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4 ways to enjoy the Nocturnes in April

Mathilde Oechsner

Every Thursday evening between 5 and 10 pm, six Brussels museums open their doors to you. You can find the full programme here.

Here are four ways to enjoy the three Nocturnes in April. We hope that these few points of the programme will help you to create your own personalised programme!

Contemporary art, sport, poetry… Why choose when you can do all three?

Be prepared to be surprised, museums are often where you least expect them! At MIMA, come in sportswear to learn some boxing, and of course meet the local heroes” who have inspired the artists in the exhibition. Those who appreciate poetry will find it in a different form every Thursday: erotic poems at the MEM, engaged poems read by the Iranian artist and activist Maryam Kamyab at Géopolis or poems by Maurice Carême sung in the privacy of his home. Of course, one expects to find artworks in museums, but are you ready to take brushes and colours and recreate Alexandre Obolensky’s studio at the Fonderie? Or enter the artistic world of Mehdi-Georges Lahlou and Candice Breitz at the Centrale for contemporary art? Don’t worry, exceptional guides will show you the way.

Immersion in History and Culture

The Nocturnes are the perfect opportunity to experience something new. Museums not only offer you the opportunity to visit their collections and exhibitions, but also to immerse yourself in history, as at the Wellington Museum, where guides await you in historical clothing. La Monnaie/​De Munt, a surprisingly modern historical site, brings back small and large anecdotes during a guided tour through its rooms, corridors and staircases. The Jewish Museum of Belgium invites you to discover Jewish cultures in a workshop where all questions are allowed and to meet survivors of the Shoah. A unique opportunity to understand the importance of bearing witness, even today.

Art Nouveau treasures unveiled

The Nocturnes joins the celebration of Brussels Art Nouveau 2023. Each week, an exceptional house, a temporary exhibition or Art Nouveau collections can be discovered. Follow this red thread in the programme! On 13 April, you can stroll through the finely decorated interiors of the Autrique House to music. On 20 April, the Wittockiana opens its collection of Art Nouveau documents especially for the occasion.

And on 27 April in the Maison du Roi/​Broodhuis, you can discover how artists were inspired by nature through exceptional pieces from the collections of the Brussels City Museum, some of which are being exhibited for the first time. 

Do you have an Art Nouveau Pass? Don’t buy a Nocturnes’ ticket! You can use your pass to visit the Autrique House and the Maison du Roi/​Broodhuis. The visit to the Wittockiana is free for everyone. Convenient, isn’t it?

Would you rather be outside?

At the time of writing, we can’t predict the weather, but spring is here and it’s certainly going to provide us with some lovely evenings. Take advantage of the longer days to be outside and get some fresh air! Each Nocturne has its own special area. This allows you to combine several visits, and also to participate in an extra-mural activity.

For the opening of the exhibition on 13 April, go to the canal, in the municipalities of Anderlecht and Molenbeek. There will be walks and bike rides that evening: on the theme of water between the Sewer Museum and La Fonderie, from the MIMA to meet the museums open that evening, and from the Memorial to the Jewish Martyrs to learn more about the history of the Resistance and the Shoah. The following Thursday, the museums are located in the centre of the capital, but greenery lovers will head to Woluwe to the Paul Moens medicinal plant garden to learn all about edible plants: how to recognise them, but also how to cook them with a practical workshop. 

On 27 April, most of the participating museums are located near the Grand-Place, an opportunity to discover the links between lace and chocolate, or to stroll to the well-known or lesser-known tunes of Jacques Brel. 

To consult the detailed programme, timetables, practical information and of course to book your tickets, go to

Budget tip: if you want to enjoy the Nocturnes in a small group, buy a Nocturnes Pass ! This allows you to buy 4 tickets for the price of 3. The Nocturnes Pass is not nominative, so you can divide the tickets between several people.