Leuven is just 25 kilometers from Brussels, but offers travelers a different experience than the Belgium capital city. Leuven is best known as a university town with many breweries, and also happens to be the capital of the Flemish Brabant Province. The ornate town hall dates back to the 15th century, with many other interesting historic architectural sights around town.
Brussels is a relatively small country, so it’s easy to get around, and Leuven makes a perfectly excellent place to stay in Belgium, given the excellent train system here. Many tourists choose to stay in Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent or Bruges, but should you choose Leuven, we’ve rounded up some of the best Leuven hotels, and areas to stay in Leuven.
We will cover off all types of Leuven accommodation options from Hostels to luxury Leuven hotels as well as how to decide where to stay in Leuven, the best Leuven hotels, best places in Leuven to visit, the best places to stay in Leuven, hotels near Leuven attractions, Leuven neighborhood guide and many more.
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Oude Markt is Leuven’s Old Square, and a central hub for social life in Leuven. This is the best place to stay in Leuven for foodies because it has the highest concentration of bars and restaurants in the area. If you are visiting Leuven in summer, terrace seating pops up everywhere for patrons to enjoy the warm weather. If you are wondering where to stay in Leuven for nightlife, Oude Markt is also referred to as the “longest bar in the world.” So, you’ll have no trouble rounding up a pint or two in Oude Markt. In warmer months, there are many festivals to enjoy as well.
Best places to stay in Oude Markt
Grote Markt is Leuven’s Old Square, and similar to Grand Place in Brussels, is surrounded by beautiful guild houses, some of which date back to the 14th century. Grote Markt is the hub of several fun events throughout the year, including a wonderful Christmas Market. In warmer months, there is the Flower Carpet, which transforms the entire square into a large carpet of flowers, as well as live music and food festivals throughout the summer.
Best places to stay in Grote Markt
Cheapest Backpacking Hostels in Grote Markt:
HI De Zandpoort Mechelen
For travelers in Leuven who prefer a more residential experience, Kessel-Lo is a great place to stay. The area is largely residential, with few tourists attractions in the area. The Kessel-Lo Provincial Domain a nature and recreation zone of the Brabant Province. If you are traveling to Leuven with kids, you will love the splash pool, playgrounds, ponds and sports facilities. There are also paddleboat and rowboat rentals, as well as a tavern and snack stand. Apartment rentals are a popular option for those who want to stay in Kessel-Lo.
Best places to stay in Kessel-Lo
The Leuven area of Heverlee is a great place to stay for families and outdoor lovers as it has a high concentration of parks and green space. It is technically a suburb of Leuven, and an excellent park is the Park Abbey. Heverlee Woods are a popular place for hiking and mountain biking, and the Arenberg Castle is also worth a visit.