Belgium

Belgium is a small, diverse country located in the heart of Western Europe. It is a founding member of the European Union, and is known for its high standard of living, robust economy, and multicultural population. It is home to two major language groups- French and Dutch- which shape its society, regional diversity, and rich cultural heritage. It is renowned for its chocolate, beer, and cuisine, as well as its beautiful architecture and quaint cobblestoned streets.

Tourism in Belgium: A Festive and Enchanting Experience

Belgium, a small country in Western Europe, may not be the first destination that comes to mind when planning a trip. However, this charming country has a lot to offer to tourists, especially during the festive season. With its rich history, vibrant culture, and picturesque landscapes, Belgium is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. As a Cultural Commentator and Travel Writer, I invite you to join me on a journey through this enchanting country and discover all that it has to offer.

Introducing the Festive Spirit of Belgium

The festive season in Belgium is truly magical. The streets are adorned with colorful lights and decorations, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The smell of waffles, chocolate, and mulled wine fills the air, adding to the festive ambiance. The locals are in high spirits, and there is a sense of communal joy and celebration. It is the perfect time to visit Belgium and experience its unique traditions and customs.

Spotlight on Unique Tourist Attractions

Belgium may be small, but it is packed with unique tourist attractions that are particularly popular during the festive season. One of the must-visit places is the Grand Place in Brussels, which transforms into a winter wonderland during this time of year. The iconic Christmas markets offer a variety of traditional Belgian treats and handcrafted gifts. Another must-visit attraction is the Bruges Christmas Market, where you can take a romantic horse-drawn carriage ride through the medieval city center while sipping on hot chocolate.

General Overview of Tourist Attractions

Aside from the festive season, Belgium has many other tourist attractions that are worth exploring. The country is known for its stunning architecture, with medieval castles, gothic cathedrals, and Art Nouveau buildings scattered throughout. The Belgian countryside is also a sight to behold, with picturesque villages, rolling hills, and lush forests. And of course, no trip to Belgium would be complete without indulging in its famous chocolate, waffles, and beer.

Important Places to Visit

When in Belgium, there are a few key tourist destinations that you should not miss. The capital city of Brussels is a must-visit, with its charming cobblestone streets, historic landmarks, and delicious cuisine. Bruges, often referred to as the “Venice of the North,” is another popular destination known for its romantic canals and medieval architecture. Other must-visit places include Ghent, Antwerp, and the Ardennes region.

Activities for Tourists

Belgium offers a variety of activities for tourists to enjoy. During the festive season, you can attend Christmas markets, ice-skating rinks, and holiday concerts. For outdoor enthusiasts, there are hiking and biking trails in the Ardennes region and water sports along the Belgian coast. You can also visit museums and art galleries to learn about the country’s rich history and culture.

Infrastructure and Transportation

Belgium has an efficient public transportation system, making it easy for tourists to get around. The country has an extensive network of trains, buses, trams, and metros that connect major cities and tourist destinations. You can purchase a travel card or individual tickets depending on your travel needs. It is recommended to plan your route beforehand to avoid any confusion or delays.

Travel Information for Foreign Visitors

If you are planning to visit Belgium during the festive season, here is some essential information that you should know.

Visa Requirements

Citizens of the European Union do not need a visa to enter Belgium. However, visitors from other countries may require a Schengen visa, which allows you to travel within the Schengen area for up to 90 days. You can apply for a Schengen visa at the Belgian embassy or consulate in your country. It is advisable to start the application process at least 3 months before your planned trip.

Health and Safety

Belgium is generally a safe country for tourists, but it is always recommended to take precautions. Make sure to have travel insurance that covers medical expenses in case of an emergency. It is also essential to stay hydrated and dress appropriately for the weather. As with any tourist destination, be aware of your surroundings and avoid walking alone at night.

Local Customs and Etiquette

Belgium has its own set of cultural norms and customs that may be different from what you are used to. For example, it is customary to greet people with a handshake or a kiss on the cheek, depending on the region. When dining out, it is polite to wait for everyone to be served before starting to eat. And when visiting someone’s home, it is customary to bring a small gift for the host.

