Facts about Belgium
Belgium has two major ethnic groups. The northern part of the country is known as Flanders, is predominantly Dutch-speaking, and the inhabitants are called Flemings. The southern part is known as Wallonia where French is the dominant language. The country borders the Netherlands, Germany, Luxembourg and France. The western coastal plain is flat landscape and is known for good bathing beaches. In the eastern part is, among other things, the Ardennes, a mountain area which is densely overgrown with forest.
What to see in Belgium?
Brussels is the capital and is the EU’s administrative headquarters. Brussels is centrally located in Belgium and with easy transport to the whole country. Some of the highlights of Brussels are on the UNESCO World Heritage List, the Grand Place with its beautifully decorated Baroque and Gothic houses is one of the most beautiful squares in Europe. In winter there is a beautiful Christmas market. Other famous sights in Brussels are the Royal Palace, Manneken Pis, the Cathedral built back in the 15th century.
Antwerp is Belgium’s second largest city and is known as the capital of the diamond industry. Antwerp is a city with many faces with its mix of modern and historic districts. The medieval district is known for its impressive 123-meter-high cathedral, the many cafés along the cobbled streets and the Rubenshuis, a museum dedicated to the Belgian painter.
Probably the most attractive city in Belgium is the adventurous medieval city of Bruges with a network of canals, cobbled streets and charming historic houses. Close to Bruges is the city of Ghent, which in the Middle Ages was one of the most powerful and richest cities in Europe.
For those interested in history and the many European conflicts, Waterloo, where Napoleon was defeated, and the battlefields of Flanders with their significance from the First World War are all worth a visit.
Questions and answers
The language of Belgium?
What language is spoken in Belgium?
Despite its small size, there are three official languages in Belgium: Dutch is spoken in Flanders, French is spoken in Wallonia and German is spoken in the eastern part of the country. Most inhabitants, especially in Flanders, speak English.
How many inhabitants does Belgium have?
The total population of Belgium is approximately 11,500,000
What is the capital of Belgium?
The capital and largest city of Belgium is Brussels
When did Belgium join the EU?
Belgium is a member of the EU, the country was acceded to on 1 January 1958
Is Belgium part of Schengen?
Yes, Belgium has been a member of the Schengen cooperation since 26 March 1995
Is Belgium a member of NATO?
Yes, Belgium has been a member of the NATO Alliance since 24 August 1949
What time is it in Belgium?
Belgium has a time zone of UTC +1. So no matter where you are in the country, the time is the same.
Can you drink tap water in Belgium?
There are generally no problems with drinking the water from the taps. Those who want to be on the safe side buy bottled water, it is not very expensive and it can be bought in kiosks everywhere.
When is the best time to travel to Belgium?
When is the best time to holiday in Belgium?
Belgium has a climate that is typical of most countries in northwestern Europe. The country’s climate is affected by the Atlantic Ocean, but Belgium’s small size means that there is very little variation in climate and temperature throughout the country. The winters are usually mild in Belgium and the summers are hot. Occasionally the temperature can reach 30˚C.
The busiest times in Belgium are July and August, this is also where the weather is best. April, May, September and October are good months to visit Belgium. Here are not so many tourists, accommodation as well as general prices are cheaper and the cities are less crowded. The winter in Belgium can be cold and humid.
Is it safe to travel in Belgium?
Belgium is generally safe even in the big cities. However, like most other countries, Belgium has problems with pickpockets in the big cities. Of course, these pickpockets know well where tourists are coming from and therefore you need to be careful – just as you need to be at home.
Family holiday with children in Belgium
If you need to take children on holiday to Belgium, here is a link to experiences for children and families.
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