This Basilica is very impressing, it is so big. It is called to be one of the biggest catholic churches in the world.
It was designed by A. Van Nuffel, and the construction works dated from 1925 till 1975.
It was erected to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the independence of Belgium.
The official name is the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, but almost everyone names it the Basilica of Koekelberg.
This is not one of my best pictures as it is made while I was driving in the busy Brussels traffic.
The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Brussels is visible from the center of Brussels. I’d seen it many times to the west down Leopold II Tunnel at the north end of the main shopping street (Nieuwstraat) as I continued on my way to Gare du Noord. I decided to take a closer look one day, but it certainly took longer than I expected to get there. It’s a straight walk, but the 100 year old church is the fifth largest in the world which is why it’s visible from so far away. There aren’t any building to obstruct the view either as the church looks out over the grassy Parc Elisabeth (Elizabeth Park). Worth the trip, but it’s probably smarter to take a tram or bus to get there.
The National Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Koekelberg is the largest Art Deco building in the world and the fifth largest church in the world.
Belgian King Leopold II was very passionate about the urban rejuvenation and expansion of his capital in Brussels and the development of the Koekelberg plateau was part of his grand plans. Impressed with the Sacre-Coeur of Paris he decided to build a great religous building at the end of the grand Boulevard Leopold II at the Elisabeth park. In October 1905 the first stone of the basilica was laid by the King. Due to interuptions caused by 2 world wars the building was not completed and consecrated until 1951 and by then a more challenging financial position had caused the plans to be substantially altered and so we have a building which although impressive in it's scale is not what could be called charming or beautiful.
The basilica is impressive from the outside and well worth a visit just for this, but the inside is a bit of a disappointment after the grand exterior. It's a bit plain and utilitarian and there isn't any of the charm and intimacy that often goes with the interior of churches of all sizes. Some of the stained glass windows are attractive however.
The Basilica is open from 8am to 6pm daily.
The Koekelberg National Basilica is the 5th largest church in the world and is visible in this view from the top floor of the Museum of Fine Arts of Belgium. I could not visit it due to my short stay in Brussels and hope to see it on my next visit!!!
Somehow churches always interest me and being the 5th largest in the World and having such importance, it was a definite must see in Brussels.
It is not very far from the centre and it was part of our tour. the architecture was massive, incredible but at the moment undergoing extensive refurbishment so for the time being, one can only admire the architecture as from the inside it is presently bare, just scaffolding.
This is known as the Basilica of the Sacred Heart also known as Koekelberg Basilica. It is 89 meters high and 167 meters long and it was built for the 75th anniversary of Belgian Independence. It is reletavely new, first stone was laid by King Leopold II in 1905 and completed by the end of 1971.
In 1997 the dome of the Koekelberg Basilica was opened for visitors. A elevator and many stairs leads you to the top from where one has one of the best views over Brussel that are available. The centre with the graceful cityhall tower, as well as the Automium, are all in your view.
Somehow the Koekelberg has attracting powers, because at all my Brussels visits I pass this location, that is a real landmark just being elevated over its surroundings.
The Koekelberg Basilica, official name Basiliek van het Heilig-Hart van Brussel is the best known church building of Brussels.
You can enjoy a panoramic view onto Brussels from the tower; visiting hours:
Summer 9AM - 5.15PM
Winter: 9AM -4.15PM
Already from a large distance and from many positions through Brussels hemisphere, one can see the enormous dome of the Basilica of Koekelberg. The actual name is Basilica of the Sacred Heart, but situated in the neighbourhood "Koekelberg" the people simply started to call it "Basilica of Koekelberg". The church was built as a remembrance to the 75th anniversary of Belgium's independance and in 1905 one started the construction of this largest Art Deco building in the world. Because of the First World War the construction was delayed considerably and only in the 1960'ies it was finished and became the National Basilica of Belgium as well as one of the most remarkable buildings in Brussel.
When the Basilica of Koekelberg was built, Art Deco became quite popular around the world. Initially the church should have been constructed in Late Gothic styles, but in the 1930-ies one decided to go for the Art Deco architecture that one can see now. Inside a lot of marble is used, as well as colourful glass in lead windows. Besides that also the fine organs and transcept within the church are worth your attention.
The Basilica of the Sacred Heart (situated in the Suburb of Koekelberg) is labeled "the national Basilica of Belgium". It was built to remember the 75th anniversary of the Belgian independence.
In 1905 king Leopold II laid the first stone. According to the plans of architect LANGEROCK it was to become a gigantic neo-gothic church. The initial plans were stopped at the beginning of World War I. Only in 1919 the construction would continue. However, by then the developers had changed their plans and architect. A new architect, called VAN NUFFEL, was asked to construct a modern prayerhouse. To the people of Brussels and Belgium it seemed that the Basilica would never be finished. Moreover, the construction of the church depended entirely on donations made by believers and these donations did not always yield the expected funds. The church was eventually finished in the late 1960's with the construction of a dome and dedicated to the war victories of 1918 and 1944.
The interior decoration is in 1930's Art Deco style with use of marble. Since March 1997 visitors can climb into the dome of the Basilica from where one can have a beautiful panorama over Brussels and its surrounding area.
Basiliekvoorplein / Parvis de la Basilique 1 in Koekelberg
Nearest metro station: Simonis.
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