Currency and Payment Methods

The official currency in Belgium is the Euro (EUR). Credit cards are widely accepted in major cities and tourist areas, but it is always a good idea to have some cash on hand for smaller purchases. ATMs are readily available throughout the country, and you can exchange currency at banks and exchange offices.

Festive Activities in Belgium

In addition to the traditional Christmas markets and holiday concerts, Belgium offers some unique activities for tourists to indulge in during the festive season.

Ice Sculpture Festival

Every year, Bruges hosts an Ice Sculpture Festival where artists from around the world create stunning ice sculptures based on a specific theme. It is a magical experience to walk through the frozen wonderland and admire the intricate sculptures.

Light Festival in Ghent

During the winter months, the city of Ghent is transformed into a magical light festival. The streets, buildings, and canals are illuminated with colorful light installations, creating a fairytale-like atmosphere.

Connect with Country Traditions

Belgium has many traditions associated with the festive season, such as decorating Christmas trees, exchanging gifts, and enjoying delicious holiday treats. Take part in these traditions to truly immerse yourself in the Belgian culture and create unforgettable memories.

Infrastructure and Transit During the Festive Season

With an influx of tourists during the festive season, it is essential to plan your transportation efficiently to avoid any delays or overcrowding.

Efficiency of Public Transportation

Belgium’s public transportation system is generally efficient, but it can get busier during the festive season. It is advisable to book your tickets in advance, especially if you are traveling between major cities. You can also opt for private transportation options such as taxis or car rentals for more flexibility.

Tips for Efficiently Traversing the Country

To make the most out of your trip to Belgium during the festive season, here are some tips for efficiently traversing the country:

  • Plan your itinerary in advance to avoid wasting time.
  • Book tickets for popular attractions and events beforehand.
  • Use online resources to check train and bus schedules.
  • Consider purchasing a travel card for unlimited travel on public transportation.
  • Be aware of peak travel times and try to avoid them if possible.

Accommodation Options in Belgium

Belgium offers a variety of accommodation options to suit different budgets and preferences.

Luxury Hotels

For those looking for a luxurious stay, Belgium has many five-star hotels with excellent amenities and services. These hotels are usually located in major cities and tourist destinations, offering convenient access to popular attractions.

Budget-Friendly Options

If you are traveling on a budget, there are plenty of affordable options such as hostels, guesthouses, and budget hotels. These are often located in city centers and offer basic amenities at a reasonable price.

Advantages of Different Accommodations

The type of accommodation you choose can also have advantages depending on the country events you plan to attend. For example, if you want to experience the Christmas markets in Brussels, staying in a hotel in the city center would be more convenient than staying outside the city.

Shopping and Souvenirs in Belgium

Belgium is known for its chocolate, beer, and lace, making it the perfect place to find unique souvenirs that embody the country’s culture.

Key Shopping Districts and Markets

Brussels, Antwerp, and Bruges are known for their shopping districts with a mix of high-end designer stores and local boutiques. The Christmas markets also offer a variety of handcrafted gifts and traditional Belgian treats that make for great souvenirs.

Tips for Finding Unique Souvenirs

To find unique souvenirs that truly represent Belgium’s culture, consider visiting smaller towns and villages where you can find handmade items and support local artisans. You can also look for specialty shops that sell traditional Belgian products such as chocolates, beers, and lace.

Technology and Connectivity in Belgium

Staying connected while traveling is essential, especially during the festive season when you may need to make reservations or navigate through crowded areas.

Availability of Wi-Fi and Data

Most hotels, restaurants, and cafes in Belgium offer free Wi-Fi for customers. You can also purchase a local SIM card with a data plan to stay connected while on the go.

Recommended Apps

Here are some recommended apps to make your trip to Belgium more convenient and enjoyable:

  • Google Maps – for navigation and finding public transportation routes.
  • Google Translate – for translating signs and menus.
  • TripAdvisor – for finding highly-rated restaurants, attractions, and accommodations.
  • Visit Belgium – the official tourism app for information on events, attractions, and travel tips.

Eco-Tourism and Outdoor Adventures in Belgium

Belgium is a small country, but it has a lot to offer for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

Eco-Friendly Travel Options

Belgium has many eco-friendly travel options, such as bike rentals and walking tours, that allow you to explore the country while minimizing your carbon footprint. You can also opt for eco-friendly accommodations that promote sustainable practices.

