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Brussels in summer, city of festivals

Close your eyes and imagine Brussels. What goes through your mind? It's a city with a serious European district, where the brains of a whole continent are located. You're right, and a visit to the European district is a must no matter whether you're in Brussels for three days or just an afternoon.

But there is more, much more. This is a city with an interesting millennial history, which is hidden in some of the most important monuments in Brussels. Just pay attention and you can hear snippets of that history, from in one of the many centuries-old Belgian taverns to among its great monuments.

The arrival of summer adds even more plans and leisure options to the Belgian capital. The fun, the music and the laughs are right there, you just have to know where to look for them. And that's why we're here, we're going to talk about the city's best festivals in the summer season. 


Summer Music Festivals in Brussels 2024

In addition to the city's typical well-known plans, such as visiting the best waffle places in all of Brussels, and not so well-known, such as discovering the city's hidden gems, there are now festivals to visit.

Although at first glance it may not seem to fit in with the city's philosophy, Brussels is a very lively place, full of people from all over the world, and only positive things can come out of this melting pot.


We start with a huge event in much of the country, the Fête de la Musique. This is a festival which, in this 2024 edition, takes place from 20 to 23 June throughout the province of Brussels, as well as in cities such as Liège and Luxembourg.

The festival is made up of a large number of free concerts that explore musical genres such as rap, pop, rock, classical music and jazz. It's a gift in the form of music for all those who want to have a good time surrounded by people with the same desire to enjoy themselves.


We continue our tour of Budapest's summer festivals with the Couleur Café Festival. The 2024 edition will be held from 28 to 30 June. Its location is fantastic, as you'll be just a stone's throw from the Atomium, one of the most iconic and Instagrammable places in Brussels. Specifically, the Couleur Café festival takes place in the Atomium square, outside the city centre.

The festival brings together the best of what is known as world music, an urban mix of sounds from all corners of the globe. More than sixty concerts with the participation of DJs from all corners of the world to get you dancing non-stop during these three days of summer.

Artists such as Tyla, Bad Gyal, Ferra Gola, Masego, JPEGMAFIA, Masego, Sho Madjozi and many more will bring rhythms from genres such as reggae, hip, hop, electronica and soul to create a unique event.


On 6 and 7 July you have a date with the Brosella Festival, a festival of ethno-urban music and jazz in the heart of Brussels, as they define themselves. And the truth is that the idea couldn't be more straightforward or clearer.

Since 1977, its intention has been to attract local and international artists, making diversity its banner. Toots Thielemans, Didier Lockwood, Marquis Hill, Fred Hersch or the Brussels Jazz Orchestra are just some of the many names that will perform on stage. The entrance to the festival may look familiar; just below the Atomium.


We changed the profile of the festival and the location - you think classical music has no place at festivals? Well, think again because Brussels has a very special place for classical music fans.

The Midsummer Mozartiade festival opens the doors to the world of composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The Austrian genius will be playing from 17 to 23 June throughout the city of Brussels.

He will have the audience singing and enjoying his great operas in many corners of the city, from the Théâtre Royal des Galeries to the Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert. A festival to pay tribute to a master of music and to prove that classical music will never go out of fashion.


Other summer festivals in Brussels 2024

Although music is everywhere, it is not the central focus of each and every festival. It is, however, very important at the Bal National, a big party held at the Place du Jeu de Balle on 20 July, where music, humour and lots of dancing with family and friends come together.


But if we are talking about important events in Brussels, we have to talk about the Ommegang, the incredible and historically accurate re-enactment of the arrival of Emperor Charles V and his son Philip, later Philip II, on the Grand Place.

This is no ordinary event, with over 1,500 participants in typical 16th century costumes. The parade passes through well-known and important places in Brussels. It is the central event of the Brussels Renaissance Festival.

Such is the importance of the Ommegang that in 2019 it was added to the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.


To end our tour, let's talk about one of its star products: beer. Not only of the best Belgian beer bars in Brussels, but also of festivals that worship it.

On the first weekend of September, the well-known Belgian Beer Weekend takes place; Belgisch Bierweekend, in its 2024 edition from 6 to 8 September.

Organised by the National Federation of Belgian Brewers, this annual event brings together the entire sector around the Grand Marché, the big market. With the participation of more than 70 members, comprising large and medium-sized breweries.

Although the opening ceremony is usually held in the town hall, accompanied by a keynote speech and the subsequent awards ceremony, what really matters is the Grand Marché, where you'll get a brewing history lesson and get to taste all the flavours and concepts you can imagine.


And if that's not enough for you, or if you're a radical beer fan, Brussels also has the BXLBeerFest festival. Where the main artist is, once again, the local beer.

The 2024 edition will take place on the weekend of 28 and 29 September. And let no one dare say that the end of September no longer belongs to summer, because that is a serious mistake. Summer is not a concept of time, but of mood. So this event takes place in the middle of summer.

This event is more extensive as it welcomes breweries from Belgium and the rest of the world, as well as meetings with chefs, workshops, talks, tastings and many more activities organised to enjoy this millenary drink.