An encounter with Portugal in the cosmopolitan heart of Ixelles/Elsene
Starting from the Abbaye de la Cambre/Abdij Ter Kameren, an abbey where the spiritual meets the beauty of architecture and nature, you will walk into the cosmopolitan heart of Ixelles/Elsene, Place Flagey/Flageyplein, to explore Brussels’ Little Portugal, including its religious traditions such as the feasts of Our Lady of Fátima and of St John. The square is home to restaurants, delicatessens and grocery stores, as well as taverns where you can sample the Portuguese fish cakes bolinhos de bacalhau. The statue of poet Fernando Pessoa and the parish centred on the Église Sainte-Croix/Heilig-Kruiskerk (Church of the Holy Cross) hold a special place in the life of the Portuguese community, who gather to exchange news and gossip from families back home. Flagey is also synonymous with the former headquarters of the Belgian National Institute of Radio Broadcasting (INR/NIR). Designed by architect Joseph Diongre in 1935 and nicknamed the paquebot (‘ocean liner’), it is one of the great cultural centres of the Brussels-Capital Region, while its legendary Studio 4 concert hall is popular with many music fans. In addition, the square hosts a centuries-old market, where regulars and visitors meet and mingle.
In cooperation with E-Guides.
Sat. & Sun. at 10:00 and 14:00 (in French) (duration: 2 hours).
Starting point: at the entrance to the Abbaye de la Cambre/Abdij Ter Kameren, Square de la Croix-Rouge/Rode-Kruissquare, Ixelles/Elsene
Advance booking required. Up to 20 people per tour.