Palais Coudenberg

Price guide: Budget

Place des Palais 7, Brussels, 1000

Price guide: Budget

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By Emma Thomson, your Brussels expert

I write for Bradt Travel Guides, .... Read more
#11 of 20
expert-rated things to do in Brussels
Expert overall rating:4.4 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Couples, Culture vultures, Families with teenagers, Mature travellers, Seasoned travellers, Design and architecture, History

Expert review of Palais Coudenberg

Archeological site beneath the Royal Palace.

Fascinating archeological site exploring the remains of the enormous medieval Coudenberg Palace that stood on Place Royale from the 11th to the late-18th centuries and was the seat of residence to Europe’s ruling powers for over six centuries, including Emperor Charles V. Following under-lit brick walkways, explore kitchens and larders and the vast vaulted ceiling of the Aula Magna — the lavish banquet hall built by Philip the Good in the 14th century, and which hosted meetings held by the knights of the Order of the Golden Fleece and where Emperor Charles V abdicated in 1555.

Above ground, the Royal Palace, which is only used for meetings nowadays, is unfortunately only open for a limited time in summer. However, you can visit the Musée BELvue (Place des Palais 7, 1020; which relates the history of Belgium and its monarchs via a super collection of photographs, historical documents, film clips, press cuttings and uniforms donated by the Royal Family.

Price advice: 

Adults 6 euros, Seniors & groups >15 persons 5 euros, 18-25 / unemployed / disabled 4 euros, under 18s free; free entry with Brussels Card — see Brussels insider tips. Audio guide costs 2.50 euros.

Expert tips: 
It’s definitely worth joining a guided tour; they have plenty of stories to tell to bring the site to life.
You can buy a combined ticked for 10 euros, which grants you access to Palais Coudenberg and the BELvue Museum.

More information on Palais Coudenberg:

Price guide:
Archaeological site, Castle / palace, Museum
Place des Palais 7, Brussels, 1000
+32 70 22 04 92
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Tues—Fri 9:30am—5pm (July & August 10am-6pm), Sat—Sun 10am—6pm; closed 1 January, 21 July and 31 December. Closes at 2pm on 24 and 31 December.

Have you been to Palais Coudenberg? Would you recommended it?