Outdoor Activities

The Ardennes region is perfect for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and kayaking. You can also visit national parks and nature reserves to admire the country’s diverse flora and fauna.

Local Festivals and Events

Aside from the major holiday events, there are also smaller local festivals and events taking place around the country during the festive season.

Winter Wonders in Brussels

Winter Wonders is a month-long festival in Brussels that includes a Christmas market, ice-skating rink, light shows, and a ferris wheel. It is a must-visit for anyone in Belgium during the festive season.

Christmas in Bruges

Bruges hosts several Christmas concerts and events throughout the month of December, making it a festive and lively city to visit during this time.

Practical Advice and Tips for Visiting Belgium

Here are some practical tips to keep in mind when planning your trip to Belgium:

  • Research the country’s customs and etiquette before your trip.
  • Budget for your trip accordingly, taking into account the higher prices during the festive season.
  • Be aware of pickpockets and keep your valuables safe.
  • Wear comfortable shoes as you will be doing a lot of walking.
  • Check the weather forecast and pack appropriate clothing.

A Comprehensive Tourist Guide to Belgium

To make the most out of your trip to Belgium, here is a comprehensive guide with all the essential information you need.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Belgium is from April to October when the weather is mild, and there are many outdoor events and festivals. However, if you want to experience the festive season, December is the ideal time to visit.

Country Events and Activities

Some of the not-to-be-missed country events and activities include:

  • Christmas markets in Brussels, Bruges, and Ghent.
  • The Ice Sculpture Festival in Bruges.
  • The Light Festival in Ghent.
  • The Winter Wonders festival in Brussels.

Schedule and Ticket Acquisition

It is recommended to plan your trip around the country events you want to attend and purchase tickets in advance if possible. You can find information about schedules and ticket acquisition on the official websites of the events or through the Visit Belgium app.

Attire for the Country Climate and Festive Occasions

Belgium’s climate is temperate, with mild summers and cool winters. It is advisable to dress in layers during the winter months, as temperatures can fluctuate throughout the day. For festive occasions, you can dress up in your holiday best or opt for a more casual look, depending on the event.

Local Customs and Practices

To show respect for the local customs and practices, here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind:

  • Do greet people with a handshake or a kiss on the cheek.
  • Do wait for everyone to be served before starting to eat.
  • Don’t be loud or disruptive in public places.
  • Don’t litter or damage any public property.

Language Assistance

While most Belgians speak English, it is always appreciated to learn a few common phrases in French or Dutch, depending on the region you are visiting. Here are some useful phrases:

  • Hello – Bonjour (French) / Hallo (Dutch)
  • Thank you – Merci (French) / Dank je (Dutch)
  • Excuse me – Excusez-moi (French) / Excuseer mij (Dutch)
  • Do you speak English? – Parlez-vous anglais? (French) / Spreekt u Engels? (Dutch)

Emergency Contact Numbers

In case of an emergency, here are some vital contact numbers to keep on hand:

  • Police – 101
  • Ambulance – 112
  • Fire Brigade – 100

In conclusion, Belgium is a charming and enchanting country that offers a unique and festive experience for tourists. From its vibrant cities to its picturesque countryside, there is something for everyone to enjoy. With this comprehensive guide, you are now ready to plan your trip to Belgium and make the most out of your visit. So pack your bags, immerse yourself in the festive spirit, and get ready to create unforgettable memories in this beautiful country

The Fascinating Country of Belgium: A Statistical Overview

Belgium, a small yet vibrant country in Western Europe, is known for its delicious chocolates, waffles, and beer. But beyond these tasty treats, there is much more to discover about this country. In this article, we will delve into the statistical data of Belgium and uncover some interesting facts about its population, economy, and culture.

Population and Demographics

Belgium has a population of approximately 11.5 million people, making it the 77th most populous country in the world. The majority of the population (around 60%) lives in urban areas, with the capital city of Brussels being the most densely populated city in the country.

The population of Belgium is quite diverse, with Flemish (Dutch-speaking) and Walloon (French-speaking) being the two main linguistic groups. According to the latest census data, around 60% of the population speaks Dutch, while 40% speaks French. German is also recognized as an official language in a small region of Belgium.

