What is Brussels best known for? The belgian capital is very famous for being home to the iconic Atomium, many European Union institutions and, of course, the Manneken Pis, the legendary fountain of a boy peeing! But it’s not the only public sculpture of someone that urinates!
Let’s see all of the pissing statues of Brussels:
1. Manneken Pis
First things first: Not only is it tiny, but it’s behind a tall fence, in the corner of 2 streets. There’s little chance you would even notice it’s there, unless you were looking for it! Or unless you were curious to see what all these people are staring at and taking photos of in front of that fence all day!
It was put in its place in 1619. Apparently there was another statue of a boy peeing since the 14th century. There are a few legends about the story behind it.
Yet another reason to visit the Manneken Pis is its wardrobe, as it changes outfits from time to time, based on the occasion that takes place! A lot of its suits are displayed in the Museum of the City of Brussels. You can even offer an outfit for the Manneken as a gift, by sending a demand to the College of Mayor and Aldermen! How cool is that?!
The famous statue is located at the junction of Rue de l’Étuve/ Stoofstraat and Rue du Chêne/ Eikstraat. Take the left lane next to the Brussels Town Hall from the Grande Place and walk a few hundred metres southwest via Rue Charles Buls/ Karel Bulsstraat.
2. Jeanneke Pis
The female counterpart of the Manneken Pis was erected a few centuries afterwards, in 1987. It’s true that the peeing girl is not nearly as famous as the boy and a lot of travellers are surprised when they find out that there is a female statue of the same theme! However, she has her own website, Facebook page, YouTube video and email address!
She’s tiny and behind iron bars, too. She, also, aims to raise awareness for cancer research. Visitors may toss a coin and make a wish. These coins are donated to research for cures against cancer.
It is located on the east side of the Impasse de la Fidélité/ Getrouwheidsgang, a dead end (!) off the Rue des Bouchers/ Beenhouwersstraat.
3. Het Zinneke
Very often (yet incorrectly) referred to as the Zinneke Pis, this dog peeing in the street completes the Peeing Trilogy of Brussels! It was erected in 1998. Located even further away than the other two, this sculpture is the least known of the three. Mark, the dog which modelled for the creation of this sculpture, is said to still live in the neighbourhood, so keep an eye for him if you’re around!
One difference between the Zinneke and the boy and the girl is that this one actually pisses air and it’s not part of a fountain. One thing they all have in common though is that they haven’t been treated well and they’ve been through theft, vandalism and a car crash among other things!
Rue des Chartreux 35 & rue du Vieux-Marché