On our first day in the capital city of Belgium, Brussels, we arrived at 10 am by train, and made our way to the hotel, where we checked in and got a one and a half hour break. Our group went to a fish and chips restaurant and it was delicious. The owner was also very friendly and could even speak a little German. The interesting part was that when we paid with cash, we had to had to put it into a machine. After we had lunch, we went  to the permanent representation of Austria. Ms Kühnel told us about this institution and what they do. We also had a parliament simulation, where we represented EU countries. Back in the hotel we got to our rooms, which also had a community kitchen and a hangout place. (Yomna, 6e)

15th of November started with a tour at Grote Markt where we met a tour guide who told us the meanings behind those historical buildings we saw there. Our next stop was the famous statue Manneken Pis, many of us where surprised to see how small the statue actually is in real life because it looks much bigger in the pictures we saw before. We continued visiting other sites and learned a lot about the history of Brussels. When the tour ended, we had some time for ourselves to discover more places on our own before we had to go to the European Council where Natasha Ansari Rüling welcomed us. We got the chance to see how the people in the building work and what affection the building has for the European Union. In general we learned many new things we didn’t know before and made great experiences as a class. (Ayse & Amila, 6e)

On our third day, we went to see the European Parliament and the European Commission. We used the metro to get to our destination and it isn’t like the ones in Vienna; you have to have a metro card and you put money on there, every time you want to use the metro you have to go through a terminal with your card. From 11:30 to 13:00 we listened to a presentation about the parliament and its history and functions, we also asked a couple of questions about it. Later Evelyn Regner joined us in the discussion room. Evelyn Regner is a representative of the SPÖ, and we had the opportunity to ask her questions directly about political ongoings. At the end everyone got a goodbye gift. From 15:00 to 17:00 we went to visit the European Commission and one of the employees also held a speech about his job and the Commission. (Yusuf, 6e)

Thursday, we made a day trip to Bruges. Bruges is the capital and largest city of the province of West Flanders in the Flemish Region of Belgium. A tour guide showed us the city and told us some interesting things about Bruges: The Bruges region was already populated in Roman times, but the city’s name appeared for the first time in the 9th century, probably derived from the Old Germanic word ”brugj“, which means ”mooring“. Bruges has always had a special bond with the sea. After all, water played a crucial role in the city’s foundation. It was the place where several streams merged into a single river, which flowed north into the coastal plain. This river was linked to the North Sea through a series of ”tidal channels“, guaranteeing the city’s future welfare and prosperity. After that we had some free time, to explore the city by ourselves, and then we went to ”Choco Story“. It´s a museum that shows the history of chocolate. We tasted different types of chocolate, learned how chocolate is made and came to Europe and at the end a cook made Pralinés in front of us, which we also ate. (Mateo, Magdan, Adam & Luka)

Friday was our last day in Brussels. We went to the Atomium. We used an elevator to go to the top of this special building which looks like an iron  atom and we were able to see a beautiful view of Brussels. At the Atomium we were able to take our time and look around. We got to learn about the history of the Atomium and we also got see a few cool light shows. We were able to go through it multiple times. After visiting the Atomium we used the train to come back to Vienna. (Divine, 6e)