Leuven Cultural Walking Tour, Leuven (Self Guided)

Leuven has some wonderful cultural attractions to offer, and is definitely most famous to beer lovers as the beer capital of Belgium or perhaps even the whole world. There is a large number of cultural buildings in this city and each attraction has its own special setup and outstanding collections on display. Take this walking tour to explore the best exhibitions in Leuven.
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Leuven Cultural Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Leuven Cultural Walking Tour
Guide Location: Belgium » Leuven (See other walking tours in Leuven)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 9
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.7 km
Author: karenl

1) STUK (must see)

Located in the midst of various university buildings, the STUK centre is the old university hall and this is clearly displayed through big metal letters along the street. Designed by architects Riedijk and Rotterdam, the building is constructed around a large patio on which different chambers can be seen: a cinema, a nice café, auditoriums, offices and an art factory. On these grounds, great artists, tourists and passers-by meet and a new world can be found behind each door. STUK is now a house with many inviting rooms and it offers an amazing selection of plays throughout the year.

2) Spoelberchmuseum

Bequeathed to the university in 1907, the museum shows works from the life of Spoelberch and there are lots of different pieces that can be seen in the collection. Dating from the 16th to the 19th century, this small museum also displays silverware, chinaware and a selection of paintings. The art collection contains the ancestral portrait gallery and one of the highlights of the museum is the large amount of antique furniture on display.

The museum is open to visitors every second Saturday of the month between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., except on public holidays. Groups must first make an appointment with a guide of the K.U. Leuven.
Catholic University

3) Catholic University

The Catholic University of Leuven was the largest, oldest and most prominent university in Belgium. The university was founded in 1425 as the University of Leuven by John IV, Duke of Brabant and approved by a Papal bull by Pope Martin V. During France's occupation of Belgium in the French Revolutionary Wars, the university closed by a decree of the French Republic. After Belgium was annexed by the United Kingdom of the Netherlands, a State University of Louvain was founded in 1816, lasting until 1835. In 1834, a few years after Belgium gained its independence, the Catholic University of Leuven was refounded, taking this new name, and it is identified with the Old University.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
Vander Kelen-Mertens Museum

4) Vander Kelen-Mertens Museum

The Museum is an old 19th century mansion hosting great collections of artifacts from ancient archaeological periods, and gives an amazing insight into the history of Leuven. This small museum is divided into three main sections. The first section houses different paintings that were created at different eras and in the second section, sculptures can be found. Among the items showcased in the second section is the 12th century Madonna Sedes Sapientiae. In the third room you can see artifacts such as old coins and golden pieces that are exhibited along with old glass paintings and porcelain.
Museum M

5) Museum M (must see)

Established in 2009, the “M” Museum is essentially the history of the city museum. The beautiful building, located in the centre of the city, is a real eye-catcher. Designed by the architect Beel, the complex integrates existing historical buildings with contemporary architecture. It houses a brilliant collection of documents, artifacts, costumes and paintings that are presented to local people and visitors. Here you can find an original collection of Gothic sculptures and 19th-century paintings by various artists. From the roof of the museum, you have a splendid view of the city.

6) Kinepolis

This venue is one of the best places to head if you are looking for a relaxing evening out in the heart of the city. This movie theatre has 7 screens, all of which are beautifully decorated and have modern facilities. All movies are presented in their original language, subtitled in Dutch and mostly French as well. Only cartoons are shown in Dutch for the children, but can be also shown in the original language; so check out which one you want before buying your ticket. There is sure to be something to suit you at this nice-looking movie theatre.

7) Tweebronnen

Originally built between 1936 and 1942, the building of the library was designed by the well-known Belgian architect Henry van de Velde and it is the building of the former Technical School. In 1990 the school was protected as a cultural and historical building. Between 1994 and 2000 the construction was substituted by a public library and municipal archive office. The old playground of the school is now a municipal meeting place.
National scouts museum

8) National scouts museum

Inaugurated in 1982, the museum is consecrated to the history of scouts in the town, from the first few clubs that were started, to a movement that had a group in almost every community. The small museum displays interesting exhibitions of the history of the scouting movement in the country and contains old uniforms, badges, flags, artifacts and pictures.
Stella Artois Brewery

9) Stella Artois Brewery

Situated in the centre of Leuven university, the brewery offers a variety of tours. The roots of this factory go back to 1366, when brewery Den Horen started. Six centuries of brewing tradition and the very latest technology guarantee a tasty and full-flavoured quality beer, Stella Artois. During your tour to the brewery, you’ll explore all the mysteries of the brewing process. After this visit, you are always welcome to see the brewery shop, where you will be able to find more information on the products.

Walking Tours in Leuven, Belgium

Create Your Own Walk in Leuven

Create Your Own Walk in Leuven

Creating your own self-guided walk in Leuven is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Nightlife Self - Guided Tour

Nightlife Self - Guided Tour

Leuven is the hub of student nightlife in the town, with lots of bars, cafes and nightclubs. At Leuven's cocktail lounges you can meet the trendiest people, relax over wonderful cocktails and see amazing live jazz and rock performances. Take this walking tour to explore the most famous bars that this city has to offer.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.6 km
Leuven Religious Buildings Tour

Leuven Religious Buildings Tour

Leuven has a great religious heritage and there are many magnificent abbey buildings and interesting churches that are worth a visit. This self-guided tour will take you through some of the most historical religious buildings in the city.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 km
Famous Architecture Walk

Famous Architecture Walk

For tourists looking to find the most remarkable Medieval buildings in the world, they should just visit Leuven. The town is the seat of the most impressive architecture in all of Belgium, the imposing University Library and the splendid Town Hall, which is home to numerous early Flemish figures. Take this tour and admire the beauty of Leuven architecture.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.9 km
City Orientation Walk

City Orientation Walk

Leuven can proudly boast a number of great landmarks that offer extraordinary scope for sightseeing. The city of Leuven is marked by two beautiful squares, the Ladeuzeplein, basically the most famous attraction and the Fochplein, where the magnificent Fonske can be found. This orientation walk is the best opportunity to discover Leuven's most interesting attractions.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 km
Leuven Daily Life Tour

Leuven Daily Life Tour

In terms of culture, entertainment and beautiful places to visit, Leuven has a wide range of possibilities. From its culinary walks to the dazzling green parks, from the student atmosphere in the main squares to the magnificence of the theaters, Leuven has it all. Take this wonderful tour to discover all the exciting places Leuven has to offer.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.2 km

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Leuven for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Leuven has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Taking Care of Your Feet

To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Leuven, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device

Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.