In terms of religion, Christianity is the predominant religion in Belgium, with Roman Catholicism being the largest denomination. However, there is also a significant percentage of the population who identify as non-religious or have other beliefs.

Economy and Industries

Belgium has a highly developed and open-market economy, ranking as the 19th largest economy in the world. Its strategic location at the crossroads of Western Europe has made it a major hub for international trade and commerce.

The country’s main industries include manufacturing, services, and agriculture. Belgium is known for its production of high-quality goods such as chocolate, beer, and diamonds. It is also a leading producer of chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

In recent years, Belgium has seen a rise in its tourism industry, with visitors drawn to its historical cities, picturesque countryside, and cultural attractions. The tourism sector contributes significantly to the country’s economy, generating over 10% of its GDP.

Culture and Society

Belgium has a rich cultural heritage, influenced by its location at the crossroads of different European cultures. The country is known for its art, architecture, and cuisine. It is also home to many famous artists, including the surrealist painter René Magritte and the comic strip artist Hergé.

Belgian culture is also reflected in its festivals and celebrations. The country hosts numerous cultural events throughout the year, such as the famous Carnival of Binche and the Gentse Feesten music festival.

When it comes to education, Belgium has a well-developed education system with a high literacy rate of over 99%. The country has a wide range of universities and colleges, including some prestigious institutions like KU Leuven and Université catholique de Louvain.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Belgium may be a small country in size, but it has a lot to offer in terms of culture, economy, and society. From its diverse population to its thriving industries and rich cultural heritage, Belgium is a fascinating country to explore. Its statistical data reflects a strong and dynamic nation that continues to thrive in various aspects

