purveyors of classic street foods.
In the coming years, the Flemish masters of Renaissance, Primitive and Baroque painting will be in the spotlight as Visit Flanders encourages visitors to explore the towns in which these artists lived and worked.
“The tourist office is putting a lot of emphasis on our Flemish Masters campaign, which will run from 2018 to 2020,” says Frank. “We will highlight three different painters: Rubens (Antwerp) in 2018, Bruegel (Brussels) in 2019 and van Eyck (Ghent) in 2020.
“The focus will not only be on the old painters, but we will mix in our new Flemish masters as well. So, it will be an eclectic mix of old and new.”
Top photo: The Royal Museum of Fine Arts Belgium
Photo by Visit Flanders