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Authentic Belgian Souvenirs: Top 10 to Buy in Belgium

March 24
7 min read
Enchanting view in Brussels, Belgium, with ornate medieval architecture and bustling activity, capturing the essence of Belgian heritage and culture.; authentic Belgian souvenirs
Table of Contents

    The first thing that probably comes to mind when considering Belgian souvenirs is chocolate. Yes, you’re right and that is most certainly on my list, but there are more options to bring home instead of or in addition to chocolate. However, with so many chocolate shops and souvenir shops pushing chocolate and the tourist knickknacks, it can be a little challenging to find true authentic Belgian souvenirs. I like to buy local art and handmade gifts from local artisans, and struggled with my research when planning my visit to Belgium. This article contains my list of authentic Belgian souvenirs to buy during your visit to Belgium, so you don’t have to spend lots of time with research and can be confident that you’re bringing home a true piece of Belgium.


    First up on the list is chocolate. We are all thinking about it and probably buying it. There’s no denying that Belgium is known for its chocolate and has many brands competing with the famous Swiss chocolatiers. Even as someone who doesn’t really enjoy chocolate, I have to admit that I fell in love with Belgian chocolate (especially Adelita’s). If you ask a local or anyone who has tried Belgian chocolate, they all have their own favorite type and brands. My recommendation, try a sample from the ones you’re most curious about before deciding on your purchase. With chocolate shops EVERYWHERE, you will easily be able to purchase Belgian chocolate to bring home.


    Dating back to the 16th century when the country was still known as “Flanders,” Belgium has been known for its variation of bobby pin lace which was handmade for royalty. Today the lace work is more rare and not as vastly produced as in the past. Therefore, these items are considered of high cultural preservation heritage value, and a little more expensive to purchase. While the product can be purchased in Brussels, if you have the possibility to visit Bruges, which is where the roots of the trade are, I highly recommend buying from the source.


    Similar to chocolate, Belgium is known for its beer and it is everywhere. There are over 100 breweries producing over 700 types of beer. Even if you’re not a fan of beer, you’re sure to find a brand and type amongst all the Belgian beer choices. As with my chocolate story, I had never been a fan of beer until my last day in Brussels when I stumbled upon a beer brand infused with whiskey. I will give the same recommendation with chocolate, sample before making your choice. However, it is important to note that Belgium is famous for ‘Trappist’ beers, which are brewed by monks within fourteen monasteries. These beers can only be purchased in Belgium and are in limited supply.

    Enchanting view in Gent, Belgium, with ornate medieval architecture and bustling activity, capturing the essence of Belgian heritage and culture; authentic Belgian souvenirs


    Belgium doesn’t get the recognition in crystal work that it deserves. The country’s lead producer, Cristallerie du Val Saint Lambert, has been creating masterpieces for homes and businesses since the 19th century. The brand focuses on a blend of traditional and modern designs and creations, earning its prestigious status. Similar to the lace, this souvenir is more on the price side and involves a quick trip to the source city of Seraing. Be sure to call ahead and ensure that their store is open, and to ask about any shipping questions you might have.

    Speculoos Biscuits

    A crunchy biscuit made with brown sugar and spices, dating back to the 1650s. It was originally made on the eve of Sinterklaas, well-behaved children would be given generous helpings of them as gifts and treats. However, today they’re served year-round and sometimes given on airlines, or with tea and coffee. These biscuits are easy to find at almost any grocery store and make a light and easy souvenir to bring home for friends, family, and colleagues.


    An under-the-radar souvenir is Belgian cheese. Belgium has a plethora of farming communities with vast numbers of cows and sheep, which has led to the production of Belgian cheeses. With options from sharp cheddars to melting, gooey cheeses, Belgian cheese does not disappoint. Be sure to purchase a vacuum-sealed block if you’re packing cheese to bring home in your carry-on.


    Antwerp has been recognized as a diamond capital of the world, promising beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces to celebrate any special occasion. In Antwerp’s jewelry shops, you can choose from a selection of beautiful pre-designed pieces or work with a jeweler on a personal piece. While this is an expensive souvenir, it is an investment in a piece that will last a lifetime and is perfect for anyone considering proposing soon.


    Belgium is one of the biggest producers of comic books and has the largest number of comic book artists in Europe. A few of the world’s most famous comics originated in Belgium including “The Adventures of Tintin,” “The Smurfs,” and “The Adventures of Astérix.” These proud parts of Belgian culture are displayed around Brussels in the design of colorful murals, representing scenes from beloved childhood comics. Many stores sell these famous well-known comics of Belgian culture, but a few smaller stores have less-known, local artists getting their start. Either purchase makes an extremely cool memento, even for those who aren’t comic book fans.

    Enchanting view in Brussels, Belgium, with ornate medieval architecture and bustling activity, capturing the essence of Belgian heritage and culture; authentic Belgian souvenirs


    Starting in the mid-1900s, Belgium became one of the most prominent glass producers in the world making glassware one of the country’s most high-quality products. Within the country, you will find glasses and beer steins in all shapes, sizes, colors, and with different glass thicknesses. If you’re considering replacing a glassware set, consider purchasing from one of Belgium’s many shops or visiting a local artisan’s shop for unique creations.


    Belgium is known for being the home of many famous artists over the centuries, including René Magritte, which is represented in the many art galleries strewn throughout the country. Today many shops sell replicas of the famous pieces or pieces from locals who are looking to make a name for themselves. Sometimes, in the warmer months, you can catch painters at work along canals and parks making their next creations and selling their work. Whether it’s Flemish or Belgian work, a piece of art brings home a part of Belgium’s soul.

    The rich cultural tapestry of Belgium unfolds through a myriad of authentic souvenirs, each telling a unique story of the country’s heritage. From the velvety allure of Belgian chocolate, the diverse brews of its over 700 types of beer, to the delicate artistry of lace dating back to the 16th century, the options are as varied as Belgium’s landscapes. Delve into the world of crystal craftsmanship from Seraing, savor the historical delight of Speculoos biscuits, or pack a piece of Belgium’s cheesy goodness. For a lasting symbol of love, Antwerp’s diamonds shine bright, while the vibrant world of Belgian comics and the intricate glassware creations add a touch of artistic flair. As you navigate through the charming streets and picturesque scenes of Belgium, bring home more than just memories – carry with you these authentic Belgian souvenirs, each a testament to the country’s unique character and craftsmanship.

    Planning a visit to Belgium? Visit my complete travel guide!

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