  • What is the capital of Belgium?
    The capital of Belgium is Brussels.
  • What is the official language of Belgium?
    The official languages of Belgium are Dutch, French, and German.
  • What is the currency used in Belgium?
    The currency used in Belgium is the Euro (EUR).
  • What is the population of Belgium?
    As of 2021, the population of Belgium is approximately 11.5 million.
  • What is the national dish of Belgium?
    The national dish of Belgium is moules-frites (mussels and fries).
  • What are some popular Belgian foods?
    Some popular Belgian foods include waffles, chocolate, speculoos cookies, and stoemp (mashed potatoes with vegetables).
  • What is a popular Belgian beer?
    One popular Belgian beer is Stella Artois.
  • What is a traditional Belgian dessert?
    A traditional Belgian dessert is tarte au riz (rice tart).
  • What are some traditional Belgian festivals?
    Some traditional Belgian festivals include Carnaval de Binche, Ghent Festival, and Tomorrowland music festival.
  • What are some famous Belgian musicians?
    Some famous Belgian musicians include Stromae, Jacques Brel, and Selah Sue.
  • What are some popular tourist attractions in Belgium?
    Some popular tourist attractions in Belgium include Grand Place in Brussels, Bruges' canals, and the Atomium in Brussels.
  • Is it safe to drink tap water in Belgium?
    Yes, tap water in Belgium is safe to drink.
  • What is the legal drinking age in Belgium?
    The legal drinking age in Belgium is 18.
  • What is the weather like in Belgium?
    Belgium has a temperate climate with mild summers and cool winters.
  • Do I need a visa to visit Belgium?
    It depends on your nationality. Citizens of EU countries do not need a visa to visit Belgium, while citizens of other countries may need a Schengen visa.
  • What is the best time of year to visit Belgium?
    The best time to visit Belgium is during the spring (April-May) or fall (September-October) when the weather is mild and there are fewer tourists.
  • What is the public transportation system like in Belgium?
    Belgium has an extensive public transportation system including trains, buses, trams, and metros.
  • What is the voltage used in Belgium?
    The voltage used in Belgium is 230V with a frequency of 50Hz. Plugs have two round pins.
  • What is the emergency number in Belgium?
    The emergency number in Belgium is 112 for all emergencies.
  • Do I need to tip in restaurants in Belgium?
    Tipping in restaurants is not mandatory in Belgium, but it is appreciated. A 10% tip is considered generous.
  • What are some traditional Belgian souvenirs?
    Some traditional Belgian souvenirs include chocolate, beer, lace, and comic books.
  • Is English widely spoken in Belgium?
    Yes, English is widely spoken in major cities and tourist areas in Belgium.
  • Can I use my credit card in Belgium?
    Credit cards are widely accepted in major cities and tourist areas in Belgium.
  • What is the time zone in Belgium?
    Belgium is in the Central European Time Zone (CET), which is UTC+1.
  • What are the driving laws in Belgium?
    In Belgium, cars drive on the right side of the road. The speed limit on highways is 120km/h, and in cities, it is usually 50km/h.
  • What is the VAT rate in Belgium?
    The standard VAT rate in Belgium is 21%, but there is a reduced rate of 6% for food, books, and public transportation.
  • What are some traditional Belgian crafts?
    Some traditional Belgian crafts include lace-making, pottery, and woodcarving.
  • Can I visit other countries while in Belgium?
    Yes, Belgium is part of the Schengen Area, so you can travel to other Schengen countries without going through border control.
  • What are some popular day trips from Brussels?
    Some popular day trips from Brussels include Ghent, Bruges, and Antwerp.
  • What are some traditional Belgian games?
    Some traditional Belgian games include jeu de balle (a ball game), pigeon shooting, and balle pelote (a game similar to handball).
  • Is smoking allowed in public places in Belgium?
    No, smoking is not allowed in public places in Belgium.
  • What is the dress code for visiting churches in Belgium?
    It is recommended to dress modestly when visiting churches in Belgium, covering your shoulders and knees.
  • What are some popular ski resorts in Belgium?
    Some popular ski resorts in Belgium include Baraque de Fraiture and Ovifat.
  • What is the language of instruction in Belgian schools?
    The language of instruction in Belgian schools depends on the region. In Flanders, it is Dutch, in Wallonia, it is French, and in the German-speaking community, it is German.
  • Can I use my phone in Belgium?
    If you have an unlocked phone, you can purchase a local SIM card in Belgium. Alternatively, many cafes and restaurants offer free Wi-Fi.
  • What is the tipping culture like in Belgium?
    Tipping is not expected in most service industries in Belgium, but rounding up the bill or leaving a small tip is appreciated.
  • What are some popular Belgian fashion brands?
    Some popular Belgian fashion brands include Dries Van Noten, Ann Demeulemeester, and Maison Margiela.
  • What are some traditional Belgian Christmas dishes?
    Some traditional Belgian Christmas dishes include game meat, foie gras, and a Yule log cake.
  • Is there a dress code for visiting restaurants in Belgium?
    There is no strict dress code for restaurants in Belgium, but smart casual attire is recommended for fine dining establishments.
  • What are some popular music festivals in Belgium?
    Some popular music festivals in Belgium include Rock Werchter, Pukkelpop, and Graspop Metal Meeting.

A Closer Look at Belgium

Belgium Flag

Belgium

Belgium Formation Date

Belgium was formed on July 21, 1831.

Belgium Capital Name

Brussels

Belgium Neighbours

  1. France France
  2. Germany Germany
  3. Luxembourg Luxembourg
  4. Netherlands Netherlands

Exploring Belgium

Belgium: A Hidden Gem in the Heart of Europe

Belgium, a small yet significant country in Western Europe, is often overlooked by its more popular neighbors such as France and Germany. However, this hidden gem has a rich history, vibrant culture, and stunning landscapes that make it a must-visit destination for any traveler. As a cultural commentator and travel writer, I have had the pleasure of exploring Belgium and uncovering its many wonders. In this article, I will take you on a journey through this fascinating country, delving into its geography, history, politics, economy, and more.

Key Takeaways:

  • Belgium is located in Western Europe and is bordered by France, Germany, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands.
  • The country's name comes from the Latin word "Belgica" which was used to describe the region during the Roman era.
  • Belgium is known for its beautiful architecture, delicious cuisine, and world-renowned beers.
  • The country has a diverse population with three official languages: Dutch, French, and German.
  • Belgium is a federal parliamentary democracy with a constitutional monarchy.

