A day of surprises awaits young and old alike at the Coudenberg, Charles V’s palace in Brussels for 2018’s Family Day. Guided tours, 16th century cuisine, dancing, games and themed workshops. From 10 am to 6 pm, visitors will have the chance to re-enact the Renaissance era, wear the outfit of a crossbowman, a lady of the Court or a knight! A wonderful chance to go back in time and learn with the family or with friends.
Cooking and tasting
Being a festival of eras gone by, and being such an era characterised by the grand feasts and delightful delicacies, it is fitting that this festival offer all the culinary wonders of the Renaissance. On offer there is a
Cooking workshop: where visitors will be invited to get their hands doughy and make delicious recipes come from the past and straight into the future on your plate.
Period buffet: because a trip to the Renaissance can’t be complete without slinging some mead, feasting on pork and siting toasting a toast so hard that you lose half your drink. There will be a team of chefs cooking a selection of savory and sweet dishes to treat you and give you a needed boost should you continue your historic quest through town.
Zythology workshop: Fancy word, but just means someone who is a student and connoisseur of beer…A student of beer? you won’t find many university courses on this subject, but what better way to learn that have a pint in hand whilst sampling the different compositions, types and tastes of those savory suds.
Learning and discovery
Of course, a historic occasion like this isn’t just about feasting, there are activities to be done, activities that highlight other aspects of Renaissance life. It’s learning, but without having to sit down and read a giant text book…
Crossbow shooting: if you’re bold (and old enough), members of The Grand Serment Royal et de Saint Georges des Arbalétriers de Bruxelles will direct you in the use of one of the Renaissance’s most dangerous weapons: the crossbow. There is also a harmless version for younger visitors.
Interactive musical discovery: basements of Brussels comes back to life through the melodies, sounds, instruments and dances of the time of Charles V!
Meet the characters of the Ommegang procession | photoshoot: Crossbowmen, halberdiers, ladies and gentlemen of the Court will welcome the whole family, and this encounter with another time will be immortalised. Replicas of period costumes and accessories will be provided.
Guided tours of the “Giants!” exhibition: This exhibition displays all the facets of these characters, biblical and legendary heroes, who are so much more imposing than mere mortals. Tours start on the hour in French and on the half-hour in Dutch.
WAOUW treasure chests: each of these chests leads you to uncover the history of Charles V’s palace, if you can solve the challenge.
Underground treasure hunt: The search for the treasure of the Golden Fleece
Now, all this history may be fun, but allow us to blur the lines a bit with fact and fiction as you are taken down this mysterious treasure hunt!
Little Charles V needs your help! He has forgotten the password to his treasure chest, which contains his Order of the Golden Fleece collar. Charles is looking for brave princesses and knights to help him decode the password. Are you daring enough to follow him on a quest among the ruins of the Coudenberg Palace? There’s a nice reward, too. Each child will receive a backpack containing supplies for the tasks (a treasure map, a disguise, a puzzle, a torch, etc.). Each task provides a clue to the password that will lead them to the treasure (the famous Golden Fleece collar). The children will receive a small gift at the end of the game.