So often I had thought when seeing pictures again, I should finally visit the Royal Greenhouses at Laeken Castle, Brussels, Belgium. However for me Brussels is at least a five-hour train ride, so it is not something you’d really like to do in one day. And unfortunately the Greenhouses are only open three weeks a year. But last year a Dutch friend of mine, living in Antwerpen, invited me for his birthday just in this period. A good reason to make it a whole weekend and visit the Greenhouses on Sunday 24 April 2016, the day after the birthday party. Of course you can take the tram from the Brussels-South railway station, but me and two friends who accompanied me decided to walk. Although there had been hail and rain earlier that day, it was dry. We did pass the Church of Our Lady of Laeken, where the Belgian royals are being buried. We decided to leave that for the way back (and then it surprisingly turned out to be closed). Finally at the palace we had to queue. Hoping it wouldn’t take that long as we had to go back home in the evening by train/plane. But unfortunately it took about 2 1/2 hours before we finally entered through the gates. And during this time we saw it all, from hail to rain and cold wind and a bit of sun. We were happy to move again as we were rather stiff and cold. Bag control, ticket sale and then inside the entrance building of the Greenhouses. And the big surprise! When leaving the entrance building there was suddenly blue sky and sun all over the place, as if we had landed in a totally different world. Unfortunately because of the long queue we had to keep our visit a bit short, but it was more than worth the waiting. No time in the end to sit down and have something to drink and eat, but of course we had a look at the souvenir shop where they sold some lovely new postcards of the Belgian royal family.
For a lot of my pictures go: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nettyroyal/sets/72157667977436630
In 2017 the Greenhouses will be open from 14 April 2017 to 5 May 2017. Again special security measures, but that is not too bad. The best is to go without a bag, but who can do without one? Entrance fee is 2,50 Euro (for a good cause). Especially in the weekend don’t go last minute at the end of the day … rather long queues can be expected. See for more information monarchie.be