Geography:

Belgium may be small in size (only about the size of Maryland), but it packs a punch when it comes to its geography. The country is divided into three regions: Flanders in the north, Wallonia in the south, and Brussels-Capital in the center. Each region has its own distinct landscape and culture. Flanders is known for its flat plains and fertile farmland. It is also home to the famous city of Bruges, with its picturesque canals and medieval architecture. Wallonia, on the other hand, is characterized by rolling hills, dense forests, and charming villages. The Ardennes, a mountainous region in the southeast, is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Belgium's location on the North Sea gives it access to important natural resources such as coal, iron ore, and natural gas. The country also has a temperate climate with mild winters and cool summers, making it an ideal destination for year-round travel.

Origin and History:

Belgium's history dates back to ancient times when it was inhabited by Celtic and Germanic tribes. In the 1st century BC, the region came under Roman rule and was named Belgica. Over the centuries, Belgium was ruled by various empires and kingdoms, including the Spanish, Austrian, and French. In 1830, Belgium gained its independence from the Netherlands and became a constitutional monarchy. The country played a significant role in both World Wars and has since become a founding member of the European Union.

Government and Politics:

Belgium is a federal parliamentary democracy with a constitutional monarchy. The King is the head of state, but his role is largely ceremonial. The country's government is led by a Prime Minister and a Council of Ministers who are responsible for day-to-day administration. Belgium is divided into three regions and three language communities: Dutch-speaking Flanders, French-speaking Wallonia, and German-speaking Brussels-Capital. This unique system allows each community to have control over its own cultural affairs while still being part of the larger federal government.

Commerce and Economy:

Belgium has a highly developed economy with a strong focus on trade. The country's strategic location in Europe has made it a hub for international commerce. Its main industries include food processing, chemicals, textiles, and machinery. Belgium is also known for its delicious chocolates, waffles, and world-renowned beers such as Stella Artois and Duvel. The country's currency is the Euro, and it has strong trade relations with its European neighbors as well as countries around the world.

Demographics:

Belgium has a population of approximately 11.5 million people, with the majority living in urban areas. The country is known for its diverse population, with three official languages: Dutch, French, and German. Dutch is the most widely spoken language, followed by French and then German. Belgium also has a high standard of living and a low unemployment rate. The country has a strong social welfare system that provides healthcare, education, and other benefits to its citizens.

Culture:

Belgium's culture is a blend of influences from its neighboring countries as well as its own unique traditions. The country is famous for its art, music, festivals, and delicious cuisine. The Flemish region is known for its traditional folk music and dance, while the Walloon region has a strong French influence in its music and cuisine. Belgium is also home to many famous artists such as René Magritte and Peter Paul Rubens. The country celebrates many festivals throughout the year, including the world-famous Carnival of Binche and the Ghent Festival. Belgium's cuisine is also something to be experienced, with dishes such as moules-frites (mussels and fries) and carbonade flamande (beef stew) being must-tries for any foodie.

Languages and Religion:

As mentioned earlier, Belgium has three official languages: Dutch, French, and German. However, there are also regional dialects spoken throughout the country. English is widely spoken in tourist areas, making it easy for visitors to communicate. Belgium is a predominantly Catholic country, but there is also a significant Muslim population due to immigration from North Africa. The country's religious diversity adds to its cultural richness and tolerance.

Education and Healthcare Systems:

Belgium has a high literacy rate, with a strong emphasis on education. The country has a well-developed education system, with both public and private schools. Higher education is also highly valued, with some of the top universities in Europe located in Belgium. Belgium's healthcare system is considered one of the best in the world. It is funded by the government and provides universal coverage for its citizens. The country also has a high life expectancy and low infant mortality rate.

Sports and Recreation:

Belgium may not be known as a sports powerhouse, but it has had its fair share of success in various sports. Football (soccer) is the most popular sport in the country, with the national team consistently ranking among the top teams in the world. Cycling is also a popular sport in Belgium, with many famous races such as the Tour de France and the Tour of Flanders taking place in the country. Other popular sports include tennis, hockey, and basketball.

Tourism:

Belgium may not be on everyone's travel bucket list, but it certainly should be. The country has something for every type of traveler, from its charming cities to its picturesque countryside. Some must-visit attractions include the Grand Place in Brussels, the medieval city of Bruges, and the stunning Ardennes region. Belgium is also home to many castles, museums, and art galleries that showcase its rich history and culture.

