On a lazy sunday in october the boyfriend and I found it was time to start our little project and take our first dip into the culture of our wee little country. We decided to start small and go to a museum I once visited with my music class back when I played the piano: the Musical Instruments Museum in Brussels.
This is definitely a museum of the "looking at old stuff" variety, but if your interest in music goes a bit further than singing along to Beyonce in your bathroom, I highly recommend visiting. The building is almost worth a visit for its architecture alone and the collection is comprehensive to say the least. It houses around 7000 Belgian, European and exotic instruments, both of the classic and folk variety.
You can learn about the history and sound of the instruments if you want, but just strolling around and admiring the pieces is fine as well.
If you consider visiting, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Rent an audio guide. We were were stubborn enough not to, but realized our mistake when we saw some people randomly dancing: of course the guide provides audio samples of the instruments.
- Plan some other activities in the neighbourhood. This is not a museum you can spend an entire day at, but there are several others just around the corner so do take advantage of that.
- Bring a bottle of water. Seriously, it's hot inside and you'll regret it if you don't.
- Spend too much time on photos. It's dark in there so they'll be of very poor quality anyway (case in point: this post). A couple to catch the atmosphere is fine, but taking a photo of every single thing you see is a bit pointless.
- Travel by car. There is a parking lot nearby, but it was an absolute nightmare to get there. Learn from our mistakes, public transportation is your friend here.
We took a few pictures, but as I said, the quality is less than stellar. They still reflect the atmosphere pretty well though, so I'll wrap it up with those.
Musical Instruments Museum (Muziekinstrumentenmuseum) - Hofbergstraat 2, 1000 Brussel