Travel Information for Foreign Visitors:

If you are planning a trip to Belgium, there are a few things you should know before you go. Citizens of most countries do not need a visa to enter Belgium for stays of up to 90 days. However, it is always best to check with your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date information. Belgium is a safe country to visit, but it is always important to take precautions when traveling. It is recommended to have travel insurance and to be aware of your surroundings at all times. The local currency is the Euro, and credit cards are widely accepted. Belgium is known for its love of beer, chocolate, and waffles, so be sure to indulge in these treats while you're there. And don't forget to try some of the local delicacies such as moules-frites and speculoos cookies.

Quotes:

- "In Belgium, they say there are seven sacraments: baptism, reconciliation, holy orders, marriage, the anointing of the sick, the Eucharist, and cycling." - Erik Zabel - "Belgium is a country invented by the British to annoy the French." - Charles de Gaulle - "Belgium is a nation of small people." - Charles Baudelaire

Conclusion:

Belgium may be small in size, but it has a big heart and a rich culture that is waiting to be explored. From its stunning landscapes to its delicious cuisine, this country has something for everyone. Whether you are interested in history, art, or simply enjoying the good life, Belgium should definitely be on your travel radar. So pack your bags and get ready to discover this hidden gem in the heart of Europe.

Belgium Highest Point Name

The highest point in Belgium is Signal de Botrange at 694 metres (2,277 ft) above sea level.

Belgium Capital Longitude

Brussels, Belgium is the country's capital, and it has a longitude of 4.3517° E.

Belgium Capital Latitude

51.509865

Belgium Official Languages

DutchThe official languages of Belgium are Dutch, French and German.

Belgium Ethnic Groups

Belgium is a multicultural and multilingual country, with indigenous Flemish, Walloon and German citizens. There is also a strong presence of cultural minorities such as Moroccans, Turks, Chinese, Congolese and Italians. According to the census of 2019, around 1.05 million foreigners were living in Belgium, while the total population of the country stands at 11.5 million. The largest minority group is the Moroccans, who constitute approximately 8% of the total population. The other major minority groups include the Turks, 4.7%, the Italians, 2%, the Chinese, 1.3%, and the Congolese, 1%. Other foreign ethnic groups in Belgium include Albanians, Syrians, Dutch, Poles, and British.

Belgium Religions

The majority of people in Belgium are Christian, with Roman Catholicism being the largest religion - with 56.5% of the population reported to be Catholic. Protestantism, both Reformed (20.2%) and Anglican (0.8%), is also present in addition to a small, but significant, Muslim population (3.7%) and other non-Christian religious affiliations, such as Judaism (0.4%), Buddhism (<0.1%), and Hinduism (0.3%). Notably, the country also has an increasing number of non-believers and agnostics, with 25.3% of the population identifying as non-believers or without a religion.

Belgium Total Area

30,530 km²

Belgium Land Area

Belgium has an area of 30,528 square kilometers (11,787 square miles).

Belgium Water Area

Belgium has a total area of 30,528 square kilometers, of which 307 square kilometers is water. The Principality of Liege has the largest percentage of water area with 48.9%. Other counties with water area include Luxemburg (36.2%), Namur (18.8%), Hainaut (13.9%) and Antwerp (10.6%).

Belgium Total Population

The estimated population of Belgium as of July 2020 was 11,493,278 people.

Belgium Currency Name

The currency of Belgium is the Euro (EUR).

Belgium Currency Code

The country currency code for Belgium is EUR.

Belgium Currency Symbol

The currency symbol for Belgium is € (Euro).

Belgium Time Zones

  • Standard Time: UTC+01:00
  • Daylight Saving Time: UTC+02:00

Belgium is in the Central European Time Zone (CET), offset by 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+1). Daylight Saving Time (DST) – also known as Summer Time – is observed in Belgium, when the time is shifted forward by 1 hour for daylight hours. It typically starts on the last Sunday of March at 02:00 AM and ends on the last Sunday of October at 03:00 AM.

Belgium Calling Code

The country calling code for Belgium is +32

Belgium Internet TLD

www.aveholidays.be

How to Say "Belgium" In Different Languages?

Chinese
比利时 (zh-CN)
French
Belgique (fr-FR)
German
Belgien (de-DE)
Greek
Βέλγιο (el-GR)
Hindi
बेल्जियम (hi-IN)
Bahasa Indonesia
Belgia (id-ID)
Italian
Belgio (it-IT)
Japanese
ベルギー (ja-JP)
Korean
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Belgium Popular Holidays

New Year's Day
1 January
Epiphany
6 January
Carnival of Binche
26 February (1 March)
International Women's Rights Day
8 March
Saint Joseph's Day
19 March
Ease Sunday
21 March
Easter Day
4 April
Labour Day
1 May
Ascension Day
13 May
Whit Monday
24 May
Bastille Day
14 July
Assumption of Mary
15 August
Saint Nicholas Day
5 December
Santa Claus Day
6 December
Immaculate Conception
8 December
Christmas - Christian Catholic
25 December

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Upcoming Holidays in Belgium

National and Public Holidays in Belgium next days/week/month/year

UN French Language Day

French Language Day celebrates the beauty of the French tongue and encourages its continued learning. The holiday's activities include educational events, language-related activities, film screenings, and more.

Easter Sunday in Belgium

"Easter Sunday in Belgium is a celebration that encapsulates both traditional and modern customs. From colorful processions and grand feasts, to scenic egg hunts and indulging in delicious chocolate treats, this national holiday is a perfect blend of culture, religion, and joy. Truly a must-experience for any traveler looking to immerse themselves in Belgian traditions and festivities."

Easter Monday in Belgium

"Easter Monday in Belgium is a vibrant celebration filled with cultural traditions and festive gatherings. This national holiday, observed on the day after Easter Sunday, offers travelers a unique opportunity to experience the country's rich history and indulge in delicious Belgian chocolates. A must-visit for those seeking a blend of tradition and indulgence."

Easter – Christian Catholic

Easter is a Christian holiday that celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is the most important religious feast of the year in the Catholic Church. Every year, Easter Sunday falls on the first Sunday after the full moon following the vernal equinox. This usually falls on the first Sunday in April. On this day, Christians attend special services in honor of the resurrection, and exchange decorated Easter eggs and gifts. Traditionally, families and friends gather for a celebratory meal.

Easter Sunday

Easter Sunday is a Christian holiday that celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ three days after his death. It is one of the most important and oldest Christian festivals, which is celebrated with religious services, feasts, and egg hunts. During the holiday season, many churches will celebrate with food, singing, and special services. In many countries, Easter is a public holiday and is celebrated by families in various ways, including decorating eggs and exchanging gifts.

Ascension Thursday

The Feast of the Ascension, celebrated forty days after Easter, commemorates Jesus’ ascent to heaven where he was seated at the right hand of God as the Messiah, the divinely appointed King of Kings. It is traditionally celebrated with liturgical services, readings from scripture, and hymns. In some countries, such as Austria and Poland, the day is also a public holiday.

WWII Victory Day

WWII Victory Day is a national holiday in Europe which commemorates the Allied victory and celebrates the end of WWII in Europe. It is marked with military parades, gun salutes, and memorial services honoring the millions of people who lost their lives during the war.

Europe Day

Europe Day celebrates the Schumann Declaration of 1950 that marked the beginning of closer European integration and the birth of the European Union. It is observed annually on May 9.

Whit Sunday

Whit Sunday (also known as Pentecost) is a Christian holiday celebrating the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles and other followers of Jesus. It marks the end of the Easter season.

Whit Monday

Whit Monday is a public holiday in several countries, including Germany and Austria. It marks the end of Pentecost and is celebrated with church attendance and other festivities.

Upcoming Festivals in Belgium

National and Public Holidays around the world in the next few days

Flower Carpet in Brussels in Belgium

Brussels' Flower Carpet is an annual event held in the Grand Place, the city's central square. Every two years, the whole square is carpeted with begonias of a limited palette of colors, creating an impressive geometric designs. The event lasts four days and attracts thousands of visitors who admire the colorful 'carpet' and enjoy the accompanying live music, food and drinks.

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